A simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat cheese and golden beets

A simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat cheese and golden beets :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

I haven’t been sharing here in a while (again!) and I am truly sorry about that. Both for you – if you missed my posts, that is. But also for myself. I really do love this space. To produce blog posts and share my recipes and thoughts here is a way for me to be creative on my own terms. On my own initiative.

I didn’t really have the time to blog this week either. But while working on a client project the other day, I quickly photographed my lunch. Because I really wanted to share the recipe for this marinated goat cheese by the lovely Amy Chaplin.

Her book At home in the whole food kitchen is definitely one of the cookbooks that I’ve used the most over the last year. And the recipe for this very simple (but oh-so-good!) marinated goat cheese is from the book. It is one of my favourite things to have handy, and it makes any sandwich, salad or pasta meal beyond delicious in an instant!

A simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat cheese and golden beets :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's KitchenA simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat cheese and golden beets :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

This kind of open faced sandwich is something I often stick to for lunch (after all I’m half Danish) when I don’t have the time for, or don’t feel like cooking. A couple of these and a cup of green tea and I’m quickly refreshed and ready to work again.

I hope you like it! Be back soon!

Marinated goat cheese

Recipe by Amy Chaplin

1 8-ounce (about 200 g) fresh goat cheese log, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
8 sprigs fresh thyme
1/2 tsp whole peppercorns
3 garlic cloves, halved lenghtwise
4 fresh bay leaves

1) Lay goat cheese in a single layer on the bottom of a clean and dry glass jar. Pour in enough olive oil to cover cheese.
2) Add a couple sprigs of thyme, a few peppercorns, 2 pieces garlic and a bay leaf. Continue layering the remaining cheese, oil and seasonings until you have used up all ingredients.
3) Lightly press the last layer of cheese down to make sure it’s completely submerged in oil.
4) Seal the jar and place in the fridge to marinate for one week (I usually can’t wait that long though) before using. Bring to room temperature before serving.

TIP! The oil is delicious drizzled over toast or pasta, with or without the cheese, or you can use it in salad dressings.

A simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat’s cheese and golden beets

Danish rye bread or similar
marinated goat’s cheese (above)
golden beets, cooked and cooled
fresh thyme
sprouted garden cress
drizzle of olive oil from the cheese jar
sea salt & black pepper

1) Spread a thick layer of goat cheese on the bread of your choice. Slice the beets thinly and arrange them on top of the cheese. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil, fresh thyme, sprouted garden cress and s+p.

A simple rye bread sandwich with marinated goat cheese and golden beets :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

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A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

I love salads, and especially rustic hearty ones that make you feel good and have you stay full for several hours. This fall I partnered with Västerbottenost (a Swedish aged hard cheese) to create a recipe suitable for wintry (Christmas) gatherings. And this rustic salad is my contribution to the collection of 20 fantastic recipes using Västerbottensost.

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

Find my recipe in Swedish here, along with many other inspiring fellow bloggers’/foodies’ recipes. Explore the Västerbottens cheese site or Instagram #magipå20 for more ideas and recipes.

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

serves 4-6

2/3 cup beluga lentils + 1 1/4 cup water
8 romaine salad leaves, rinsed and roughly chopped
8 kale leaves, rinsed de-stemmed and finely chopped
2 pears, cut into cubes or wedges
1/2 cup dried cranberries
l/2 cup walnut halves

4 slices rye bread + 3 tbsp rapeseed oil
Västerbotten cheese, shaved

Tahini dressing
4 tbsp tahini
5-6 tbsp water
juice from 1 lemon
2-3 tsp flaxseed oil
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup Västerbotten cheese, finely grated

1) Put all ingredients (except the cheese) for the dressing in a blender and blend well. Add the grated cheese and store the dressing in a bowl or bottle in the fridge until using.
2) Rinse the lentils well and cook in 1 1/4 cup water with lid on for about 15-20 minutes. Let cool in the pot (lid on), this way they keep their consistency and shape better. Once cool, drain well and set aside.
3) Preheat the oven to 150° C (300° F). Spread the walnut halves out evenly on a rimmed baking sheet and toast for about 5-10 minutes, until fragrant and crispy. Let cool.
4) Cut the rye bread into cubes and fry in rapeseed oil in a skillet until fragrant and crispy.
5) Put all ingredients for the salad in a large bowl and make sure everything is well mixed. Drizzle the tahini dressing over the salad and finish with the croutons and shaved Västerbotten’s cheese.

TIP! If you find it difficult to digest raw kale you can rub it with lemon and oil, or let it “soak” for a while in the tahini dressing prior to using.

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and VästerbottensostSonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: A rustic Caesar salad with tahini dressing, rye bread croutons and Västerbottensost

Black enamel prep set from Falcon available at Babyssimo shop

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Raw sprouted buckwheat porridge with figs and cacao nibs

Raw sprouted buckwheat porridge with figs and cacao nibs :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

A good breakfast is without doubt the best way to start the day if you ask me. I simply don’t work without breakfast. It is my favorite meal of the day, and whenever I get the chance I have two breakfasts (especially when I workout) – or sometimes brunch instead of lunch.

And even if I love a warm breakfast like scrambled eggs, fried eggs or cooked porridge during the colder months, I’m smitten by this raw porridge made of sprouted buckwheat. With lovely ripe figs and cacao nibs it’s been on repeat on my breakfast table lately.

Raw sprouted buckwheat porridge with figs and cacao nibs :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

I almost always have a jar of sprouting buckwheat and/or other grains/beans/seeds on my windowsill. The buckwheat is great either to sprout for this porridge, or (when sprouted 2-3 days) added to salads or stews. I also love to have a jar of mung beans sprouting as they sprout so fast – they’re ready to use in about 36 hours only.

This porridge can be made of either buckwheat that has been soaked overnight or buckwheat that has been sprouted 2-3 days. Soaking and/or sprouting not only removes phytic acid, but also activates the nutrients and significantly increases the vitamin and enzyme content of grains, beans and seeds. Turning them into nutritional power foods in a few days – so go ahead and start sprouting!

I hope you like it as much as I do. Be back soon!

Raw sprouted buckwheat porridge with figs and cacao nibs

serves 2

1 cup raw buckwheat groats (soaked overnight or sprouted 2-3 days)
1 avocado
1/2 tbsp raw honey
1/4 tsp powdered vanilla
pinch of sea salt (optional)
juice from 1/2 lemon
water to adjust consistency

fresh figs, thinly sliced
hemp seeds
honey or agave syrup

1) Mix all ingredients for the porridge in a blender until smooth. Add water to adjust the consistency to your liking.
2) Top the porridge with figs, hemp seeds and honey/agave syrup if you like a sweet touch. Blackberries are lovely with this too!

Raw sprouted buckwheat porridge with figs and cacao nibs :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

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Roasted cauliflower soup with caramelized onions, kale and toasted bread crumbs

Fall has definitely set into Gothenburg. During a morning walk with a good friend this morning, we stopped and admired the hundreds shades of gray on the shore where the rocks meet the ocean and the ocean meet the sky.

Everything was grey. Only different shades.

But there have been yellows and oranges too. The other day I went to Maria’s little village outside of Alingsås where we spent the day shooting outdoors for her next book. Admiring the trees turning all shades of yellow.

Fall means soup to me. I crave warm things for breakfast as well as for lunch. And the cauliflower soup I’m sharing with you today is one of my go-to-recipes when it comes to soup.

The topping was obviously created to match the shades of the season :) This is so good for a weekday lunch as well as for a Sunday supper with friends or family. Enjoy!

Roasted cauliflower soup with caramelized onions, kale and toasted bread crumbs

serves 4 for a main or 8 as a starter

1 large cauliflower head, cut into smaller florets including the stalk
1 small leek, cut into chunks
1 yellow onion, cut into chunks
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

2 cups hot vegetable stock
3 tbsp cream of your choice (I used oat cream this time)
juice from 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper to taste

1) Preheat the oven to 200° C (400° F). Place all vegetables on parchment paper on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast on the middle rack of the oven for 20-25 minutes or until softened and fragrant.
2) Transfer the roasted veg into a blender. Add vegetable stock, cream and lemon juice and blend until smooth.

Serve the soup with caramelized onions, kale and toasted bread crumbs.

Caramelized onions and kale
6 red onions, peeled and cut into slices
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
a large handful of kale (any kind), tough stems removed and leaves torn into smaller pieces

1) Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the onions. Sauté for 10 minutes or until beginning to brown. Add salt, lower heat slightly, and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until onions are soft and caramelized. Add the kale and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.

Toasted bread crumbs
4-6 slices stale sourdough bread (levain or similar)
3 tbsp olive oil or butter

1) Tear the bread into fine crumbs with your hands. Heat the olive oil or butter in a skillet and toast the bread crumbs until crunchy and fragrant.

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Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel

Let me just start by saying – this is not your ordinary cake. It is completely free from gluten, dairy and refined sugar. It is filled with healthy fats, fibres and minerals from coconut, cacao and dates. Plus – it is super simple to throw together. Can you believe that?

One of my friends asked me (with a smile of course, but did I sense a little fear too?) when I posted this cake on Instagram the other day: – What? Can’t we even be allowed to have cake made with loads of sugar and butter anymore?

I think there is nothing wrong with sugar and butter (in fact I especially love butter, and use it often) as long as we keep it for treats once or twice a week. But if a cake can be made a little healthier – and equally good, or even better than the less healthy counterpart – why not go for the healthier alternative?

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel

This cake have everything you can ask of a cake. First of all – my two favorite things combined, chocolate and coffee – woo hoo! And with no grains or added sugar, this is a great one to share with family and friends to help convince them healthier food is the future.

When I saw this cake on Nordmat a while back, I instantly bookmarked it. It was one of those recipes I just knew I had to try. I’ve baked it a few times now, and only made some minor changes to the original recipe. For the cake base I’ve tried both maple syrup and coconut sugar and both work very well. If using maple syrup your cake will become a little sweeter and a tad more moist than with coconut sugar. Either way, this is a very rich and moist cake without that overly sweet aftertaste.

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel

I prefer using a neutral coconut oil, so that the coconut flavor doesn’t take over. But that is up to you and your taste buds of course! And if you don’t have an espresso machine, just use a strong solution of instant coffee or regular (strong!) coffee. I also like to add a tablespoon of instant coffee powder to the caramel to get that full-bodied coffee flavour.

Now go ahead and try this cake for your next gathering or birthday! Or make half a batch, bake in silicone muffin molds (200° C for about 12-15 minutes), top the muffins with the caramel+berries and enjoy on an ordinary Monday evening!

Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel
Adapted from Nordmat, original recipe by Megan Guertner/Pur Oslo

serves 8-10

3/4 cup coconut flour
3/4 cup coconut sugar or maple syrup
3/4 cup (raw) cacao powder
1 tsp sea salt
1,5 tsp baking powder (aluminium free)

4 shots espresso, cooled (about 3/4 cup)
6 eggs, lightly beaten with a fork
3/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil (preferably neutral)
3/4 cup coconut milk

Salted espresso caramel
1 cup dates (medjool or regular), soaked for 3-5 hours and drained
3 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp almond butter
2 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil (again neutral)
1 tsp powdered vanilla
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp instant coffee (the powder), optional
2 shots espresso, cooled (about 1/3 cup)

1) Preheat the oven to 200° C (400° F). Line the bottom of three round springforms (approx. 15 cm/6 inches) with parchment paper and lightly oil the sides with coconut oil.
2) In a medium sized bowl mix all the dry ingredients for the cake. Add the wet ingredients and stir until well combined.
3) Divide the mixture equally in the three springforms and bake for about 18-20 minutes on the middle rack, or until a until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
4) Place all ingredients for the caramel in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth and shiny.
5) Assemble the cake with the caramel between the three layers and decorate with seasonal berries or fruit.

Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen :: Coco crazy chocolate cake with salted espresso caramel

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