Around the world in 12 dishes – Sweden

by Jen in around the world in 12 dishes,craft,food

We departed from the UK and have travelled to Sweden this month. When I thought about Sweden clearly my first thoughts were of IKEA. I know people say that they love IKEA…but really, really do. When we were thinking of names for our first child “Billy” and “Poang” were on the list. Despite my undying love for all things IKEA I knew that I had to expand my family’s horizons. After all, I assumed that Sweden was more than well designed fabrics and furniture. 

I was right. I discovered one of the most magical and beautiful children’s books I have ever seen, “Children of the Forest” by Elsa Beskow. This book is over 100 years old. I immediately recognized the stunning artwork…I have seen those tiny mushroom hatted children before. I feel in love the instant I held the book in my hand. My daughters fell in love with the book too. The book follows the lives of a family of little people who live in the roots of a pine tree. Elsa Beskow captured the spirit of Sweden in the book. The family goes berry picking and foraging for mushrooms, they play in the water, fend off a snake and preserve the food for the winter. The older children even go off to school, where they are taught by the owl and their classmates are other woodland animals.

“Mrs. Owl taught them the language of all that squeaks, swims, flies or runs. She taught them to listen to the message of the wind, and to see the approach of spring even before the first snowdrop.”

After reading this book I was inspired to make something with mushrooms and berries. Unfortunately, this is not the best time of the year for mushroom picking in Canada. There is still snow on the ground in some places and certainly cold weather. I decided to skip the mushrooms and head straight for some blueberries…with Swedish waffles.

Swedish waffles with blueberry compote and whipped cream

Just under 1/3 cup of butter (3 ounces)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/5 cup of flour (1/5 of a cup is 3 1/5 tbsp)
400 ml cold milk

1/2 pint blueberries
1 tsp honey
1/2 cup heavy cream

1. Melt the butter and then allow to cool.

2. Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.

3. Add half the milk to the dry ingredients and incorporate.
4. Add the remaining milk and the butter, mix until there are no lumps.

5. Pour levelled amount into pre-heated waffle press. Bake according to your waffle press.

HOT TIP: This batter is thinner than “North American” style waffles thus the waffle didn’t bake evenly, I simply flipped the waffles and baked them a little bit more until they were golden on both sides. It really depends on your waffle press.

Blueberry compote and whipped cream

1. Place blueberries in small saucepan with honey.
2. Simmer over medium-low heat until blueberries break down to a consistency you like.
3. Pour heavy cream into a chilled metal bowl, whisk until soft peaks form.

We served our waffles as dessert. Commonly, Swedish waffles are made in a press that is shaped like a flower with heart shaped petals. I have to say I enjoyed the texture of these waffles. They were lighter and airier than the waffles we usually make. Served with the blueberry compote and whipped cream these waffles were delicious. I’m sure this is what the children of the forest must eat for breakfast and dessert.

To add to our Swedish adventure, the girls made their own children of the forest. Using bare peg dolls, they created their own families with mushroom cap hats.

 All they needed were a few markers, some tissue paper and white glue.

We will be taking them outside with us and playing in the garden with our new little friends. I can hardly wait to see where we are off to next. 

Hope you enjoyed our latest adventure. Please visit the other blogs participating in Around the World in 12 Dishes. There are many other amazing recipes and crafts inspired by the beauty of Sweden.

Remember, we would love for you to link your own posts to the linky. Or, let us know about your adventures in Sweden, just leave your thoughts in the comments section or on our Facebook page. If you are a blogger and participate be sure to grab our handy button for your blog. We’ll even pin your post to the Around the World in 12 Dishes Food Pinterest Page or our Craft Pinterest Page!

Around the World in 12 Dishes

Around the world in 12 Dishes

vi ses snart! ha en bra dag!  
Kim @ The Educators Spin On It April 1, 2012 at 11:05 am

Your waffles look delicious and I love you wooden people to go along with the book, can’t wait to check that one out. Thanks for sharing.

Juggling With Kids April 2, 2012 at 1:18 am

The children of the forest wooden people turned out so cute! I’ll have to look for that book next time we go to the library! The waffles look delicious as well! Great post!

Ticia April 2, 2012 at 9:42 am

I love their peg dolls! So cute, but I’m a sucker for anything peg dolls.

And blueberry waffles, yes please!

Valerie @ Glittering Muffins April 2, 2012 at 12:56 pm

Lovely! I’m starting to think of stopping in next time and requesting some waffles, lol. Cute little dolls, very creative and the book looks very nice too :)

Peggy-Sue April 2, 2012 at 9:30 pm

Wow – thank you for featuring this book – it looks wonderful! I’m definitely picking this one up – you just can’t find anything cuter than little people with red mushroom hats. Thanks too for the great recipe idea and I’m loving the little peg people the girls made!

Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas April 4, 2012 at 9:35 pm

I am still waiting for this book from the library! The illustrations look lovely!

Greening Sam and Avery May 4, 2012 at 6:11 pm

What an amazing looking book! Thanks so much for linking up to my nature book list on the Must See Children’s Book Page. This is a great addition. I will have to see if my library can get a copy of it!

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