March 09, 2015

Afternoon Fika, Courtesy of IKEA

It is hard to imagine many things more gratifying than a cup of good coffee with freshly baked cinnamon bun (or pulla, as we call them in Finland). It would be wrong for me to say IKEA's cinnamon buns are as good as the ones my mum makes, but they come pretty close! And there was just no way I was going to make them myself, it has been too hot for such marathon baking. These buns take just 15 minutes in the oven, which is a perfect amount of time to brew some coffee, toss some chocolates in a bowl and set up a lazy Sunday afternoon tea. Bliss! 

The New Nordic Diet & IKEA 2/3

I am continuing my IKEA collaboration series with yet another super simple recipe. These bite sized avocado and gravlax wraps make a great party food, but also a delicious lunch. Instead of using the soft thin bread as a wrap, you could also use dark bread (cut up in small pieces, if used as finger food, of course) or a combination of both! The combination of avocado and gravlax is quite mellow, so you may want to considering offering a dab of mustard and dill sauce alongside. This is such a quick and easy recipe idea even if guests are already on their way! 

Avocado and Gravlax Wraps
(makes 20-25 pieces)

soft thin bread, thawed 
gravlax (marinated salmon), thawed
2 avocados
fresh dill, to serve

1. Peel the avocados and remove the seeds. Mash the avocados with a fork. 

2. Spread some avocado on a piece of thin bread and top with 2-3 slices of gravlax. 

3. Wrap the bread into a roll and cut to bite sized pieces. Decorate with fresh dill and serve with mustard sauce. 

March 06, 2015

The New Nordic Diet & IKEA

I am so excited to be teaming up with IKEA to promote the Nordic diet in Australia. Ever since I started this blog back in 2009, I have been doing my bit to help spread the word about the Scandinavian way of eating. Time and time again, I have mentioned the health benefits of a traditional Nordic diet, which includes plenty of seafood, game meat, wild berries and mushrooms and other fresh, seasonal ingredients. There is so much goodness packed into the cornerstones of the Nordic diet that it is about time we start taking real action towards making it familiar to the larger public. 
We all know how ingenious IKEA is in its approach to furniture, and I've always been impressed by their selection of Nordic food as well. I love finding familiar ingredients and I always stock up on a few key products for our home: different types of herring to have with knackebrodlingonberry jam to have with pretty much everything and those handy bread mixes for long weekend breakfasts. 
In this three part series "The New Nordic Diet & IKEA", I'll share recipes using some of those ingredients found at IKEA. I'm starting off with a traditional salmon soup. This is a great dish for the cooler autumn nights we're heading towards. It's simple food and quick to prepare. If you're keen to make it that extra bit healthier, just leave out the cream and make a clear soup instead. Add seasonal vegetables like carrots and swede, and use fresh herbs for flavour. Knackebrod with cheese is a perfect companion for the soup. I can't even imagine having it without some on the side.

Creamy Salmon Soup
(serves 4)

1 litre of water or fish stock
10-15 whole peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) salt
1 onion, finely chopped
6-7 potatoes, peeled and cut to chunks
500g salmon fillet, cut into bite sized pieces
300ml cream
a whole bunch of dill, finely chopped

knackebrod, to serve
cheese, to serve

1. Add water or stock, peppercorns, salt and onion to a large casserole. Bring to boil and simmer for 5 minutes. 

2. Add potatoes and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes are half-cooked.

3. Add salmon and simmer on low heat for a further 10-15 minutes or until the fish has cooked through. Finally add cream and let the soup come to a boil. Turn off the heat, add chopped dill and serve with knackebrod and cheese.

March 03, 2015

A Bright Idea for a Good Cause

Have you seen IKEA's latest campaign

Together with UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), IKEA is helping to give the gift of light by providing refugee camps in Asia, Africa and the Middle East with solar-powered street lights and lanterns – making them a safer, more suitable place for the families who live there.

As part of IKEA’s Brighter Lives for Refugees campaign, for every LEDARE light bulb purchased in IKEA Australia stores between February 01 and March 28, IKEA will donate €1 to refugee camps.

Don't you just love it when big companies give back! 

To help spread the word, please download the Brighter Lives activity sheet, print it out and colour it in. Get your children involved and educate them as well! I would love to see your pictures, so make sure to tag Scandihome on Twitter or Instagram and use hastag #IKEABrighterLivesForRefugees .