Summer is here!

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FINALLY! It’s summer in London and I’m loving it. Plus it’s the World Cup and I’m of course supporting both Sweden and England. And soon Wimbledon starts too.

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London summers are always busy, probably because we try to embrace every outdoor eating and drinking opportunity we can find this time of year! And that’s exactly what I embraced the past week.

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On Tuesday it was lovely and sunny in the evening, so a friend and I had pre-dinner prosecco and snacks on the roof terrace. So lovely and something I hope to enjoy many more evenings this summer. As it was a work night and I hadn’t have much time to prep, I for once used shortcuts. Something I’m usually reluctant to do, but it was actually really nice to avoid the last minute scramble I usually have to endure to get a dinner going. Instead I turned to the supermarket for nibbles so all I did was take it out of it’s packaging, which meant I only had an easy main course and some whipping to do. Amazing!

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The main course was a proper Spaghetti Carbonara (will post the recipe soon) served with a simple green salad, and for pudding I made Eton Mess with store-bought meringues.

On Thursday two colleagues invited me along to a work event so it was networking, champagnes and canapés all evening (part of it outside!).

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On Friday I met up with Gaby and Rowena for an al fresco dinner at Ham Yard Hotel. So lovely. Eventually it got cold but then we moved inside to a comfortable table with a sofa.

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Saturday and Sunday were more relaxed; I could catch up on chores and sleep. Had time for face masks (very important), sunbathing on the roof terrace, watching the football and a nice long walk at dusk. Oh, and a trip to the cinema. I feel thoroughly recharged and ready for the next few busy weeks until I go home to Sweden at the end of July.

Friends, sunshine and Michelin star lunch

Last week was quite busy work wise so I took it so I didn’t book that much in during the week.

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On Monday I made Jerusalem artichoke soup and had a chilled evening.

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Tuesday I made steak sandwiches and finally finished the last season of Homeland. I’m so far behind on series at the moment, but slowly catching up. Tackling Billions next.

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I also found British strawberries in Waitrose so had to have that for pudding, with pouring cream and sugar. So yummy!!

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On Thursday Ro and I went to Photo London to check out some cool (and some weird) photographs, and afterwards we had steak frites in Côte Brasserie.

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Friday after work I went straight to my friend Anna’s in Surrey and was spoilt rotten with lots of lovely food. We had fish pie, lasagne, asparagus with a little vinegar (new for me and totally yummy) and the most lovely salad. The next day I woke up to asparagus omelette and lovely coffee in Moomin mugs!

 

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On Saturday I managed to combine sunbathing with watching the royal wedding for a little while before heading out again for drinks.

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Sunday I took the train to Kent and had lunch with my friends there at a lovely Michelin star restaurant I’ve been wanting to go to for ages. It was amazing and I can’t wait to tell you all about it in a different post.

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The weather was lovely so I managed to take in some of the lovely seaside and countryside as well before heading back to London for dinner with a friend. More weekends like this, please!

Almond cake with whipped cream and strawberries

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When I saw this beauty (then served with almond sorbet and blackberries) on the great Swedish food blog; Skånska Skafferiet (The Scanian Larder), I knew my colleagues would love it.

And I seem to know them pretty well, because this cake was the first to vanish when I baked for the office this time. I had also made a scrumptious lemon cake and some chocolate pots (recipes to follow).

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Almond cake with whipped cream and strawberries, serves 6-8

Translated from Anna’s recipe.

The cake:

250 g almonds, whole

250 g caster sugar

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

(pinch of salt)
butter for the tin

To serve:

300 ml lightly whipped cream

200 g strawberries, washed and halved

Pre-heat the oven to 180C. 

Grind the almonds. Beat eggs and sugar, salt and vanilla until pale and fluffy using an electric whisk or Kitchen Aid. Fold the ground almonds into the fluffy mixture, keeping some to coat the tin. Butter a round baking tin/dish and coat with ground almonds. Add any remnants to the cake batter and pour it into the tin. 

Bake in the middle of the oven for 55-60 minutes. Remove the cake and let it cool completely before decorating it with whipped cream and berries. 

Grädda i mitten av ugnen i cirka 55-60 minuter. Ta ut kakan och låt den svalna ordentligt innan du spänner av kanterna. 

Vanilla muscovado icecream with lime marinated strawberries

One particular Swedish food blogger is in my opinion the Queen of Icecream. This recipe is courtesy of her.

Both myself, Maria and Daniel can vouch for the excellence of this icecream, because we managed to almost finish the whole batch after having had both starter and maincourse – and that is quite something.

Vanilla muscovado icecream

After Annika’s recipe.


400 ml cream

200 ml whole milk

1 vanilla pod (I used 1 tsp vanilla instead)

4 egg yolks

150 ml light brown muscovado sugar

Beta the egg yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy. Heta up the milk and cream with the vanilla. Pour the warm half and half over the fluffy eggs while stirring. Place the mixing bowl in a bain marie and whisk while the mixture thickens. Let it cool down, then place covered in the fridge over night.

Freeze the container to put the icecream in. Then pour your icecream mixture into the icecream maker for about 45 minutes. Transfer to the cold container and freeze for at least an hour before serving.

Lime marinated strawberries

300 g fresh strawberries

1/2 lime, the juice and perhaps some zest

2 tbsp icing sugar

Clean the strawberries and remove the green. Cut in halves. Place in a bowl and add the lime juice (and zest). Mix in the icing sugar.