Time to visit another country, time to pack up curiosity and enthusiasm to discover Sweden through Ilva’s word. Ilva, whose fantastic blog, Lucullian Delights, an Italian Experience, is one of my favourite ever, is an exceptional foodblogger and photographer, but her high professionalism always comes along with kindness, sensibility and friendship. So, let’s pass the word on Ilva!
I was really happy when our lovely Juls asked me to do a guest blog post here because in this way I could do what I usually do every summer but not this year – I could make a virtual journey to my country of origin, Sweden. Summer is the best season in Sweden, life is so much easier, the light is all over and all the time, well almost at least and the only thing is that you really don’t know if the weather will be with you or against you!
I rarely think about me being a Swede, living abroad have somehow made me much less nationalistic than I once was, not that I was that nationalistic but I felt more for Sweden. I am not one of those expats who celebrate their countries various national holidays and traditions, I do it when I am in Sweden but not here in Italy and to be honest I feel much better for it! Sounds bad? Not really, I really love being in Sweden and my children all want to live there one day which makes me happy though I think they might change their minds after spending a whole year there, including winter.
I hope my photos will give you a feeling of my Sweden, a place embraced by nature and with a relaxing calm, and that you will be able to go there one day!
I wanted to create something very Swedish for Juls and you and the most Swedish food I can think of is Lingonberries, a red berry that grows in the deep woods and that has this nice acid tang it. You usually make jam out of them but you use that not only for sweet things but serve them with meatballs and other savoury dishes as well. Here I made a cookie and to give a little Italian twist to them, I added pine nuts!
Lingonberry Cookies with Pine Nuts
- 150 g / 5 3/8 oz salted butter
- 100 g / 3 1/2 oz sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 3oo g / 10 5/8 plain flour
- lingonberry jam, you can find that at IKEA
- pine nuts
Stir butter and sugar creamy, don’t stir too much. Add the egg yolk and mix it until creamy.
Add flour and work the dough until it’s smooth.
Roll it out with a rolling pin and cut out the forms you want, I’m getting old, romantic and soppy so I obviously made hearts. Put them on a baking sheet.
Put a small spoonful of lingonberry jam in the middle of each cookie.
Sprinkle the cookies with pine nuts and bake in a pre-heated oven at 175°C/350°F for 8-10 minutes.
Thank you Ilva for this delicious recipe! Now I leave you with a few amazing pictures that, I’m sure, will make you grab your passport and run to the nearest airport to reach Sweden!