My Grandmother's Meatballs
Milk-and-cream-soaked breadcrumbs and an egg are the secrets to these supertender meatballs from Swedish star chef Magnus Nilsson. Serve them as he does, with lingonberry jam and mashed potatoes.
Norwegian Fish Cakes with Dill Mayonnaise
Baking powder is the secret to the airy texture of these crispy, fluffy fish cakes.
Creamy Spinach Soup with Dill
This soup, adapted from The Nordic Cookbook, has the rich flavor of creamed spinach but a much lighter texture.
Oven-Baked Potatoes Hasselbacken
This delightful potato recipe is named for the place it was invented during the 1950s, a Stockholm restaurant turned cooking school. The key is to baste the potatoes with butter before roasting them.
Quick-Cured Salmon with Salmon Cracklings
This starter from chef Tom Douglas is an almost-instant take on gravlax. While the thinly sliced fillet gets a 30-minute cure in salt, sugar and Aleppo pepper, the skin is baked until it's as crisp as a potato chip.
Swedish Caviar Cake
This caviar "cake" is actually a simple chilled custard that's topped with creme fraiche, onion and two types of caviar. Malin Elmlid's family in Sweden serves this at every holiday smorgasbord, including Christmas and the summer solstice celebration known as Midsommar.
Pickled Fried Fish with Danish Rye Bread and Crème Fraîche
Scandinavians brought the technique of pickling delicately fried seafood (a form of escabeche) to Minnesota and swapped the Midwest's freshwater catch for North Sea herring. Seasoning the fish with vinegar, sugar and spices adds great flavor and firms up the texture; it's an overnight process, so plan ahead.
Swedish Sugared Sweet Pretzels
A coating of butter and sugar makes these tender pretzels especially delicious; they're excellent with tea or coffee.
Slightly Chewy Ginger Cookies
Unlike most shortbread cookies, these are made with whole wheat, which gives them a nice, toasty flavor.
Swedish Butter Cookies
The recipe for these smor bullar--light, crumbly pecan cookies similar to Mexican wedding cakes--comes from the terrific Swedish cook Marge Peterson.
Ricotta Blintzes with Lingonberry Syrup
Tory Miller uses a blast freezer to preserve local produce in the summer and fall. The device rapidly freezes foods before large ice crystals form, minimizing damage to fresh vegetables and fruits, including the lingonberries he simmers in maple syrup for these blintzes. Lingonberry jam makes a fine and much easier-to-find substitute.
Scandinavian Rye Bread
Master baker Lionel Vatinet makes this dense, super-flavorful bread with locally milled rye flour.