Recipe: baked mussels two ways


My love for seafood started at an early age with our family eating prawns every single Friday. I still love it, although it’s difficult to get hold of Atlantic prawns in London. But that means that every time I go back to Sweden I make sure to eat as much seafood as I possibly can.


One evening this summer I made these baked mussels as a starter, and they went down a treat.

I had two different toppings but I would say they were both equally yummy. The green ones were inspired by Oysters Rockefeller and had spinach and cream in the filling and the white ones were just topped with homemade aioli.


Baked mussels with aioli

2-3 large mussels per person

1 batch homemade aioli

Rinse the mussels a few times in a colander to remove sand. De-beard the mussels and rinse again. Discard of any mussels that won’t close their shell when tapping on it. Put the mussels in a pan of boiling water with a little salt. Put the lid on and cook for a minute or so or until the mussels have open. Drain in a colander. 

Open the mussels and discard the empty halves. Dollop aioli onto the mussels to they’re covered. Place in a oven-proof dish and bake until golden in 200C or under the grill, about 5 minutes. Serve with crusty bread. 

Baked mussels a’la Rockefeller

2-3 large mussels per person

1 shallots, finely chopped

1 tbsp butter

3 nests of frozen chopped spinach (or the equivalent of fresh spinach)

4 tbsp double cream

grated nutmeg

salt & white pepper

Rinse the mussels a few times in a colander to remove sand. De-beard the mussels and rinse again. Discard of any mussels that won’t close their shell when tapping on it. Put the mussels in a pan of boiling water with a little salt. Put the lid on and cook for a minute or so or until the mussels have open. Drain in a colander. 

Fry the shallots on medium heat in a small saucepan until translucent but not brown. Add the frozen spinach and let the water bubble away. Add the double cream and nutmeg and let the mixture reduce a little. Season well. 

Open the mussels and discard the empty halves. Spoon the spinach mixture into the shells and place in a oven-proof dish and bake until golden in 200C or under the grill, about 5 minutes. Serve with crusty bread. 

Gotland: going south


Our second full day on Gotland we wanted to cover as much of the remaining half of the island as we could. We drove south and the first stop was near Djupvik to try to get a glimpse of the two islands called Karlsöarna. The large one is barely visible to the left but the small one you can see very well to the right in the photo.


The coast here is gorgeous with wild flowers and clear water. It was too cold for a dip, sadly, but still enjoyable.


We got back into the car and drove further south, stopping when a photo opportunity presented itself (which it did quite often). The roads here are quite small so it’s easy to stop and get out with the camera.


Eventually we made our way down to Burgsvik and got out for a walk around the little harbour.


The local smokehouse had a food truck there, so we bought some lunch to take with us to our next stop.


Which was Hoburg, on the south-west corner of the island. There are large stone formations here, just by the waterfront. One of the large rocks is shaped like the face of a man and so the rock is called Hoburgsgubben (the old man from Hoburg).


I struggled to see it though, but apparently this is him, but from the wrong angle.


It was lovely to just walk around here, though. And grab one of the picnic tables and eat our lunch. We had smoked prawns (they are SO delicious!), aioli and fresh crusty bread from a bakery. So lovely!


Next we stopped at Folhammar to look at more raukar (the unusual stone formations local to Gotland). It’s so cool to see and so different to the part of Sweden where I grew up.


Celeriac, mushrooms, croûtons and aioli


Sometimes when the fridge at a first glance looks completely empty, it is usually possible to rustle up meal after a little think. I love this type of problem solving and creating a satisfying meal out of ‘nothing’.

I am particularly happy with this dish. It is quite earthy in flavour, but the squirt of lemon juice makes it fresh and I love the contrasting textures of crispy croûtons and soft celeriac and mushrooms.

Celeriac, mushrooms, croûtons and aioli, serves 2

150 g celeriac

100 g chestnut mushrooms

1 handful dried mushrooms (I had a mix of black trumpet and porcini) 

10 cm ciabatta 

1/2 garlic clove, chopped

butter and oil for frying

salt, black pepper

1 lemon wedge, the juice

1 batch aioli

Cut the bread into cubes. Fry the croûtons crispy in butter and oil in a frying pan. Add the garlic at the end but be careful not to burn. Remove from the pan. Soak the dried mushrooms in hot water in a bowl. Peel and grate the celeriac coarsely. Fry until soft in butter and oil and remove from the pan. Squeeze the water off the mushrooms and slice the chestnut mushrooms. Fry the mushrooms together on high heat in oil/butter until golden. Add the celeriac back to the pan for a few moments. Season well. Add the lemon juice.

Spoon the mushrooms and celeriac into bowls, top with aioli and a handful of croûtons. 

Squid with chorizo, cannellini beans, spinach and aioli


One reason I love living in London is of course the restaurant scene. It is ever changing and evolving and I love (and hate!) the fact that I can’t keep up. Eating out inspires me a lot as a home cook but it is not always the most impressive and technically difficult dishes that appeal the most.

Since I had a similar version of this squid dish at Terroirs in October I have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to cook it since. So when Laura, another squid lover, came for dinner the other week I knew exactly what to cook.


The Terroirs original has chickpeas instead of my cannellini beans but other than that I think I hit quite close to home. My homecooked dish was just as satisfying and although this is a straight-forward recipe with simple ingredients the combination is just utterly wonderful. (Chorizo is a bit like bacon – whatever you add it to tastes wonderful.) All it requires is some crusty bread and a nice glass of wine.


Squid with chorizo, cannellini beans, spinach and aioli, serves 4

400 g squid, sliced into rings

150 g chorizo, sliced

1 tin (400g) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained 

250 g fresh spinach

oil for frying

1/2 lemon, the juice

salt, black pepper

To serve:

chopped parsley

aioli (see below)

crusty bread

Fry the chorizo in the oil. Remove from the pan but keep the oil to flash-fry the squid. A few minutes is all you need. Put the chorizo back in the pan and add the beans. Wilt the spinach in a separate pan and add it to the big pan too. Squeeze with lemon juice, season and serve! 

Aioli, serves 4

1 egg yolk, at room temperature

150 ml vegetable oil

1/2 lemon, the juice

salt, white pepper

1 garlic clove, pressed

Place the yolk in a mixing bowl and start whisking. Add the oil drop by drop and gradually in a thin beam. Once the mayonnaise has thickened, add the lemon juice to loosen it. Then start whisking again and incorporate the remaining oil. Add more lemon for flavour as well as salt, pepper and garlic. 

Dinner party preparations and nibbles

Place cards with songs

I had a dinner party for my friends in the summer house to mark my 30th birthday and with several guests it was quite a lot to prepare, but it all went well.

I feel confident enough in the kitchen now to be able to improvise if I need to. The day before the party I went grocery shopping and prepared the frozen dessert and on the day of the dinner party I did everything else, with help from my best friend Emma and my parents.

Emma got to do all the boring but time consuming tasks like wash and cut the potatoes, which I am very grateful for. We also left all the washing up for next day so we too could enjoy the party fully and that worked really well.

Mum made the table decorations

Salmon for the starter

The mussels are prepped

The meat is browned before hitting the oven

The guests can pour the aperitif

When the guests arrived we had bubbly and nibbles. Both the lovely ricotta stuffed mushrooms with lemon and persillade as well as mussels with aioli. In Sweden we don’t eat mussels very often, and I guess this was my attempt to put them ‘out there’. It seemed to work.

Mussels with aioli, makes 35-40

1 kg fresh large mussels (ca 35-40)

1 batch homemade aioli (see below)


Rinse the mussels and de-beard them. Discard of the mussels that are open and or have broken shell. Bring the water to the boil in a large sauce pan and place as many as the mussels you can fit (cook them in batches if necessary), put the lid on and cook for a few minutes until the mussels are opened. Drain and let cool enough for you to discard of the empty half shells. Place the mussels shell side down in an oven-proof dish and place a dollop (1/2-1 tsp) of aioli on each mussel. Put in a 200C oven for about 10 minutes before serving. 


1 egg yolk, at room temperature

150 ml neutral oil

1/2 lemon, the juice

salt, pepper

1 garlic clove, pressed

Place the yolk in a bowl and add the oil drop by drop at first and then in a small spout, while whisking. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper and garlic.

Asparagus with aioli and parma ham crisp

I adore asparagus, and would never grow tired of eating it. But I do find it more interesting served as a starter than as an accopaniment to meat or fish.

The latest starter is this simple dish with cooked but crunchy asparagus, homemade aioli and parma ham crisps. Quick, easy and delicious.

Asparagus with aioli and parma ham crisp, serves 2

6-8 asparagus spears, tough ends removed

2 slices parma ham



1 egg yolk, at room temperature

150 ml neutral oil, I used sunflowe

1/2 lemon, the juice

salt, pepper

1 garlic clove, pressed

Preheat the oven to 225C. Place the parma ham slices on a wire rack or on a baking tray. Let it crisp up in the oven for 3-5 minutes. Leave to cool.

Beat the egg yolk in a bowl and add the oil drip by drip and eventually a thin stream. Season to taste with lemon juice. Add the garlic and season with salt and pepper.

Bring water to boil in a large pan. Add the asparagus and bring to the boil again. Cook for a minute then drain.

Smear a dollop of aioli on each plate. Place the asparagus next to it. Cut the parma ham crisps in half and arrange on top of the asparagus. Add some freshly ground black pepper and serve.

Dinner with the girls: pulled pork with pitta and aioli

Last Sunday was a girlie day back home spent with my best friends Emma and Malin. Our male friend Linus also joined us for the first part which was lunch/brunch so he got to pretend to be a girl for the day.

Actually we are not the girliest of girls so the conversation involved golf, football and handball among other things so I don’t think Linus suffered too much.

After our lunch and a brisk walk in the cold, Linus left and us girls went back to Emma and chilled out.

Emma wanted pulled pork for supper so I prepared that before we went outside and it smelt really nice by the time we got back to her flat. We then cooked together to prepare the rest. I instructed Malin to make aioli and Emma did the salad and grated root veg for the slaw. We also made a big batch of guacamole to have with nachos. It was the first time I served pulled pork with pitta and aioli but I highly recommend it as it was a great combo.

After all that food we had to sit back on the sofa, continue chatting and keeping one eye on the Masters. It was a lovely day and I do hope we get the chance to have one again soon. It is not always easy for us to meet up as we live in different places (countries even) and work different hours. But when we do meet up we always have a great time!

Guacemole, serves 6

5 small avocados

3 tbsp creme fraiche

juice from 1 lime

1/2-1 tsp Worchestershire sauce

tabasco, to taste

salt, white pepper

Mush up the avocados with a fork, add creme fraiche and lime juice. Season to taste witth Worchestershire sauce and tabasco, finish off with salt and pepper.

Aioli, serves 3

1 egg yolk

ca 150 ml mild rapeseed oil (or other neautral oil)

1,5 garlic clove, pressed

1-2 tsp lemon juice

salt, white pepper

Place the yolk in a mixing bowl and add the oil drop by drop while whisking away. After a while you can add the oil abit faster but take care. Once the oil is incorporated, add the garlic and lemon, season to taste with salt and pepper.