Breakfasts

Breakfasts

By
Steffi Knowles-Dellner
Contains
11 recipes
Published by
Quadrille Publishing
ISBN
9781787130371
Photographer
Yuki Sugiura

The Swedes are generally pretty early risers with the working day starting at 8 a.m. – ideal when many aim to leave the office by late afternoon in time to pick up the kids from school. These early starts are particularly admirable given that for much of the year Swedes will wake up, have breakfast and go to work in complete darkness. The only way to get through these dispiriting winter mornings is to wrap up (“there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing” as my mormor always says) and to fuel up, so a good breakfast is pretty essential. A typical Swedish breakfast combines whole grains with proteins like dairy, nuts and seeds, along with some fruit or vegetables for vitamins, fibre and sweetness. It should keep you full for hours but not be impossibly difficult to prepare. Weekends are a different matter, when time can be taken for a leisurely, more indulgent meal.

A favourite breakfast is a bowl of filmjölk or fil. This cultured yogurt product is a good source of protein and low in fat with a slightly sour taste. It can be served with any range of cereals, as well as acting as an ingredient in breads and cakes. I love it served cold in the summer with fresh fruit and muesli, ideally sat on a porch, barefoot, looking out to sea.

Another classic Swedish breakfast, certainly the most popular in cafés, is the open-face sandwich. These can be topped with cheese, ham or paté and normally a slice of veg – tomato, cucumber or pepper – and make for a quick and balanced way to start the day. Eggs can feature as well, usually served hard-boiled, sometimes with a squiggle of Kalles Kaviar (salted cod’s roe from a tube) and a side of crispbread with cheese.

These breakfasts are enjoyed by the whole family – not much distinction is made between adults and children for this particular meal. And though it can of course be a hectic affair at times, breakfast is generally a chance for everyone to gather around the table and wake up, while scrambling for spreads and cartons before then heading off to work or school. The emphasis is on starting the day properly, with a good meal and as a unit. As my favourite line in Lukas Moodysson’s cult film Tillsammans (Together) goes: “Better to eat porridge together than beef fillet alone”.

Featured Recipes in this Chapter

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