Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Oh Bliss!

I have truly been missing the Finnish summer in rainy Scotland -- especially the visits to the archipelago. Getting a chance to spend one of the last summer weekends by the sea was bliss. Nothing beats the fresh sea breeze and a traditional sauna.


Usually crayfish is enjoyed during August in many Nordic countries. I have written about how much I enjoy crayfish before, but I can never get enough of it. Served with toast, dill butter and akvavit, it marks the end of the summer. Schnapps with seafood has never been my ideal, but once again I gave it a go. We had Skåne Akvavit, which is a Swedish brand of vodka spiced with caraway, anise and fennel. I would rather have it with pickled Atlantic herring, than crayfish.


In September chanterelles, the meaty orange coloured fungus, can be found under layers of moss in the archipelago. Distinctive in its colour and thus easy to find, it is the ultimate autum treat. Lovely creamed or in a sauce, in a quiche or in a risotto or with pasta.


I went to the woods and found a few chanterelles. It may not look like there's a lot, but the flavour compensates for the quantity. Local food at its best and highly relaxing wondering around the forest looking for the bright coloured spots amongst the dark green seas of moss.


CREAMED CHANTERELLES

1 tbsp butter
150 g chanterelles or chestnut mushrooms (or as much or little you can find), finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
a handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp soy sauce
150 ml double cream (and a dash of milk if it thickens too much)
salt and black pepper

Clean the mushrooms and finely chop. In a saucepan melt the butter and add shallots and saute until soft. Add the chopped parsley and mushrooms. The mushrooms will shrink in size, but don't let them loose texture. Add the cream and the soy sauce. Let it simmer for 10 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper.


My mother served the Creamed Chanterelles with beef burgers and new potatoes. So simple, so delicious!


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