Swedish Menu: “Girl with The Dragon Tattoo” Viewing Party
If you are like me (and about 65 million other readers worldwide), you might be a little bit excited about the big movie opening today!
Of course, I am talking about the English-language version of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” The first film in the trilogy based on Stieg Larsson’s book series.
Now, it’s not exactly the feel good movie of the holiday season, but this dark and twisty film sure does inspire a delicious menu for a viewing party. Since the story is based in Sweden, I decided to come up with a complete Scandinavian menu to serve before heading out to the theater this weekend.
Start the meal with a simple appetizer of open-faced cocktail sandwiches. I used rye cocktail bread and topped it with thin slices of smoked salmon. Then I added a dollop of dill-lemon mayonnaise and a sprig of fresh dill for garnish.
Open-faced sandwiches are served all over Scandinavia as a small bite or light lunch. Rye, smoked salmon and dill are staple ingredients in the Swedish repertoire.
Salmon and Dill Open-Face Appetizer Sandwiches
Rye cocktail bread
Top cocktail bread with thin slices of smoked salmon. In a small bowl mix together mayonnaise, chopped fresh dill and lemon zest, to taste. Add a small dollop of the dill-lemon mayonnaise to the sandwich and garnish with a dill sprig.
In this screen shot from the film Lisbeth and Mikael discuss the best way to prepare traditional Swedish Meatballs.
(Wait, probably not… I guess I will have to see the movie to know for sure.)
You simply can’t serve a traditional Swedish meal without meatballs on the menu. This recipe is my absolute favorite. It simply must be served with mashed potatoes and lingonberry jam. I suggest getting a little bit of everything on your fork and enjoy. Heavenly!
1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground veal
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup seltzer water*
1/2 cup fine dry plain breadcrumbs
1 Tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ginger
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
2 Tablespoons butter
In a large bowl combine the beef, veal, and onion; set aside. Pour seltzer water into a medium bowl and stir in bread crumbs to coat; let sit for 5 minutes. Whisk together egg, honey, and Dijon mustard. Add bread crumbs and egg mixture to meat, along with the salt, nutmeg, ginger, and white pepper. Using your hands, mix ingredients together until just combined. Form meat mixture into walnut-sized balls. Heat the 2 Tablespoons of butter in a very large skillet over medium heat. Place meatballs in hot pan and saute on all sides until nicely browned and meatballs are cooked through. These are wonderful served with mashed potatoes and lingonberries.
Note: * Seltzer water makes the meatballs nicely porous.
Tip: If you can find it in your grocery store, sometimes there will be a “meatloaf mix” of ground beef, pork, and veal. This can be used in place of just the beef and veal.
Is this the kind of girl who nibbles on a dainty cookie? I don’t think so…
This is a girl who ends her meal with a shot of whiskey!
This recipe has become my new favorite gingersnap. It is a traditional thin and crisp Swedish cookie with a little splash of danger. You will wonder why you didn’t always add a dash of whiskey to your cookies!
Whiskey Gingersnap Cookies
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup molasses, maple syrup, or dark corn syrup
1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 Tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 Tablespoon whiskey
3/4 cup salted butter, cut into small pieces
4-1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
In a medium heavy saucepan combine sugar, water, molasses, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and cloves. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves and the fragrance of the spices has been released, about 5 minutes. Stir in whiskey and let cool for 5 minutes. Transfer sugar mixture to the bowl of an electric mixer and gradually add butter pieces, blending well to melt butter. Add flour and baking soda. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut dough into thirds. On a lightly floured surface roll out pieces, one section at a time, until they are very thin. Cut with desired shape of cookie cutter and transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake cookies 8-10 minutes, watching carefully as they will burn quickly depending on the thickness. The number of cookies depends on the size of your cookie cutters, but will make about 7-8 dozen.
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