Devil-cats

DSC_0673It’s funny living on Hönö I’m finding out new things about the Island and the islanders all the time. Maybe it’s a coincidence but all the people I work with eat Lussekatter without Saffron. I questioned this meaning that eating a Lussekatt is like eating a cinnamon bun without the yummy stuff. They just shake their heads and give me the ”are you for real?” look. For me it’s one of the best things about Christmas, well it’s actually supposed to be eaten at Lucia. I remember hearing about how Saffran was so expensive when I was a child and my mum would double the amount given in the recipe, it was luxury! Maybe they couldn’t afford saffran on the island?
According to my recipe book Lussekatter are all about the Devil in the shape of a cat. Another weird mid-eval tradition that still live on. There are many different ways of shaping them but usually they look like an ”S”. You decorate them with raisins and sometimes, like I do, with sugar.

If you want to try making them yourself, here’s my favourite recipe:
175g butter
2,5dl sugar, 50g of fresh yeast, 1tsp salt, 2 bags of saffron(0,5gx2), 14dl fluor and 5dl of milk. Melt butter, pour in milk and heat to 37°C. Pour some on the yeast, stir and add the rest. Morcel saffran with some sugar and add to the liquid then sugar and salt. Add fluor and work the dough for 10 min. Let rise for 40min. Roll and shape figures, let rise for another 30 min. Brush with egg, decorate with raisins and sugar. Bake in 200°C oven for about 8-10 min or when they have the right colour. I always add 250g of Kesella but don’r really know the equivalent for it in English, it’s like a yoghurt but more protein and thicker in concistensy, but this is not a have-to.

That big yellow thing

DSC_0650Thought I recognised it but couldn’t remember what it was, hmm something from far back…Oh I know it’s the sun! Went swimming when the sun came up. November has been so gray. Some cities further north have had 1hour sunshine in the whole of November. The hens have been locked in their henyard for the past week due to the birdflu scare but seeing them cooped up in the shade broke my heart and I had to let them out. They ran straight to the sunny part of the garden and started cleaning their feathers and eating grass. I went inside for a glass of water just to run back outside to see what the big hullabaloo kackeling was all about. A cat (not ours)was attacking Bugget! Usually they are good at defending them selfes but she had gotten her head stuck in the net. I chucked the water over the cat and it ran off. Poor chicks they are having a rough time, can’t even enjoy the sunshine without risking their life. Not strange they are on an egg-strike. DSC_0659

Renting out

temperature is dropping

temperature is dropping

9 °C in the water, not at that burning cold sensation yet that you get at zero, but I opted to keep my woolly hat on going in the water. It’s all very grey and dreary out now but still mild.
One of the challenges that most entrepeneurs on the island have is to make their businesses go around all year. We have no problem renting out our flat upstairs during summer but haven’t even given it a thought during the colder months. Then a friend from the UK told us about Airbnb and we decided to try it out. Signed up and in a few days we had people requesting to stay!  So a week ago we had our first international (paying) visitor staying upstairs. Apparently she likes the Northern climate(!) and wanted to avoid the high season prices. She was very happy with her stay and we couldn’t have asked for a better guest. When we first moved in we were going to renovate the whole upstairs but now I’m happy that we didn’t have time. I like the old genuine feeling upstairs, even the carpet in the hallway.

kitchen

kitchen

large bedroom

large bedroom

fantastic carpet...

fantastic carpet…

Baking bonanza!

in the making

in the making

All very traditional Swedish cakes

All very traditional Swedish cakes

Phew! With volunteer work at the second hand shop in Klåva and kids’ christmas bazaar next weekend I thought I might as well get all the baking done today. Two cakes for the second hand shops café and something times two for the bazaar. So I made a Tiger cake which is a vanilla sponge cake with some chocolate sponge inside, it was a very trendy cake when I was a kid. A Tosca cake which is also a spongecake but covered with sliced almonds in a butter, cream and sugar topping, everyones favourite. After that a large batch of cinnamon buns. Worst thing is that we’re not keeping any of it but best thing is it does need tasting! This cake baking business is very serious on the island, I wouldn’t dare serving a cake in the café which hasn’t been tasted…