Lagom tasty grönsaksmedaljonger.
Rumor has it that a high school friend of mine makes it a habit of spending 2 hours in L.A. traffic to have breakfast at IKEA. Does IKEA-Sweden even serve breakfast? Sweden prefers a less hardy breakfast alternative. If they did it would probably be half of a bun served either with a slice of cheese or a slice of ham, never together and never more than one slice. Too have more than one slice or a combination of the two would be met with looks of disapproval as it wouldn’t be considered Lagom, rather a flagrant indulgence. So, I wonder what on earth drives my friend to brave the stop/go traffic to eat breakfast at IKEA? He says, pancakes.
It’s been about 6 years since I last ate an IKEA meal. There isn’t anything particularly wrong with them, basic cafeteria food with a nice price tag. I just never get around to it. But, on my last trip hunger got the best of my friend and I. I ordered the salmon with boiled carrots-ugh and veggie medallions. The salmon was as dry and tasteless as I expect of a cafeteria, but still edible. What I didn’t expect were the veggie medallions. Yum, really yum! Licking my lips we went back to shopping at the second largest IKEA on earth.
On my way home I stopped by the corner store to pick up some milk and other basics. I began an inner dialogue with myself about bread. You see I spent the previous week stuffing myself like a Thanksgiving turkey with white bread slices. In a fit of good intentions I decide to not buy bread. Thinking if I don’t have it I won’t eat it. The same tactic that works with great success in my battle against Lay’s potato chips. About two hours later my stomach starts to grumble. One can not live on veggie medallions alone. So, what do I throw together? Bacon, eggs and Bisquick pancakes. If you can’t eat one highly processed carb. replace it with another, instant PANCAKES. Foiled again.
Homemade American Pancakes
I have two distinct and formative memories from childhood in regards to pancakes. The big, cast iron wood stoves of times past, were still found here and there, in particular at my Great Aunt’s house. She would make my cousins and I pancakes in animal shapes, best trick ever. I use it myself now a days. However, she had this thing about Maple syrup. She would ask if I wanted syrup. As I hate syrup more than ketchup I would say, no thank you. She would then contemplate my answer for about 5 seconds and decide I didn’t know what I was saying and proceed to pour a farmers helping over my animal pancakes. Being old school Mom would say, don’t be rude EAT IT anyway.
Thus pancakes became a problem for me until my cousin’s Great Uncle served us FLAP JACKS off his wood stove at his log cabin. That I suddenly loved pancakes irritated my moms’ sense of logic.
-But Flap Jacks and pancakes are the same thing!, Sigh
-Nuh uh these are FLAP JACKS! And they taste better!, replied the six year old.
What the Great Uncle did right was first off call them FLAP JACKS. The adventure those two words conjure up in a child’s mind are indescribable. Secondly, he didn’t force syrup on me. I talked about those Flap Jacks for years to come.
So, here is my favorite pancake recipe given to me by a fellow expat many years ago. Unfortunately I don’t remember her name.
120 gr plain flour (I also use whole wheat flour. More flavor in these babies)
Pinch of salt
1 TBS Castor Sugar
2 eggs separated.
20 gr butter, melted
200 ml full fat milk
1 tsp baking soda
Sift the flour, salt and sugar into a bowl, make a well in the center. Add the egg yolks, melted butter and milk and beat with a whisk until well mixed, no lumps. In another bowl whisk the eggs white until stiff, then fold them into the batter with a spoon.
Pour into a pan on medium heat. I use a teflon no butter. Keep an eye on the heat if it is too warm they turn dark before the inside is ready. If too low the inside won’t cook through. The pancake is generally ready to turn when bubbles develop on the surface and begin to collapse.
Serve with butter, syrup-only ig you like it!, bacon and eggs. You can even serve the pancakes with peanut butter and jam. or why not with a couple of those Danish chocolate wafers they put on toast.
I make the animal shapes by pouring the pancake mix with a measurement pitcher. Just keep it simple. For example a cat face with whiskers or the kids first initials.
IKEA Veggie Medalions
If a restaurant makes a dish I really like I will go home and try and suss it out. It’s a necessity. I am an Expat, living in Sweden, grown up in Southern California with a lot of other countries under my belt. In the perfect world I would be able to hop onto my private jet on a whim. But, the reality is I don’t have a private jet so all culinary whims must be solved with DIY ingenuity.
It turns out I wasn’t the only one who has fallen in love with these medallions. After making up a recipe based on the ingredients list found on IKEA’s web page, I did a general search and found that several other people have been looking for just this recipe. So I stand confirmed in my discovery. IKEA Veggie Medallions are the SH–!
This recipe is my first attempt, needs some eventual adjustments, but is still worth eating.
2-3 medium potatoes shredded
Broccolli one small head broken into small bouquets.
1/2 onion chopped and sauteed
3 inches of Leek sliced and halved.
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese grated.
1/2 cup Whipped cream
1-2 TBS parsely, chervil (optional)
Salt and pepper
Begin by shredding the potatoes while you begin to boil the broccoli, I don’t bother with peeling the potatoes unless they skins are bad. When the broccoli is nearly done add the shredded potatoes for a couple of minutes to blanch. Drain the potatoes and broccoli into a colander and drain thoroughly! In the mean time saute your onions, and prepare the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl except the whipped cream. Then add the potato mixture to the bowl along with the whipped cream and stir.
I believe this is where my first attempt could have been improved. I should have used more whipped cream to make a creamier result. (Increase in whipped cream is represented in the ingredients list)
Bake in the oven on 400F/200C for about 30-40 minutes in stiff cupcake papers or use a cupcake tin.
Changes found here.
Alternatively chop the potatoes into really small cubes to make a chunky mashed potato with the whipped cream, paremsan and sauteed onions. Then add the cooked broccoli and the other ingredients mix well then put into the cupcake papers and bake until they slightly brown. This just might be the better way to do it. I will know soon enough and report back.