So here are my thoughts on our little feast Friday evening.
The Snaps was one of my favorite things. It tasted kind of sweet even though there was no sugar in it. The spices were lovely, and you could not tell it was alcohol (even though it was basically straight vodka). So dangerous but tasty. The Swedes seem to know what to drink for alcohol. I will definitely make this again but drink it cautiously.
The rhubarb cordial (rabarberdrinkar) was surprisingly boring. I could not really taste the rhubarb nor the ginger. There was an odd texture to it too. The color was pretty though. But sadly I will not be making this again.
The Swedish Sandwich Layer Cake (Smörgåstårta) was interesting. You were supposed to add mineral water to the bread before assembling it. I skipped this step because the bread and the fillings seemed quite moist. But when it was time to cut the cake, the bread was pretty dry. Also I decided not to follow the directions and cut the crust off completely. I left the top and bottom crusts on, and it was hard to cut through the bottom crust. So I would suggest following these directions. The cake was fascinating. The flavors were exotic and fun. It has a lot of calories though so I may not make it again for that reason, but it certainly is a festive and uniquely Swedish dish, so maybe for a special Swedish occasion? I am trying to freeze the leftovers in individual portions. So let me know if you want me to save one for you.
Tom definitely enjoyed his grilled T-bone steak and his Hasselback Potatoes. I did put some minced garlic in the butter-oil mixture so that probably helped. But I will make these again. I did use large Russets so it took 15 minutes longer than the recipe said.
The cakes for the Strawberry Cake, Midsommar cake and Strawberry cake (Jordgubbstårta) were obvious failures. But Better Homes and Garden yellow cake recipe came through, and the filling and coating for the Strawberry Cake were quite good. I think the filling was a shortcut for making a custard filling which probably would have been tastier and less runny. But the flavors were really good. The strawberries came from our local Bow Farmers Market the day before, and they were just perfect. Again, a lot of calories (but worth it), and I am counting on Tom to finish the cake. It is interesting that I saw these exact recipes posted on multiple Swedish Midsommar facebook posts. I followed the recipes exactly and had catastrophic results. The pigs and chickens enjoyed the failures though.
So, all and all, a great feast with unique and exciting flavors. It was a lovely evening with sunny weather and a luscious hot tub afterwards (with Snaps). I hope everyone had a great midsummer/solstice and will have a memorable summer.
PS I decided to follow the example of the Weaving A Life blog I follow and mention what book I am reading. Honestly this will not happen very often as I do not get much time to read. But I recently finished Blackwater by Kerstin Ekman and Rosalie and Truffle by Katja Reider. Currently I am reading Swede Among the Rednecks by Ulf Kirchdorfer. All are highly recommended for very different reasons.