Happy Midsummer!

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Tomorrow one of Sweden’s big yearly feasts will be celebrated: midsummer. Most people will leave the city for the archipelago or the countryside and gather with friends at summerhouses. In the afternoon on midsummer’s night Swedes build maypoles and dance around them, singing quite amusing songs. One of the most popular goes:

 

The small frogs, the small frogs are funny to see,

The small frogs, the small frogs are funny to see,

No ears, no ears, no tails have thee,

No ears, no ears, no tails have thee,

Kou ack ack ack, kou ack ack ack,

kou ack ack ack ack kaa.

Kou ack ack ack, kou ack ack ack,

kou ack ack ack ack kaa.

We knew you would love it! After the dancing we eat, sing and drink snaps. A beautiful tradition is that if you pick 7 different kinds of flowers and put it under your pillow on midsummer’s night, you will dream about the one you love. Elisabeth and I went out in the woods to pick Sweet Cicely (spansk körvel in Swedish, Myrrhis Odorata in Latin) and as we already know who we love we put it in our snaps instead of under our pillows.

Summer in Sweden is short, so when it’s finally arriving, we make a big fuzz about it. Here are recipes for our Sweet Cicely snaps, a yummy midsummer ice cream dessert and a Sweet Cicely granité.

Happy midsummer everyone!

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Seasoned Vodka with Sweet Cicely – A Snaps for Midsummer

  • 1,5 cups / 3,5 dl unseasoned vodka
  • 4 twigs of cicely
  • 2 teaspoons whole aniseed
  • ½ teaspoon fennel
  • ½ teaspoon cumin

Put the twigs of cicely in a bottle and fill up with the vodka. Roughly pestle the aniseed and fennel in a mortar and add. Add cumin. Let it be for 3 days. Filter the vodka through a coffee filter. Serve ice cold.

HaveaYummyDayJune14SusannaBlavarg0873

Cicely and Melon Granité

Makes a great small chilly meal in between courses or put it in a champagne glass and pour champagne over it – yum!

6 servings

  • 1 green melon, Ogen
  • 1 green apple
  • 10 g Sweet Cicely
  • 3½ tablespoons vodka
  • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
  • ½ lemon, the juice

Peel and seed the melon. Divide the melon and apple into pieces of about 3-4 cm/1½ inch. Put the melon, apple and cicely in layers and blend them with a raw juice centrifuge. Mix the juice with vodka, sugar and lemon juice. Freeze everything in a stainless bowl overnight. Take out the bowl in room temperature for 5 minutes and carefully whip up ice crystals with an electric mixer. Whip at the top first and then slowly lower the mixer. Put the bowl back into the freezer until it is time to serve.

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Strawberries with Coconut Ice Cream

6-8 servings

  • 1⅔ cups / 4 dl milk
  • 0,4 cup / 1 dl heavy cream
  • 0,8 cup / 2 dl coconut cream
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 0,8 cup / 2 dl caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons toasted coconut chips
  • 1-2 litres pounds / 1-2 litres fresh strawberries

Boil milk, cream and coconut cream in a stainless steel saucepan. Whisk yolks and sugar. Pour the hot cream over the yolks in a smooth stream, whisk meanwhile. Pour it all back into the saucepan. Whisk and let the mixture simmer to 85˚C or until it starts thickening. Take off the heat, do not let it boil. Pour the mixture into a bowl and cool. For the best result, let the mixture mature in the refrigerator overnight, or let it cool first and then cool it further in the refrigerator before using it in the ice cream machine. Filter and use the ice cream machine. Put the ice cream in the freezer for 1-2 h. Serve with fresh strawberries and sprinkle with toasted coconut.

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