One of the best restaurants in Stockholm had a two week pop-up here in London a few weeks ago. I made sure to book tickets for me and my no 1. foodie friend Caroline.
The venue, Carousel, was a fairly small space with three long communal tables and every seat was taken. Our table neighbours were an American couple around the same age as us and an older Georgian couple who were regulars. The six of us got to share the food served on big platters.
But we started with a little snack. I have already forgotten what the deicious cream was but at least I can remember it was served on puffed rye.
The food was more or less what I had expected from Oaxen Krog & Slip; delicious (!) and relaxed, gourmet but not molecular gastronomy.
The first two dishes were served at the same time. Above is the amazing steak tartare of topside with mustard mayonnaise, soured cream and sourdough croutons. The cured herring with fried pickled shallots and a potato and leek purée was just as beautifully plated, I just forgot to take a picture of it. It was a little on the sharp side so not everyone at the table loved it, but it was a great dish even if the tartare was my favourite.
Next up was grilled celeriac baked in cheese whey with bleak roe and chives – just stunning!
An optional dish on the menu (i.e. not included in the set menu), was this smoked eel with broad bean tops, samphire and lemon butter, it was a nice combination of flavours and the eel was perfectly (not too much) smoked.
The main course was definitely the evening’s piece de resistance: knuckle of veal confit with roasted vegetables, purée and oxtail jus. So incredibly delicious!!
After all the heavy food a light pudding of salt fudge ice cream with cream of lingonberries and nut caramel was just what we wanted. This time we shared it two and two and it was a lovely end to our meal.
Oaxen Krog och Slip gästspel på Carousel London, 71 Blandford St, London W1U 8AB
For reasons far too boring to explain here, I can’t eat some produce rich in fibre. One of those items is cabbage that I absolutely adore in coleslaw, but even if I eat as little as a teaspoon I get stomach cramps straight away so it’s not really worth it.
So it is very lucky that slaw made from celeriac and carrots taste very similar to coleslaw and works with my tummy. I got the inspiration for this slaw from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s book River Cottage Everyday but I have adapted it a bit from the original. And the last time I made it I adapted it even further using wholegrain French mustard instead of Coleman’s regular English mustard and that almost transformed it into a whole new dish. It just added a little va-va-voom I think I am done tweaking now – I’ve find the perfect slaw recipe! I hope you enjoy it too.
Celeriac and carrot slaw with wholegrain mustard
3 large carrots
1/2 celeriac (ca 400g)
5-6 tbsp mayonnaise (homemade or Hellman’s)
2 tsp wholegrain French mustard
1/2 lemon, juice only
salt and black pepper
Peel and grate the root veg. Mix the mayonnaise, mustard and lemon in a bowl and incorporate the grated vegetables. Season to taste. Eat immediately but keeps for a day or two in the fridge.
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.
I wasn’t sure if this dish should make the cut for the blog or not. Not because it wasn’t good, but because a normal tariflette might actually be better.
This is the first tartiflette I have made, although it is not entirely authentic, and I so wish I had started with the regular all potato tartiflette, but after a fridge inspection I really wanted to use up some celeriac I had left. Ergo this version.
It was really nice, but I might suspect that a regular tartiflette is just as nice or even better. Pretty soon I will make one to compare and report back.
Tartiflette is basically a potatoes au gratin with lardons and rebochon cheese, courtesy of the French, but of course.
However I used cured smoked bacon cut in small pieces instead of lardon and cheddar instead of rebochon.
Celeriac tartiflette, served 1-2
1/4 celeriac, peeled
2 medium potatoes, peeled
3 slices cured smoked bacon, cut in pieces
50 ml creme fraiche
100 ml cream
salt, white pepper
a handful grated cheddar
Cut potatoes and celeriac into thin slices. Bring to the boil in salted water and cook for a few minutes. Drain. Fry the bacon crispy in a frying pan. Grease an ovenproof dish and add half of the potatoes/celeriac. Sprinkle some cheese and bacon on top and put the rest of the potatoes/celerac on top. Finish off with the rest of the bacon and cheese. Mix cream and creme fraiche, add salt and pepper and pour into the dish. Cook for at least 30 minutes in 200C or until the gratin is soft.
I really like soups in the autumn and have to have my fix once a week at least. And basically anything will taste good in a soup, so that is why I want to try lots of different ones.
This time I couldn’t wait to try celeriac soup, as I have a new found love for this root vegetable. I have so far used it in both slaw and gratin, and with great results.
Inspired by this Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall recipe this soup came about. I didn;t follow it exactly, but used the base for it. I always like a bit of cream in a smooth soup, and in this one there is just a tiny bit of cream, but it still gives the soup that velvety consistency and taste.
I served this with childhood memories; bread with the crust cut off, with melted cheese on top. The ultimate comfort food!
Celeriac soup, serves 2
ca 350 g celeriac
1 medium- large potato
olive oil for frying
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 l vegetable stock
3 tbsp single cream
2 tbsp dry white wine
Peel the potatoes and celeriac. Cut into equal-sized pieces. Wash the leek and slice it thinly. Fry the leek in the olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Turn the heat down and add the garlic and thereafter the celeriac and potato. Add the (hot) stock and bring to the boil. Cook until all the vegetables are very soft, about 20-25 minutes. Blend the soup. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and add cream and wine. Leave it to simmer for a few minutes. Adjust the seasoning and serve.