Open pesto sandwich (life-improvement, guaranteed)

Open Pesto Sandwich. Waltzingmatilde.com I really love freshly made pesto. Yeah, I know, who doesn’t? It’s a thing of perfection, right? Like Michelangelo’s Sistine chapel. Or The Mindy Project. Every time I eat a plate of freshly boiled pasta, tossed with hearty green homemade pesto I think: “This must be one of my all time favorite meals.”

Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. With that in mind it’s sort of strange that it took me 35 years to come up with the idea for this sandwich. The open pesto sandwich. Yeah, let that sink in for while. The. Open. Pesto. Sandwich.

Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com The only thing you have to leave out is the garlic, but that’s a price you’re willing to pay, believe me, in order to have pesto for breakfast. Or midnight snack. Or whenever. Oh, and another thing: it takes you about four minutes to make this life-altering sandwich.

Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com With a regular pesto you blitz all these great ingredients together and they form this magical wonder sauce. And you, you forget that they were ever even stand-alone ingredients. In this recipe they stay close but still separate (the equivalent of the type of relationship a parent hopes their 14-year-old has with their new boyfriend or girlfriend).

Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com In this way, you let the ingredients mingle happily with each other, but you also let them shine individually. The sweet, salty and crunchy almonds say “Hi!” to the soft cream cheese. The crumbly umami-packed Parmesan is hitting it off with the light herby basil. And the sourdough and the olive oil are, of course, the hosts of this great party.

Waltzing Matilde is making her Open Pesto Sandwich. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com

Open pesto sandwich (life improvement, guaranteed)
 
You don’t need any measurements for this one. You just throw stuff on to that toasted bread like there’s no tomorrow. Okay?
Author:
Ingredients
  • Sourdough bread (or any bread you like!)
  • Salted butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Parmesan – shaved, thinly sliced or grated
  • Basil – shredded, chopped or small whole leaves
  • Almonds and/or pine nuts – toasted and then roughly chopped
  • Some good olive oil
  • Flaky sea salt
Instructions
  1. Toast your bread. Toast the nuts until golden in a medium hot pan with some olive oil and sea salt (4-5 min, shake the pan frequently). Set aside to cool a bit. Dress your toast with butter (no, you should not skip the butter), cream cheese and shaved Parmesan. Sprinkle the basil over it. Chop up the nuts and sprinkle on top. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle some sea salt. And then: Enjoy!

Buckwheat Crepes with chocolate peanut butter and black currant jam! Or: The hipster version of PBJ!

Buckwheat pancakes with peanut butter and black currant jam. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com The autumn is now in full anti-bloom and it’s time for some serious cocooning. Light summer salads is, literally, so last season and we’re now ready for some heavy comfort food. In other words: It’s peanut butter jelly time!!

Ok, so the PBJ tradition that stems from the 50’s, the all-American invention, the sandwich Elvis ate a few too many of, is made with cheap white pre-sliced bread, some sugary, brightly colored strawberry/grape jelly and a big slab of peanut butter. And when pressed together it makes a perverse sound. Correct? Correct.

Buckwheat pancakes with peanut butter and black currant jam. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com But it hasn’t become a sandwich evergreen for nothing, right? Behind that white-trashy curtain hides a winning combination. Right? You have the rich, creamy peanut butter marrying the sweet, sticky jam. It’s an opposites attract-kind of thing. It’s the freakin’ yin and yang of sandwiches!

That’s why we, the conscious middleclass of the West, mustn’t discard the whole concept, but should instead come up with a PBJ recipe that are in line with the latest hipster food trends.

Waltzing Matilde making buckwheat pancakes with peanut butter and black currant jam. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com And that my friends, is exactly what I’ve done. I present to you: The Healthy Hipster version of PBJ!

Here it goes: You take organic peanut butter scented with a hint of chocolate. Yes? And you let it swirl around with some nice dark, tangy, silky, elegant black currant jam. Yes? But where exactly is this swirling gonna take place, you ask. On a buckwheat crepe of course! Yes? YES! (Peanuts: healthy fats, vitamin E, niacin, folate, manganese, anti-oxidants; Buckwheat: high quality protein, naturally gluten-free; Black currants: anti-oxidants.)

Everyone that I’ve made taste this lavish/healthy ménage a trois has swooned. Like literally. Like, they’ve made weird noises. My little brother for example walked back and forth in my kitchen and repeatedly said “Oh my God”, “Oh my God” (while I sat calmly in my chair with a pleased look on my face and said “Yeah, I know”).

Buckwheat Crepes with chocolate peanut butter and black currant jam! Or: The hipster version of PBJ!
 
When I crave these flavors so badly that I don’t have time to make crepes, I eat this combo of spreads on some buttered spelt crisp bread. It’s so good you will LOL! If you for some reason don't want to/can't eat peanut butter, roasted tahini w salt works great here! Ps. Buckwheat crepes is a bit more dense than crepes made with white flour, so if you're a lover of fluffy crepes I just wanna give you a heads up.
Author:
Ingredients
Buckwheat Crepes (Gluten free)
  • A heaping ¾ cup/ 2 dl of buckwheat flour
  • A scant ¼ cup / ½ dl rice flour
  • A scant ¼ cup / ½ dl corn flour
  • 2 large eggs or 3 small
  • 2 heaping cups / 5 dl of milk
  • ¼ cups / ½ dl of water
  • A good pinch of fine salt
  • Some butter/coconut oil/olive oil for frying
To serve with
  • Crunchy peanut butter scented w chocolate (I used Urtekram's organic. If you can't find any chocolate PB, just add a bit of cacao powder to your regular PB.)
  • Black currant jam/ black currants boiled gently with sweetener of your choosing.
Instructions
  1. Take a medium sized bowl and put in the flours. Add the eggs on top. While whipping, pour in about half of the milk. Whip until smooth, then add the rest of the milk. Add salt. If you have time/patience, let sit for about 10 minutes. (The texture should be a bit thicker than when making crepes with all-purpose flour.)
  2. If you've never done crepes before: Add fat to a pan. When really hot pour in the batter, fry until golden beneath, then flip it over. Fry for about 2 more minutes.
  3. Serve warm with a good dollop of peanut butter and the blackcurrant jam. And some hot, strong coffee of course!

 

Swedish Chokladbollar with a twist! Totally yummy AND totally Healthy – plus gluten free AND sugar free – plus kids love it AND grown-ups love it!

Ingredients for Waltzing Matilde's Swedish Chokladbollar For many Swedes “Chokladbollar” (lit. chocolate balls… yes, I can see how things might be lost or found in translation here) is the very first thing you learn how to bake. Because it’s ridiculously easy and, in fact, a no-bake-just-stir-affair. Think of it as a white trash version of raw food.

Waltzing Matilde's Swedish Chokladbollar. Photo by Marcus Svanberg Most of us can remember the afternoons when we came home from school and made obscene batches of chocolate ball dough, skipped the forming of balls-part, and just ate it with spoons straight out of the bowl. And how we, while eating, nodded our heads in sheer wonder, because this stuff was just TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE.

Toasting nuts and seeds for Chokladbollar. Photo by Marcus Svanberg. Waltzingmatilde.com Ok, now, 25 years later, I still like Chokladbollar, but they could do with a bit of improvement, a bit of refinement. Also, it’s actually really easy to make them much healthier than in the innocent age of my youth, the 80’s, when refined sugar was considered harmless, not unlike the Amphetamine-spiked “energy-pills” in the 60’s. 

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Mashed sweet potato with browned ginger & rosemary-butter Or: the most fascinating mash!

Ingredients for sweet mashed potato. Waltzingmatilde.com If you’re a foodie, and I guess that you are since you’re reading this, you can sense that this is a killer combo, right? The sweet, earthy, friendly flavors from the sweet potato combined with some fresh tangy ginger and a little bit of green herby rosemary. All nested in with loving care by browned butter. When autumn give you stuff like this, you can’t bad-mouth autumn. You don’t even want to.

Browned butter with ginger and rosemary. Waltzingmatilde.com I learned this recipe a long time ago, at a cooking class with one of Sweden’s most talented food journalists/bloggers/cooks, Lisa Förare Winbladh. (I gave my husband, then boyfriend, this cooking class as a surprise present. He hates surprises and this was when I still thought I could straighten him up and make him like them. Now, I’ve stopped trying). 

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