Category Archives: Pictures

Halloween Caramel Candy Corn Popcorn for EF On The Go Vlog!

I’m working with Education First on a series of videos for their brand new ON THE GO with EF YouTube Channel! Here in the very first episode where I show you a really cool Halloween treat, featuring a classic Halloween candy: Caramel Candy Corn Popcorn… yes, you heard right! And since EF is the premiere language learning school, they include some excellent vocabulary words worth knowing for the Halloween season…

You’ll need:

  • About 12 handfuls popped corn
  • 440g (1 c.) packed brown sugar
  • 164 g (1/2 c.) light syrup
  • 114g (1/2 c.) butter
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • As much candy corn (or other candy) as you like!

Slow Cooked Chicken Tacos

I’m like always eating tacos, but these chili chicken tacos are kinda my specialty: Juicy slow-cooked chicken breast that just shreds apart. Plus! You could use this meat for a lot of different Mexican dishes!

You’ll need:

  • chicken breasts
  • onion
  • garlic
  • bay leaves (lagerblad)
  • tomato paste
  • beer or water or chicken broth
  • vinegar
  • smoked paprika!
  • cumin (spiskummin)
  • chili powder
  • oregano
  • whole dried chilies (New Mexico, red chili, chipotle, etc.)
  • salt

For the tacos:

  • corn or flour tortillas
  • ‘queso fresco’ cheese (or the feta hack)
  • quick pickled radish (splash of red wine vinegar & salt)
  • red onion
  • cilantro (which is coriander! See blog header)

Queso Fresco hack:

When you make a nice slow cooked meat, you want to use the good stuff: queso fresco. But it’s hard to find where I live… SO! here is a little food hack using feta cheese as a substitution: Easy Mexican Queso Fresco Food Hack

Here’s “Taco! Taco! Tex-Mex” kids book to celebrate (U.S) National Taco Day!

Taco! Taco! Tex-Mex Book

Recently published on the Amazon Kindle store: “Taco! Taco! Tex-Mex” a kids ebook on the simple task of cooking a taco: Tex-Mex style. The book is really approachable for even the youngest readers and taco obsessed grown ups alike. If you don’t have a Kindle (I don’t) you can read on any device with the Kindle app, as well as right on your computer.

Here are some pages from the book, although the detail looks better on ipad! (Check out Amazon for reviews and more info)

Taco! Taco! Tex-Mex Book cook meatTaco! Taco! Tex-Mex chop lettuce

Expat Food Hack: Making REAL Buffalo Wings in Sweden

Amerikansk Buffalo Wings

Amerikansk Buffalo Wings

Dear Sweden:
Please, please, please stop making wings with sweet chili sauce, and then calling them Buffalo wings. It is misleading, and frustrating. I love you, but this I can not accept. We need to talk…

Buffalo wings are made with a tangy cayenne peppar and vinager based hot sauce, most popular is Frank’s Red Hot. Now, I know we can’t just go out and buy the original Frank’s Red Hot in stores here… but there is always a compromise better than sweet chili sauce… and finally I’ve found it in Stockholm: Piri Piri hot sauce.

Piri Piri Hot Sauce or 'Expat' Buffalo Sauce

Piri Piri Hot Sauce or ‘Expat’ Buffalo Sauce

Burn Butter Burn (Public Service Reminder)

Butter Burns

I know… butter tastes really good… but it doesn’t do well in high temperatures, so if you want to cook with it, add a little oil to ‘take the heat off’

I will (probably) never buy Thai Red Curry Take-Out again!

Thai Red Curry with Chicken (Röd curry)

Thai Red Curry with Chicken (Röd curry)

 

Thai red curry might be the easiest and fastest dish I’ve ever cooked. Seriously. I was furious I never tried to do this before, and instead thought I needed secret wok skills to pull this off with ease- I was wrong. You don’t even need salt and pepper to finish it! All you need is Thai red curry paste (in supermarket as well as Asian market) and a can of coconut milk. The dish you see above includes:

Chicken breast meat

Green beans (haricot verts)

Coconut milk

Thai red curry paste

Some cilantro (or coriander- see my blog header!)

That’s it my friends. Just stir-fry your meat of choice until done, add about 2 tablespoons of Thai red curry paste, then stir in a can of coconut milk. Boil down then add a vegetable or two you like. Prepare some rice for the side while you do that, and BOOM dinner for two is served.

Coconut Milk (Kokos Mjölk)

Coconut Milk (Kokos Mjölk)

Thai Red Curry Paste

Thai Red Curry Paste

Pumpkin Pulp… to use or not to use? That is the question…

The best pumkin ever!

Okay, I’m a little too excited about the pumpkin but it was perfect!

It’s Halloween time!

This year my wonderful boyfriend came home with the best looking pumpkin I have ever had the opportunity to gut! I almost didn’t want to cut it. Even though Halloween seems to be a confusing holiday to the Swedes, who haven’t decided to stick to a single day to trick or treat (so kids can pop up any weekend night around Halloween… random) I wanted to keep it classic with a good old fashioned Jack ‘O Latern.

My Halloween jack ‘o latern pumpkin after carving

When it was all said and done I was left with a lot of pulp and seeds. Just as my mom used to do when I was growing up, I salted and toasted the pumpkin seeds, but I couldn’t bring myself to throw out that stringy pulp. It is food afterall and I like a challenge. So, the plan is to make a puree using the pulp (removing as much of the stringy part as I can), and to make a cheesecake with it using and extra egg. Hopefully the egg will help set the cheesecake, since the pumpkin puree will likely make it a bit more loose then a cheesecake need be. Any other tips are welcome!

Toasted pumpkin seeds right out the oven

Flashback: Bakesale Betty’s in Oakland

Bakesale Betty's Chicken Sandwich

Bakesale Betty’s Chicken Sandwich, Oakland California. Kendra Williams-Valentine.

This month’s Bon Apetit arrived, and behold, emblazoned on the front cover: A crispy chicken sandwich with fresh slaw- I instantly knew that somehow, someway, the Bakesale Betty gospel had reached the east coast, and now the nation for sure.

The perfect chicken sandwich

The Bon Apetit magazine cover that set my memories in motion: Bakesale Betty’s!

It was August 2011 when I visited this lunch-spot supreme. I was in Oakland, working with La Wanda from CocoaDiva for the month of August. She, aware of my culinary sensibilities (read obsession) wanted to take me to the new hot lunch-spot for a “Fried-” I instantly interrupted with a “yes!” eyes wide with anticipation. I regained my composure, apologized, and let her finish with a laugh: “fried chicken sandwich…but really really good, and fresh”. I have to admit, when she said “fresh” I was thinking “fresh out the fryer” so I was not expecting the glory that awaited (Although freshly fried was also true, she was referring to the fresh slaw in the sandwich). So what does two hard working women do on a hot summer afternoon in the middle of prepping for a food event? Ride over to the other side of Oakland to wait in line for a sandwich, that’s what (I’m in Cali baby, what do you want?).

HowDo tip: Pico De Gallo (fresh salsa)

Czech Food: meat sweats may be a real thing- Prague

Chilli Sausages

Chilli Sausages
No side plate, so I had to beast it.

 

That’s right, Czech Republic.  The quintessential European city.

Czech food is the grandmother of good old ‘meat and potatoes’ cuisine, and you get great value for your dollar. You truly don’t need to worry about budgeting for a good meal.

 

Prague is a MEAT LOVERS PARADISE (Vegetarians, this is not your culinary city) however, heaven can quickly turn into hell (read: meat night sweats by day 3 and dreaming about a salad to cool.) Of course you can find more then just Czech food to get a bit more variation, I spotted a couple Vietnamese places in the Vinorady district… but I couldn’t help myself and indulged in Czech fare exclusively.  Just remember: that Pork knuckle you are ordering is a dish, of a huge pork knuckle (with perhaps a bit of horseradish and mustard on side) you will need to scour the menu (and even then I would just ask to see if they have any sides, that isn’t a potato)

Nakládaný hermelín (pickled cheese)

You know you’re neck deep in a beer culture when all the starters, even at a restaurant, pairs well with (you guessed it): BEER. It would be great to have some of these bad boys to start making an appearance on the local pub menu… or gastro pub for that matter (hint hint all you cool bar owners out west). I must say, I do enjoy a good sausage, and this city rules this specialty. However, there’s lots more then sausages, I’d try the Nakládaný hermelín (pickled cheese)

LOKAL: I like this place

Lokal is a beer hall restaurant not far from old town square, and my meal here really made my whole trip. Not just the food, but also the atmosphere. It is more of a beer hall, with long communal tables, bustling with life (and a bit of smoke in the front section). I am still thinking about the tripe soup (from bar buffet) … it was so tasty, I wanted to go back for more the next day. True to Czech fashion, there was only tripe in it- but between that and the broth I really didn’t need anything else. On the menu they state “no flavorings added” and Maggie (a seasoning salt) on request with goulash. This lack of confidence must only be as far as the goulash because all I needed was a spoon for that tripe soup… I don’t even want to talk about it anymore.

The schnitzel with potato salad didn’t look like much coming out, but cut a piece and it’s buttery crisp in all the right places. Very well done. Don’t let it get cold while you take pictures, eat it fresh out the pan or not at all. I don’t claim to be a schnitzel aficionado; but I know a damn thing or two about fried food… hats off. Well played.