We didn’t see any bears though (luckily) but did manage to pick an entire tenlitre-bucket of berries. The forest was also filled with blueberries and crowberries, but no mushrooms and no clowdberries as they demand a wet, almost swampy ground.
This was our ”soft adventure” as it said on the program, and we were divided into three groups, one who went fishing, one who went berry-picking and one who took canoes out on a nearby gorgeous lake. The fishermen actually caught two rainbow trouts and some of the lingonberries were crushed raw with sugar to go with the lunch.
Paddling that canoe out on the absolutely still, silent lake got you as close to nature as you possibly can, gliding just inches above the water, with the forest in autumn colours reflecting in the shiny waters all around you.
The lunch was also were back-to-nature with the traditional pitepalt fried up i a huge pan with cured belly of pork and served with extra butter and lingonberries. Mattias Richtmann, who made us lunch, had also dug down some loin of elk, first wrapped in bark and then in foil, into a cooking pit in the forest and left there for four hours. The meat, seasoned with juniper berries, thyme and rosemary, was delicious, if somewhat overdone. Mattias apologised, but said that the perfect cooking time in this type of cooking can vary from one to five hours.
ps. The recipe for pitepalt will be published here on the blog soon.
West Sweden is famed for its wide variety of top-quality, natural, organic produce. The forests of inland Dalsland provide an impressive range of game, berries, mushrooms and fresh fish, while the countryside bordering the Göta Canal is teeming with farm shops selling locally produced fine cheeses, high-quality dairy products, beer and schnapps. Fertile farmland makes the region ideal for growing crops and raising livestock on sustainable and traditional organic lines. Unique culinary highlights include wild garlic in the spring in Kinnekulle, exclusive roe from Lake Vänern in the autumn and fresh seafood all year round. In the cold, clean and mineral-rich water of Sweden’s West coast, shellfish grow more slowly, developing a fuller flavour, which makes these North Sea shellfish some of the best in the world. Visitors can treat themselves to lobster, mussels, oysters, crayfish and prawns, and learn how to catch and cook them on a unique seafood safari.
The region’s capital city, Gothenburg’s coastal location means easy access to fish and shellfish that stand out on quality and flavour. Add an authentic coffee shop culture that prides itself on its cakes and pastries, and Gothenburg is a food lover’s paradise. The city’s chefs work with local produce and seasonal food, preferably organic. Their modern approach to cuisine rests on Swedish traditions combined with new flavours and ideas drawn from all over the world. Today six restaurants in Gothenburg – 28+, Bhoga, Koka, Sjömagasinet, SK Mat & Människor and Thörnströms Kök – have been awarded a Michelin star. But if you’re looking for fabulous food, there’s far more to Gothenburg than that. Gothenburg was named Sweden’s Food Capital in 2012, with the jury citing the vast array of food the city has to offer, its abundance of local produce and high-quality restaurants, not to mention the fact that the food served in schools and hospitals is nutritious as well as sustainably sourced.
There’s no beating about the bush with Swedish Fia Gulliksson of Östersund—a woman on a mission. She is all about three things; people, passion and produce. She tells us how she brought Östersund, her regional area of Sweden, to international acclaim through sheer will and determination.