It's time to shed a tear and close another chapter on the wonderful world food challenge. This month I have been learning so much about cooking Swedish food - a cuisine I had never even thought about cooking before. I've discovered some amazing dishes which I never would have known about - so thank you to Zane (and the 2 other people) who requested Sweden to be featured.
I'm ending the month with a real gem, it's easy to prepare and makes a fantastic lunch, or dinner (just add some steamed green to the side and you're done for dinner!). I'm posting it at the very last minute this month, because it was a late addition. Rödkål was requested of me by a reader who particularly loved my Smörgåstårta, so I obliged with a version of my own. Rödkål is very simple -it's red cabbage with vinegar, red wine, brown sugar, apple and some spices. Very easy.
I've chosen to use ground caraway in this recipe, so that the caraway flavour is more evenly incorporated into the dish. You can also used caraway seeds in it's place, which will change the dynamic slightly as you will get little bursts of caraway flavour as you chew the seeds. Both options are nice. I have also included the caraway in this dish because it has carminative effects, making it the perfect partner with cabbage. However, if you're still worried about the gassy nature of cabbage then you should accompany this dish with some of my Cabbage-is-my-friend Tea, which I devised back when I was doing Croatia Month and eating a LOT of cabbage!
I have to thank my amazing friend Oscar who lives in Sweden - not only for being a sounding board for my ideas on Swedish dishes, but also for sending me fantastic Sweden themed cooking aids for my birthday!
Finally, I decided that rather than sit down and eat a bowl of tangy sweet and sour cabbage (it is more suited to a side dish than main meal), I would need something to accompany it. Mushrooms are a perfect choice because all the things that go fantastically well with mushrooms are already in the cabbage (balsamic vinegar, red wine), so it was a logical pairing. It was delicious - you really must eat it with the mushroom because the compliment each other perfectly!
Don't worry too much about quantities, just add more or less of whatever you like until you get it the way you like it!
1/4 red cabbage, cored and shredded
1 large green apple, peeled, cored and sliced.
1 cup red wine
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground caraway
4 large field mushrooms (also called Portobello)2 medium cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp nuttelex (or other non dairy margarine)
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat an oven/grill to 150 degrees.
2. Place all the ingredients for the rödkål in a saucepan and cover with a lid. Place over a medium heat and simmer for about 40 minutes.
3. While that is cooking, wash your mushrooms and trim any of the stem that is woody and tough.
4. Cut about 8-10 slits in the top of your mushrooms and insert the slices of raw garlic, you may have to cut out a little wedge of mushroom in order to fit the garlic slices in.
5. Melt the nuttelex in a frypan and lightly fry the mushrooms for a few minutes on either side.
6. Prepare a baking tray with a spray of cooking oil or with a sheet of baking paper. Transfer the mushrooms to the tray and bake in the oven for about 15 mins.
7. Place a mushroom on each plate, season to taste with salt and pepper and then pile it up with a big heap of rödkål.
Serve immediately, serves 4.
This month I'm featuring lots of amazing recipes from Sweden!
Check out my other Swedish recipe posts: