The Scandinavian Cookbook by Trina Hahnemann (Quadrille Publishing)

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I’ve been looking at this beautiful cookbook for the past few weeks.  I’ll be the first to admit I’m not familiar with Scandinavian food whatsoever so came at this book with a completely open mind.

The author, Trine Hahnemann is a leading Danish TV chef and food writer and here she introduces modern versions of Scandinavian home cooking with everything from seafood, breads, roasts and stews and of course Danish pastries and butter cookies!  There are 12 chapters and although unlike other cookbooks where the recipes aare divided in to sections like starters, mains etc, here the book is divided into months January through to December as the author tells us in her short introduction that she firmly believes in buying local produce so that your diet should evolve with the seasons. 

Each chapter begins with a stunning photograph of different Scandinavian scenes such as February showing a beautiful snow scene in Norway or a street scene in Stockholm in September.  The photographer Lars Ranek captures these scenes beautifully and I enjoyed looking at the book as much for the photographs as I did for the recipes.

Each recipe starts with a short introduction with serving suggestions.  They are all very clearly laid out, step by step so they are easy to follow with a photograph on the opposite page to the recipe.

So far I have only made this hot chocolate recipe but fully intend to cook more in the coming days especially some of the winter recipes which will go down a treat with the weather we are currently experiencing in Ireland.

The Scandinavian Cookbook by Trine Hahnemann is available from Amazon.


What you need

250g good quality dark chocolate

1 litre whole milk

1 tsp caster sugar

200ml double cream

Melt the chocolate very gently in a small, heavy based saucepan, then add a littile bit of the milk and stir until smooth.  Repeat until half of the milk is used, then add the sugar.  Stir in the rest of the milk.

Bring the hot chocolate to just under boiing point, stirring constantly so that it does not burn.  Turn the heat off.  Whip the cream until it forms soft peaks.  (If you are not servind the hot chocolate immediately, keep the cream cold until you are ready to use it)

Serve the hot chocolate with spoonfuls of the cold whipped cream on top.

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Apple Pie

After being stuck in the house for the best part of a week thanks to the recent snow falls, we were feeling rather sorry for ourselves yesterday.  So while himself and the two kids put up the Christmas decorations, I hid in the kitchen and set about doing a bit of baking.

Continue reading

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Texan Chilli Beef – Winter Warmers Cookalong

It’s taken me a while to write up this post for the Irish Foodies Winter Warmer Cookalong, there always seems to be something else going on and I kept putting it aside so when I noticed on Facebook that December’s cookalong is only a few days away I thought I’d better get my skates on!

This is the first time I have taken part in the cookalong, but when I read what the theme was I knew I had to choose this Texan Chilli Beef recipe which I adapted slightly from a Weight Watchers cook book. Continue reading

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Chocolate Cake – A Toy Show Treat!

It’s that time of year again! Time when children all over Ireland are allowed to stay up late, sat down in front of the television to watch the Late Late Toy Show on RTE1 and make those final adjustments to their letters to Santa (just incase they’ve forgotten something!) Continue reading

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Food Dudes

For the past couple of weeks child #1 has been taking part in the Food Dudes programme in school.  Food Dudes is a healthy eating programme that was developed by the University of Wales in Bangor to encourage kids to eat more fruit and vegetables both at home and at school.  The programme is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and is managed by Bord Bia. Continue reading

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I Love Curry by Anjum Anand (Quadrille Publishing)


If there is one thing that I would say I’m not very good at cooking it would be curry.  I have tried (and failed!) so many times that I’ve lost count.  So you can imagine how delighted I was to receive a copy of I Love Curry by Anjum Anand in the post. Continue reading

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Christmas Cake – The one where Catherine Leyden rang me..

Now that Halloween is out of the way, we can officially mention the “C” word, right? I know a lot of people have already made a start on their Christmas baking, for me this is my first year so I decided to use my mums recipe as I know it’s well tried and tested.  Mum has used the same Christmas cake recipe for over 30 years.  It came from an old Odlums Christmas recipe leaflet that had, over the years, become worn and was falling apart so one year we had the idea that we’d type up the recipe on the computer, print it out and then we’d have it forever and ever. Sounds good so far? Well… Continue reading

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Ideal Homes & Celebrity Chefs…


Two weeks ago, myself and the family got into the car and headed off on an epic journey to the RDS for the Ideal Homes Show.  When I say epic, I mean what should have taken around 1½ hours actually took a little under 3 hours since even though we checked the directions on the internet before we left the house, we still got extremely lost.  It was like a tour of Dublin as we got to see quite a lot of it.  Croke Park, Trinity College, Guinness, I could go on… at one point we were in Ballyfermot, this impressed Child #1 as we saw the Tesco where Mary Byrne (from X Factor for those of you living under a rock!) works. Continue reading

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Rhubarb and Ginger Jam

I’ve been quite lucky this year in that I know a few people who grow different fruits that they don’t actually want/need and so they have passed them on to me over the last few months.  One of the first being rhubarb from a friend of my mum’s who grows it in her garden. 

She gave a huge pile of rhubarb to my mum a few months ago, who promptly donated half of her haul to me.  As usual I hadn’t a clue what to do with it, so my mum suggested washing and slicing it then freezing until I decided what I was going to do.  So I did.  Of course I forgot all about it then, until I went looking in the freezer one day last week and thought I’d found a full tub of ice cream but it turned out to be the long lost rhubarb instead! I left it out to defrost and since I’ve gone jam/chutney mad of late set about looking for a jam recipe. Continue reading

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The chicken obsession continues…


I might have mentioned that we’re thinking of getting hens.  One day last week, I brought the kids over to visit a friend of ours and to see her hens.  She’s had them a while but hadn’t named them (she just shouts “Hens” and they appear!) so she asked the kids if they would name them for her! Continue reading

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