How do you make real Swedish meatballs? Or real Swedish pancakes? (Meatballs are, well, personal. As for pancakes, you'll find the "official blue and yellow" recipe below.)
If you want to know the exact answer to questions like these (and who doesn’t?), you’ll soon have that. The Swedish Foreign Department asked the Swedish Institute and Restaurangakademien (the Restaurant Academy) to produce Sweden’s first official cookbook.
“Yes, that’s what you can call it,” says Minister for Trade in the Swedish government Ewa Björling, who added some of her own personal recipes to the venture. This cookbook is no magnificent work that will become a bestseller for Christmas, it’s more a collection of recipes in English that will be available online under the heading “Swedish food”, as a part of the campaign “Sverige – det nya matlandet” (Sweden – the new country of food). So, back to the question how does one make meatballs in a way that’s satisfying to the Swedish state?
“I don’t think anybody will ever be able to say. The great thing about cooking is that it’s all about the person cooking. What perspective that person has. I grew up with meatballs made with pork, but in the Stockholm region it is beef. But a meatball isn’t really Swedish, it’s Turkish,” says star chef Paul Svensson.
Here is, however, the recipe for real Swedish pancakes according to the cookbook. The recipe yields 10 portions.
Ingredients: 3 eggs
100 g flour
1 teaspoon sugar
2 – 3 cups milk, salt.
Instruction: Mix eggs and flour until even. Add sugar, salt, and milk. Let the batter rest for about an hour. Then perhaps add some more milk. Fry in butter in a pan over medium heat. Serve with cloudberry jam (400 g cloudberries and 200 g sugar) and whipped cream.
Pancakes – to make them like a proper Swede, follow the recipe above and serve with “hjortronsylt och vispgrädde” (cloudberry jam and whipped cream) for the ultimate Swedish experience.