I'm Just Here To Cook…and Eat!

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When in Jersey…

You get Wawa Hazelnut Coffee. 🙂 Happy National Coffee Day one day late! 


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Sit on a park bench, eat a sandwich, and tell someone you love them

As summer comes to a close, I’m taking the time to unwind and and enjoy what’s left. Life is short. Sit outside, eat your lunch, and make sure to tell the one you love that you love them. You don’t know what tomorrow will bring and don’t want to live with regrets. And turn those boring old lunchtime sandwiches into something enjoyable. 

This week I’ve been packing a new favorite of mine: hummus, mozzarella, buffalo chicken and sliced cucumbers on a roll. Another favorite of mine is turkey, roasted red pepper, tomato, fresh mozzarella with a little mayo in a wrap.  

If you’re home, I love to toast sandwiches. Salami and cheese toasted on a roll with hot banana peppers and olives is great. Or try mixing up grilled cheese by using a mix of Buffalo cheddar and Swiss with salami and avocado. 

What’s your favorite sandwich? Switch up your sandwich routine and enjoy! 

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My thoughts are with family in Florida

And all those impacted by the upcoming storms, past storm, wildfires and earthquakes. I know a lot of great hurricane tips are being thrown around and please make sure to listen to all them. Power will go out quickly and will stay out for awhile so ensure to stock up your pantries with canned food, fresh fruit and vegetables and water. 

One great fresh dish you can make which will keep for awhile outside of the fridge is a simple pasta salad. Just cook up some pasta and mix in tomatoes, artichokes, chickpeas and olives. A dressing of oil, vinegar, salt and pepper will allow the salad not to spoil. 

Keep safe out there everyone.

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Skål! To a gorgeous couple and a Swedish food adventure

The love of two people is truly a magical thing, and I was both happy and honored to witness the love of two friends take the next steps in this thing called life. And in a gorgeous part of Europe no less. I traveled by trains, planes and automobiles to a small town in Sweden and toasted the newly wed couple in a beautiful and memorable celebration. “Skål!” (Cheers!) was shouted over and over while loved ones toasted the happy couple during the dinner portion. Smiles were a plenty, laughs were had (even when we didn’t understand what was being said!) and new memories with new friends were made. The wedding was gorgeous. And the next best part was being able to explore their home country and go on yet my latest food adventure. 

Where do I even begin on this one? First I guess the flight! With a layover in Finland, I can’t say I explored that country at all, just looked out over the beautiful countryside as we landed and grabbed a coffee at the airport. Maybe on the list for a future trip?

But on to Sweden. My friends grew up in a town called Borås outside Göteborg which is where my first stop was. Staying at a hotel in the middle of town, despite how tired I felt from the flight (even though I actually slept!) I needed to get out and explore right away.  The city has a strong history in textiles, with there being a couple of textile museums to learn the history. There were art pieces all around the city, a canal which ran through, cobble stone roads, and a Pinocchio statue called Walking to Boras. I really enjoyed the atmosphere of this city, and the food was so good (I’ll get to that!). The wedding was held at a beautiful venue in the countryside about a half hours bus ride from town. Set in a barn on a lake, a little rain showered the closing of their wedding vows, but the sun shone brightly for them after. 

A train ride north to Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, brought a whole new atmosphere and wonderful city to explore. Exploring this beautiful archipelago must be done on foot, as there’s so much to take in that traveling from place to place by cab would be a huge disservice. Also recommended is some sort of canal ride or tour to really get a sense of the archipelago. Made up of 14 islands, some are far more touristy than others, but we took it all in. A boat ride to the closest of the islands from downtown Stockholm, Fjäderholmarna, made for a great afternoon. This island was a sight to be seen between the water, the greenery and the little shops and artisans, including a small brewery. For the rest of Stockholm, I made sure to take in the sights, visit the all famous Vasa Museum, visited the touristy yet a must-to-be-seen Gamla Stan (Old Town), walked past the Palace and visited some parks. 

I also visited the oldest foodhall in Stockholm. Unfortunately it was under construction, but it was fun to walk around the temporary space across the street. 

Now, on to the best part. The food. And oh my was it good. There are a few key dishes that Sweden is known for. Of course, meatballs is a must have. Served with the all famous lingonberries. 

Or on a stick at a wedding! 

Swedish cheeses on Swedish flatbread. Västerbotten is the most famous, similar to a parmesean. 

Anything fish from fish soup, toast skagen (shrimp on toast), smoked salmon, cured salmon, fish roe, herring and shrimp salad. 

Chanterelle mushrooms were in season so this on toast was a popular dish. With of course lingonberries and cheese. 

Had to try reindeer. 

Swedish chips were a quick grab and perfect snack. 

Candy candy candy. Swedes love their pick-and-go candy bars. My favorite was the heart gummies. 

A variety of local beers and ciders were fun to try. Including the brewery on the island. 

And of course, my favorite, cinnamon buns. I love cinnamon buns. And no you American people, it’s not just an IKEA thing. This is a very traditional pastry to have during their “fika” which is a sociable coffee break. Well, I can say I had my fair share of these. 

So that concludes my amazing Swedish food adventure. I checked just about everything off my food list. “Tack” (thank you) to my lovely friends for inviting me to witness their wedding and for sharing their beautiful country with me. I can’t wait to go back! 

Oh, and no layover in Heathrow Airport is complete without the purchase of plenty of English chocolates. Because English chocolate is the best. And I really need my (good) Dairy Milk fix 🙂 

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A new month begins

A new month is brining new opportunities, one of which is starting in a new job this week. But first, cake. I promised to share with you the themed cake I made for my niece and here it is. Cookie Monster! While it took awhile to frost and I need to work on my eye making (they look a tad misshaped lol), it came out pretty good and she absolutely loved it! Thank you Pinterest for this idea.