Category Archives: drinks

Glöggmingel with Madame Fromage


It’s getting cold out there so it’s time to cook comforting stews, soups with dark rye bread or have tea with cookies crawled up on the sofa. Another combo that works is to host a Fika & Cheese party with glögg. And this is exactly what Tenaya Darlington aka Madame Fromage I did in Philly the other day.

I arrived by bus with loaves of rye bread,  thin crisps with caraway seeds and ginger cookies while Tenaya unwrapped incredibly luscious cheeses that I had been dreaming of for weeks (and still do). Together we fired up some spicy glögg (image above) just before our guests filled the kitchen/ living room with joyful cheese & baking conversations while we were munching away.  One of our guests, cheesemaker Sue Miller from Birchrun Hill Farm came with some of their ‘mind blowing’ blue cheeses. Another guest, Marisa McClellan from Food in Jars brought pickled kohlrabi and honey-sweetened jam that matched our cheese & fika board beautifully.

In Sweden we would call this kind of party glöggmingel (mingle with mulled wine), a party that often is held in December prior to Christmas.

Want to host a party like this? Then you should continue reading about the party over at Madame Fromage’s blog. Tenaya brings you behind the scenes and reveals how to successfully host a party like this.

I especially want to thank Tenaya and Todd for having me in your kitchen. It was wonderful to finally meet you in person. And thanks to everyone who came and made this event into an inspiring and fun party.



related links

Fika – The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break by Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall
Di Bruno Bros. House of Cheese: A Guide to Wedges, Recipes, and Pairings by Tenaya Darlington (I love this book!!!)
Glögg - Swedish Mulled Wine
Lussekatter recipe by Anna Brones with illustrated shapes by me
Pepparkakor (ginger cookies) by Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall at Ecosalon
Knäckebröd (thin crisps) with wild fennel – baked in Sicily
Fika & Cheese Party (original invitation)

Fika & Cheese Party with Madame Fromage (Philadelphia)

A Fika Party with Madame Fromage (Philadelphia)

Saturday November 7, Tenaya Darlington aka Madame Fromage will be hosting an afternoon Fika with me at her house in Philadelphia. And we both would love you to join us.
For the occasion, we’re designing a cozy mulled wine gathering with fika treats and cheese. There will be a variety of bread and cookie samples  from the fika book and Tenaya will specially design a luscious cheese board to match the treats. There will also be a baking demonstration and I will show you one of the best ways to make glögg (Swedish mulled wine). Tenaya will give you her personal stories behind the selected cheeses.

We are both super excited to see you there. And I’m also thrilled to finally meet Tenaya, who has been one of my favorite blogger and food writers for years. Last year we collaborated on an illustrated cheese calender, which resulted in four seasonal cheese posts (see links below).  I’m super honored that she wants to host this little cheese salon with me, for you.

The Fika book and Tenaya’s wonderful cheese book will be on sale at the party. You can pre order them to a special price when you purchase your ticket. I will also have a few fika and cheese prints for sale at the party.

If you want to know more about fika and how to pair it with cheese you are most welcome. We have 15 spots for this special fika hour.

price: $20 person
Total spots: 15

Psst did you miss this? Well you can easily host one yourself! Here, Tenaya brings you behind the scenes and reveals how successfully host a Fika & Cheese party at home.

A little background about your hosts

Tenaya Darlington aka Madame Fromage is a cheese blogger and writer in Philadelphia. Her latest book, Di Bruno Bros. House of Cheese: A Guide to Wedges, Recipes, and Pairings. At the moment she is finishing up her next cookbook which is a cocktail collaboration with her brother André Darlington.

Johanna Kindvall is a blogger and illustrator from Sweden who lives in Brooklyn. Her latest book is Fika: The Art of The Swedish Coffee Break, with Recipes for Breads, Pastries, and Other Treats (Ten Speed, 2015), by Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall.

The Cheese Calendar 
Winter Blues: A Pairing Party for 8 to 12 (part 4)
Smoke and Funk: A Fall Cheese Board (part 3)
Late Summer Cheese Picnic (part 2)
Your Spring Goat Cheese Primer (part 1)

Guest Post: Cocktails by Walczak & Heiss

I first met Marek Walczak in Sweden, late 2002. He was showing one of his interactive art works “Apartment” and at the opening he mistook me for my twin sister (who was the curator of the show). Ever since then we have lived and worked together. Besides other things we have designed and renovated 2 houses from scratch and we have also built a tiny little studio house together.

About five years ago Marek started to work with Wes Heiss who he has known for a long long time. Like me, both of them have a background in architecture. Besides many other things, Wes knows how to build cars and violins. Over the last few years he has also become an expert in operating 3D printers of various kinds. Together, Marek and Wes has become a perfect team that can design and build really cool media-based public art installations.

One of their latest works (which I made some illustrations for) is an art installations in Denver, called 14th Street Overlay. This installation consist of 23 individual small cast bronze sculptures of optical instruments like binoculars, iPhones and movie cameras that are embedded along 14th street. Each object gives you a view of the existing street merged with narratives and projections of the past.

I really enjoy working with Marek & Wess. I also enjoy their skills in making cocktails and drinks. With them, there is always a new drink that needs to be mixed and tested. It could be a classic but also something totally new. With their help I have picked out three drinks from their cocktail collection, The Saint, Tatanka (a Polish classic) and Gingerish.


UPDATE: Just heard that Walczak & Heiss won  won the commission for Public Art for the gardens of the Berry Center, Wyoming. Congratulations to both of you!


* St. Germain is an Elderflower liquor which you probably can substitute with something similar. You can also switch out this part with equal amount of Elder Flower cordial.

** Zubrówka is a Polish vodka flavored with bison grass.

*** For best flavor, infuse the ginger with the whiskey for at least 4 hours.


More drink links…

Pomegranate Molasses & Gin recipe diagram on kokblog

Akvavit recipe diagram on kokblog

Engineers guide to drinks post by Flowing Data

Drink: Pomegranate Molasses & Gin


I can’t believe this year is almost over. Time goes quickly when you are busy having fun. 2013 has been great in many many ways.

At the beginning of the year Anna Brones and I started to work and develop recipes for our first illustrated cookbook together. The book is scheduled to be published by Ten Speed Press, Spring 2015.

For the second year in a row I made illustrations for LRF, Lantbrukarnas Riksförbund (a major Agriculture organisation in Sweden) for their yearly brochure. This summer,  my illustrations were seen in both Art of Eating (no. 91) and The Foodie Bugle (2nd issue). In July The Culinary Cyclist, with illustrations by me, was published. The book is written by Anna Brones.

In July I was part of arranging the 2nd triennial exhibition Instrument at the old mill in Lövestad, Sweden. Over 30 artists from around the world participated. One of my tasks was to bake 20 loaves of breads for the grand opening of the exhibition and to sew the cover for the catalog.

In the Autumn I illustrated the future of public transportation for SL (public transportation company in Stockholm). And just a few weeks ago I created graphics and illustrated icons for Courtney Carver’s site A Simple Year that launched earlier this month. Another exciting job was to draw an illustrated ginger cookie recipe as a Holiday Card for Tara K. Reddi, vice president of Marlborough Gallery. The card was printed in letterpress.

On top of everything else I have been in the middle of renovating our new place, with periods of times without a proper kitchen and drawing space. I’m quite amazed that I have been able to create and work on so many projects and recipes with all the dust of a  major renovation project going on around me. I have to say at times it has been quite extreme, especially when I had to take a more active part in the renovation (e.g. tiling, plastering, sanding, painting, laying and sanding oak floors or just holding the other end of a tape measure etc etc).

After all this I now feel like having a drink. The above illustrated drink recipe is at the moment my absolute favorite drink.

I wish you all a Happy New Year.

Some Pomegranate Molasses links

Muhammara – a spicy walnut dip by Anissa Helou
Pomegranate Molasses Glazed Eggplant by Olga Massov
Homemade Pomegranate Molasses by Cafe Fernando in Istanbul

also check out Walczak&Heiss’ illustrated Cocktails

Autumn Foraging: Apples

In my neighbor’s garden there is an old apple tree. The tree and the garden is in need of care. It always hurts my heart when I see fruit of any kind fall to the ground before anyone even thinks of taking care of them. As nobody actually lives next door I think its ok to pick them. So I went over there to have a look. The apples didn’t look that great and they would probably be terrible in most things, I thought. I took a bite and smiled. It was a crisp bite and the taste was sweet and sour at the same time. This abandoned tree was in fact a Granny Smith or at least something very close to it. Granny Smith may not be my absolute favorite but an apple like this is excellent in an apple tart or a nutty manchego salad.

Apples in general are very useful in cooking, for both savory or sweet dishes. A chicken for example is really flavorful when roasted whole filled with apples and prunes. Different kinds of preserves such as apple compote, apple butter and apple chutney are fantastic treats that can be served with many different things, such as a sweet flavor in oatmeal, as a side to meat or together with cheese on bread. While growing up I remember having only apple compote with cold milk as an afternoon snack.

Then there are endless amazing cakes and pies that can be baked with apples. There is of course always the classic Tarte Tartine that was created by two sisters after a successful accident in the kitchen. A more unusual apple pie is the south Swedish version (Skånsk Äpplekaka) that is made with rye bread crumbs. It may sound strange but its absolutely delicious served with vanilla sauce.

If you have a lots of apples you should really consider making your own apple juice or cider. If my neighbor’s tree would give me more apples, I would definitively brew hard apple cider. Sandor Ellix Katz says, in his book “wild fermentation”, to brew apple cider is one of the simplest alcohol fermentation you can make. You just need fresh good quality apple juice (preferably juiced by yourself), a jug, a cheese cloth and a rubber band. He calls it Spontaneous Cider.

Last year I got really inspired by Joanna at Zeb Bakes when she made apple cider vinegar with the scraps and pieces that were left over after making apple cake. I think it’s really clever to use something that normally would be thrown away. Joanna’s vinegar was inspired by Carl Legge‘s experiments which he describes very well in his post Fermenting Revolution 2 – Apple cider vinegar. The below recipe is pretty much the same as Carl’s formula (Sandor Katz suggests less sugar in his book).

I think my neighbor’s Granny Smith are perfect for this recipe.

Granny Smith Cider Vinegar

  • ½ cup (about 120 ml) sugar (I used half regular sugar and half brown)
  • 4 ¼ cup (one liter) water
  • 6-12 small Granny Smith apples* (more or less if you are using scraps or whole apples)

Heat up the water together with the sugar. When the sugar has dissolved into the water take off the heat and let cool. This is important as hot liquid will not let the natural yeast start the process. During this time you can prepare the apples. I used whole apples, which I rinsed and cut into one inch (2-3 cm) pieces. But you can use leftover bits and pieces as well. Place the apples in a large glass jar or other suitable container. It’s good if the jar has a wide opening, according to Sandor Katz a larger exposure to air helps the process.

When the sugar solution is cool enough (about room temperature) pour it over the apple pieces. Place a plate on top to weigh down the apples (I took a bowl and a mortar). Place the container in a warm place. To avoid flies etc cover with a cheesecloth or kitchen towel (fastened by a rubber band). Stir and taste the apples every day. (After about 3 days I could see small bubbles and the flavor was sweet and fizzy. This as a good sign, the fermenting process is doing what it should do).

After 7-10 days, the apples have done their job and you will need to strain them through a sieve. Pour back into the jar and let stand for another 7-14 days. Continue to taste your batch regularly. It will soon start to taste more like vinegar than cider. When you are happy with the flavor, strain the liquid again and pour the liquid into sterilized bottles and seal them properly. The film that will be created on top is called “Mother of Vinegar” that can be used as a starter for your next vinegar.

* You can of course use any other kind of apple in this recipe. You can also make vinegar with other kinds of fruit and berries. Sandor Katz mentions in his book that almost any fruit scraps and peels etc can be used for making vinegar. He suggests pineapple, grapes or even overripe bananas.

This article was originally published at EcoSalon, 2 October 2012.

In this Autumn Foraging series see also Autumn Foraging: Rose Hips with a recipe of Rose Hip Sherry.