Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha

Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

I hope you all had the best Easter ever! Ours was very quiet and cozy. With one kid down in the flu and a new puppy (four months old now) we were pretty much bound to the house. But as our boy slowly got better, at least we managed to get out for a short hike in the woods yesterday + fika (=coffee and cake) at Gunnebo Slott.

Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

So sorry though, for not posting this recipe before Easter instead of after… With the puppy in the house, and still trying to manage my work with the little rascal sweetie pie around, I’m not that good at planning any blog posts at the moment.

If you’re anything like me you’ve probably had your share of chocolate this Easter anyway. But these bars contain only good stuff, which make them perfect as a small snack in the afternoon when cravings set in!

I was inspired by Japanese flavors when creating this recipe. The bars are only sweetened with a small amount of rice malt syrup and then covered in 70% chocolate. And if you’ve never tried miso in a sweet way before – then you have got to try!! So good! Just make sure you use a good quality miso – preferably organic and unpasteurized. My favorite brand is Clearspring.

A little note on the salt too, cus I had quite a few questions regarding the salt on Instagram. It’s an Icelandic product from Nordur Salt and it’s made with hand harvested sea salt from Breiðafjörður (how exotic does that sound?) and Arctic rhubarb that grows wild in the Icelandic nature. The result? A delicious sour-salty taste with a fresh smell of rhubarb. So pretty to look at too, don’t you think?

If you can’t find it, you can always use Himalayan salt instead – if you like the pink touch to your bars that is. Otherwise simply use flaky sea salt or fleur de sel.

Now, who wants the recipe? Enjoy!

Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha

makes 16-20 bars

200 g walnuts
3 tbsp rice malt syrup
1 tbsp melted coconut oil, unscented
2 tsp sweet white miso or 1 tsp each of sweet white and barley miso
1 tsp good quality vanilla powder
small pinch sea salt
150 g almond flour
2 tbsp unhulled sesame seeds

200 g dark chocolate (70%)
sea salt (rhubarb salt if you have it)
matcha powder

1) Put the walnuts into the bowl of a food processor and blitz for 5 minutes, until the nuts are beginning to turn into a soft butter. Add the rice malt syrup, coconut oil, miso, vanilla and a small pinch of salt and blitz to combine.
2) Add the almond flour and sesame seeds and blitz again until you have a scruffy dough-like mixture.
3) Tip the dough into a lined baking tray and use clean hands to even it out into a square about 1 cm thick. Put the baking tray into the freezer for at least 30 minutes.
4) Melt the chocolate in your micro wave oven or in a bain-marie, and and allow it to cool and thicken, stirring occasionally. This step is important, so that the bars will be thickly coated.
5) Take the walnut mixture out of the freezer and cut it into about 16-20 bars. Pop them back into the freezer to chill again.
6) Take the frozen bars out of the freezer and dip them into the chocolate, using two forks to turn them, then lay them on parchment paper. Sprinkle immediately with matcha powder (using a tea strainer) and rhubarb salt.
7) Once set, the bars can be stacked in an airtight container and kept in the fridge for up to a month. They also freeze really well.

Walnut Miso Bars with Rhubarb Salt and Matcha :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

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Spiralized Sweet Potato Egg Nests

Spiralized Sweet Potato Egg Nests :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Easter is behind the corner, and even if I (and my family!) eat a tremendous amount of eggs all year round, this is the season to start thinking of new interesting ways to cook them! And the recipe I’m sharing today is a recipe totally inspired (although tweaked a little) by one of my favorite accounts on Instagram right now – @leefromamerica – well, she has a super interesting blog too, where she shares her health journey and recipes in a very personal and inspiring way. Love!

Spiralized Sweet Potato Egg Nests :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

I’m sure you know that eggs are super high in protein, but did you know that eggs also contain almost all of the most important vitamins and minerals we need – except vitamin C. Superfood in an eggshell! ;-) Whereas sweet potatoes is a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, potassium, manganese and a very good source of vitamin A and vitamin C. It is also low in Sodium, and very low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. When thinking about these facts – I think eggs and sweet potatoes are a match made in heaven – both nutrition-wise and in terms of flavor!

You should try this – it is SO good! Perfect for a hearty Easter breakfast or brunch, but also as a lunch or light dinner served with a salad on the side. I can also imagine this would be a perfect dish to cook in the oven – if cooking for many, e.g. for an Easter Buffet. Do let me know if you try it – and what method and temperature you used!

Enjoy – and Happy Easter!

Spiralized Sweet Potato Egg Nests

makes 4 nests

2 medium organic sweet potatoes, scrubbed and spiralized
3 scallions (the white part), chopped
4 small organic eggs
1 tbsp coconut oil (unscented)
sea salt

green part of the scallions, chopped
handful of fresh cilantro
crushed black pepper
flakey salt (smoked is very good with sweet potatoes)
cayenne pepper
paprika powder

1) Heat the coconut oil in a cast iron skillet, add the sweet potatoes and fry on medium heat until tender. Add the chopped scallions (white parts) and fry one more minute.
2) Form four little “nests” (use a pair of scissors if your spirals are very long) and crack an egg into each one of them.
3) Cover and cook 4-5 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped scallions (green parts), cilantro, black pepper, smoked salt, cayenne and paprika and serve immediately.

TIP! There is no need to peel the sweet potatoes (at least if using organic) as the skin is very nutritious.

Spiralized Sweet Potato Egg Nests :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

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Carrot & Halloumi Burgers and Avocado Chocolate Mousse + a short summary of my recent workshop

Carrot & Halloumi Burger :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Last Friday I had the honor to meet seven new students at another food styling and photography workshop here in Dagmar’s Kitchen. And as always on these workshops, it is so inspiring to meet other food photography nuts and just sit down and chat about those things that “normal” people just don’t get.

This workshop was sponsored by Årstiderna and they kindly provided us with organic carrots, almonds, olive oil, avocados, fresh berries, coffee beans, goodie bags and more! Thank you again!

Fresh organic berries from Årstiderna :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen
Fresh organic produce from Årstiderna :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

After introducing ourselves over a quick coffee and these lovely Almond Butter Brownies by Amy Chaplin + Berry/Ginger Smoothies we started working on the Carrot & Halloumi Burgers and the Avocado Chocolate Mousse that came to be the center of everyone’s attention for the next four hours or so. I demonstrated how I styled my burger “à la classic burger” with bread, but the participants found many creative ways to style them in bowls and so on. For dessert we had an Avocado Chocolate Mousse which we styled with berries, pansies and toasted hazelnuts.


In case you don’t know I work from my home here in Gothenburg, and that is also where I host my workshops (most times). Working from home (or in a “non-studio” environment) is also what I base my teaching on; how to make simple setups in the home, how to make most use of the available light and how to work step by step with both prop- and food styling.


Thank you so much John, Jonas, Sofia, Emma, Lisa, Malin and Cornelia for coming and for making the day so memorable for me and for your fellow workshoppers.

Now I’ll leave you with the recipes for the Carrot & Halloumi Burgers + Avocado Chocolate Mousse that we played with on the workshop. This workshop was focused on vegetarian food (lacto/ovo) and these recipes are two great examples of vegetable-focused dishes. I make variations on these burgers all the time – sometimes I use beetroot, sometimes sweet potato. But I’m sure you can come up with more ideas!? The halloumi can also be replaced by feta, goats cheese or similar… I hope you like it!

Wishing you all a lovely week ahead! Be back soon.

Carrot & Halloumi Burger :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Carrot & Halloumi Burgers with Hummus and Purple Coleslaw

makes 8 burgers

4 medium carrots
1 medium onion
1 cup rolled oats
3 eggs
2 cups quinoa, cooked (a mix of white and black is perfect)
200 g halloumi cheese, grated
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
3 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

unscented coconut oil for frying

1) Scrub the carrots and peel the onion. Grate the carrot and onion on a box grater or use a food processor with the grating blades attached.
2) Place the grated vegetables in a large mixing bowl. Add eggs and rolled oats and mix everything well.
3) Add quinoa and grated halloumi cheese, spices, salt and herbs and stir to combine. Set aside for at least 30 minutes, so the oats can soak up the liquid and the mixture sets (this step is important for the patties to hold together).
4) Form 8 patties with your hands. Rinse your hands in cold water if the mixture sticks to your hands.
5) Fry the burgers on medium heat about 5 minutes on each side – or until golden on both sides and firm on the inside. Serve with grilled sourdough bread and toppings of your choice. We had chickpea/white bean hummus and purple coleslaw.

Avocado Protein Chocolate Mousse :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Avocado Protein Chocolate Mousse

serves 8

6 ripe avocados, peeled
8 soft medjool dates, pitted
4 tbsp raw cacao
2 tbsp hemp protein (can be omitted)
2 tbsp almond butter
1 tsp powdered vanilla
1 cup oat milk (more to adjust consistency)
pinch of sea salt

70% chocolate, toasted hazelnuts, berries and pansies for topping

1) Put all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or high-speed blender and blend until completely smooth. Add more oat milk if the mixture is too thick.
2) Serve immediately, or keep well covered in the fridge for up to 12 hours.
3) Decorate with grated 70% chocolate, toasted hazelnuts, berries and pansies (if you have them) prior to serving.

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Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola + Slow roasted granola 3 ways

Slow roasted Granola 3 ways - Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola served with Tahini and fresh raspberries :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola served with Tahini and fresh raspberries

Lets talk about granola! My relationship with granola (and müsli) goes way back. We always had my mum’s homemade granola or müsli in the pantry when I was a kid, and even if I didn’t always appreciate it back then (as a teenager I was a sucker for store bought foods – probably because we had mainly homemade stuff!), the love for granola has grown ever since. And at the age of 43 I have tried enough recipes and methods to figure out how I like my granola best. Slow roasted.

Have you tried slow roasting your granola? Slow roasting means roasting on low temperature (approx. between 85° C – 120° C) for a longer time. Since I tried slow roasting the first time a few years ago, I will never go back to temperatures over 120° C. Slow roasting is in my opinion the way to get perfectly crunchy granola every time. It does take a few hours, but since the temperature is so low you can easily leave the house for an hour or so, or simply focus on other things around the house, and the granola won’t burn.

When it comes to temperatures and roasting time, you can experiment with your own oven and the temperatures below. The temperature in your oven may vary slightly from the oven I use, but I’ve found that this works in my oven:
85° – 95° C – about 4 hours roasting time
100° – 120° C – about 2,5 -3 hours roasting time

Slow roasted Granola 3 ways - Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola served with Tahini and fresh raspberries :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Making your own granola is both fun, simple and gives you the power to decide exactly what’s in it. And once it is made and sits in a jar on your kitchen counter it becomes your best breakfast friend (ok, sometimes lunch and evening snack too) for the next week or so.

And even if I like a savory breakfast like scrambled eggs or omelette every now and then, it’s hard to beat the versatility of granola. It’s your perfect addition to almost any breakfast or snack. You can add it to:

• Yoghurt
• Fruit salads
• Smoothie bowls
• Chia puddings
• Ice cream
• Nice cream ;-) and so on…

There are a few more recipes for slow roasted granola here on the blog (try this or this), but in this blog post I’ve put together two of my personal favorites (Basic and Grain Free granola) along with a brand new recipe for a super delicious Chocolate Olive Oil Granola.

And, don’t miss out on my Instagram Granola Party #lovegranolaparty where I will repost the best images of your granola meals! Read more here!

Enjoy! And please share in the comments (or on Instagram) if you have a personal favorite granola recipe!

Slow roasted Granola 3 ways - Basic oat granola served with Raspberry Chia pudding, yoghurt, almond butter and fresh fruits :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Basic oat granola served with raspberry Chia pudding, yoghurt, almond butter and fresh fruits

Basic oat granola

This recipe is super simple. A basic granola to which you can add your own dried fruit, nuts, seeds or fresh berries if you like. This means that everyone in a family can create the breakfast they like using the same granola base.

4 cups instant rolled oats (certified gluten free if you’re intolerant)
1 cup thick cut rolled oats
1/2 cup buckwheat flour

6 tbsp neutral coconut oil, melted
6 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp water
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp powdered vanilla

1) Preheat the oven to 95° C (200° F) and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
2) Mix oats and buckwheat flour in a large bowl. In another bowl whisk together coconut oil, maple syrup, water, sea salt and powdered vanilla.
3) Combine all ingredients and mix well with carefully washed hands or a wooden spoon to coat everything. Squeeze the grains a little between your fingers to get a more clustered result.
4) Spread the granola mixture out evenly over the baking tray. Pop into the oven and roast for about 3,5-4 hours. On this low temperature you don’t even have to stir during roasting – and you will get perfectly roasted and clustered granola without burning. But do check after an hour or two the first time you make it, since the temperature in your oven may vary slightly from the oven I use.
5) Switch off the heat and leave the baking tray in the oven to dry completely while the oven cools.
6) When completely cool, store in an airtight jar for up to a month.

SERVING SUGGESTION: Raspberry Chia pudding, Greek yoghurt, almond butter and granola + fresh fruits/berries on top. This can also be made in a jar for on-the-go breakfasts or snacks. When you put the granola on top of the almond butter it will stay crunchy and dry for up to 24 hours. Bring the fruits or berries in a separate jar.

Slow roasted Granola 3 ways - Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola served with Tahini and fresh raspberries :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola served with Tahini and fresh raspberries

Chocolate, Date and Hazelnut Olive Oil Granola

This brand new recipe is a twist on the Basic granola recipe. My husband was hesitant at first, but not after he tried his first bowl of yoghurt topped with it… It is also super delicious with homemade tahini – a must try!

3 cups instant rolled oats (certified gluten free if you’re intolerant)
1 cup thick cut rolled oats
1/2 cup brown rice flour
3 tbsp golden flaxseeds

6 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp date syrup
3 tbsp maple syrup
2 tbsp water
4 tbsp cacao powder
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp powdered vanilla

1 cup hazelnuts
10 dates, roughly chopped

cacao nibs (optional)
puffed quinoa (optional)

1) Preheat the oven to 95° C (200° F) and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
2) Mix oats, brown rice flour and flaxseeds in a large bowl. In another bowl whisk together olive oil, date- and maple syrup, water, cacao powder, sea salt and vanilla.
3) Combine all ingredients and mix well with carefully washed hands or a wooden spoon to coat everything. Squeeze the grains a little between your fingers to get a more clustered result.
4) Spread the granola mixture out evenly over the baking tray. Pop into the oven and roast for about 2,5 hours. Add the hazelnuts and roast for 1 more hour.
5) Switch off the heat and leave the baking tray in the oven to dry completely while the oven cools.
6) When completely cool, add the dates and store in an airtight jar for up to a month.

SERVING SUGGESTION: Unsweetened yoghurt, tahini (so delicious!), cacao nibs, puffed quinoa and fresh berries.

Slow roasted Granola 3 ways - Grain Free Nut Granola served with unsweetened yoghurt, pistachios and freeze dried pomegranate kernels :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Grain Free Nut Granola served with unsweetened yoghurt, pistachios and freeze dried pomegranate kernels

Grain Free Nut granola

A super delicious gluten free and grain free granola, made entirely from nuts/almonds and seeds. A must try!

1 cup almonds
1 cup walnuts
1 cup cashew nuts
pinch of sea salt

6 tbsp maple syrup
4 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil (I prefer unscented)
pinch of sea salt
1 tsp powdered vanilla
1 tsp cardamom
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup (40 g) shredded unsweetened coconut
2 tbsp chia seeds
2 tbsp sesame seeds

1) Soak walnuts, almonds and cashew nuts in water with a pinch of salt overnight or for at least 6 hours. Soaking the nuts first removes the enzyme inhibitors, making them easier to digest.
2) Preheat the oven to 95° C (200° F). Drain and rinse the nuts and wipe excess water off using a clean tea towel.
3) Place the nuts in the bowl of a food processor or stand mixer and pulse until just coarsely chopped. If using a stand mixer you might need to help a little by scraping the nuts down the sides a few times.
4) In a sauce pan over low heat melt together maple syrup, coconut oil and sea salt stirring continually to combine. Add vanilla, cardamom and cinnamon and whisk until well combined.
5) Add the maple syrup mixture to the nuts in the food processor and pulse to combine.
6) Add shredded coconut, chia seeds and sesame seeds to the bowl and pulse again until well mixed.
7) Spread the granola mixture out evenly on a parchment paper on a baking tray and bake for about 4 hours – or until dry, crispy and golden in color.
8) Let the granola cool on the baking tray or leave it in the oven when turned off to dry completely.

SERVING SUGGESTION: Yoghurt + pistachios and freeze dried pomegranate kernels for color and texture. This granola is also super handy to have in a plastic bag or container in your handbag for those afternoon cravings…

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A Green Coconut Curry with Chickpeas and Beans

A Green Coconut Curry with Chickpeas and Beans :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

Do you ever have a hard time figuring out what to eat for lunch or dinner on an ordinary weekday? We certainly do in our house. With a family of four with different tastes and preferences, we often end up making dishes where everyone can add or remove ingredients to adjust the dish to their liking.

I’ve been thinking for a while about adding a new category here on the blog. A category with recipes and tips for family food. Dishes that are simple and quick to make, and that works for our little family. Perhaps some of them will work for your family too? So, starting today there will be a new category named “simple family food” where those recipes will appear.

This Curry is one of the dishes that we end up making often. And for this blog post, I made a vegetarian version using white beans and chickpeas. But the recipe is super easy to adjust to your tastes and what you feel like at the moment. For example, stir fried chicken or fish is a perfect addition if you have it.

This dish is also perfect for using up vegetables in the fridge. The most important ingredients for maximum flavor are the six first + curry and coconut milk obviously. But feel free to use any root fruits (potatoes are great!), pepper, mushrooms, cauliflower or broccoli florets etc. if you have them.

And I’m really curious to know – do you have kids? Are they picky with food? And if so, how do you solve it? Find some of my tips below the recipe.

Enjoy!

A Green Coconut Curry with Chickpeas and Beans

serves 6

2 small onions, finely chopped
10 cm leek, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
5 cm fresh red chili, finely chopped
a thumb size fresh ginger, finely chopped or grated
2 tbsp coconut oil

2 tbsp green curry powder, or paste
2 cans coconut milk à 400 ml

2 medium sized carrots, sliced
small fennel bulb, finely chopped
500 g cooked beans or chickpeas, or a mix (I used chickpeas and white beans)
1 cup fresh spinach leaves

1/2 tsp sea salt
black pepper to taste
a squeeze of lime to taste

chopped scallions and chives to serve

1) In a large pot heat the coconut oil over medium heat and add onion, leek, garlic, chili and ginger. Sauté for 10-15 minutes until softened.
2) Add the curry powder (or paste) and stir until everything is coated in the spices. Add coconut milk and bring to a boil. Add carrots and fennel and cook for 10-15 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
3) Add the beans/chickpeas and cook for a few minutes. Season with salt, black pepper and lime juice. Add the fresh spinach leaves just before serving and let them cook just long enough to soften, about 1 minute.
4) Serve with bulgur, rice or quinoa + chopped scallions and chives.

TIPS FOR PICKY KIDS! If you have picky kids, try to make the sauce as “basic” as possible and serve the beans, chicken or whatever protein you use in bowls on the side for everyone to choose for themselves. You can also serve stir fried mushrooms, peppers, cooked broccoli etc. on the side so that everyone can choose what they like – or avoid ingredients that they don’t like. My 9-year old son for example literally hates mushrooms, but when served on the side he doesn’t have to worry about them. And if your kids have a hard time eating onion, try grating it so finely that they can’t see it.

A Green Coconut Curry with Chickpeas and Beans :: Sonja Dahlgren/Dagmar's Kitchen

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