Seafood feast, Swedish caviar and girolle toast

IMG_8610In my family, we don’t need much of an excuse to have an extravagant dinner, but celebrating my belated birthday with my parents we went all out on the stuff we love – seafood.

IMG_8624

Girolles are usually in abundance in August, although the first little ‘shrooms can be found in the woods as early as June. In Sweden we worship girolles as their season coincide with the crayfish parties. The first ones I eat every late summer has to be served like this; fried in butter with garlic and parsley, served on bread also fried in butter (or at least toasted). So delicious!

IMG_8625

Then we went outside to the barbecue to grill some oysters. I love oysters regardless of how they are prepared but my parents prefer them warm.

IMG_8631

Simply place the opened shells on live coal until the juices start to bubble. Remove with a thick glove as they heat up quickly. Add lemon juice and tabasco and eat.

IMG_8641

After that exercise we had löjrom (Swedish caviar; vendace roe from Kalix) served in the classic manner with butter-fried toast, creme fraiche and chopped red onions.

IMG_8615

After that we got started on the seafood. We had smoked cold-water prawns, Swedish crayfish, langoustines and crab claws. All washed down with Taittinger Brut Réserve. Needless to say we did not need any pudding after all that…

A perfect day

This weekend my best friend and her fiancee came to visit and it was such a great one. We had a really busy day Saturday but in a relaxed way and we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Here is the recipe for a perfect (for us) day in London:

8-10am: Wake up, have a shower and enjoy a good breakfast before braving the cold.

10.30am: Take the tube to Hampstead and walk towards the Heath. Walk towards Highgate and enjoy the sunshine. Stop on the top of Parliament Hill to admire the view and take some photos.

12ish: Walk to Highgate Cemetery and visit either the East (newer) Cemetary or the older West one.

12.45pm: Walk up the massive hill to Highgate village and stop at the first nice pub you see. Order lunch and drinks and just relax for a while.

2pm: Walk down hill (yay!) to Archway tube station and take the tube to Charing Cross. Buy some plasters and put them on your sore heels and walk towards St James’s Park. Walk around the park and up towards Buckingham Palace on your Way to Green Park and Piccadilly. Walk to the large Waterstones and the top floor bar, the 5th View. Order some cocktails (a minimum of two) and enjoy the afternoon with your lovely friends.

6.30pm: Settle the bill and pop into Fortnum’s to buy a nice bottle of wine. Go home and change into stretchy trousers.

7.30pm: Have a glass of champagne and snack on some lovely nibbles while preparing dinner.

8pm: Dig into pulled pork from the Crockpot and whatever you like to serve with it.

9pm: Move over to the sofa and stretch out and enjoy another glass of wine.

10pm: Realise that you have room for dessert after all and make a quick sundae with vanilla icecream, chocolate sauce and chocolate chip cookies. Agree that homemade icecream beats anything!