Get your fiks
Your first gastronomic adventure must be to go for a fika which basically means grabbing a coffee and delicious baked goods at a fik or cafe. Sweden is known for its cakes and pastries and Stockholm boasts some of the best and most varied eateries at which to find them. Kaffeverket which is close to Sankt Eriksplan is an award-winning spot, known for its array of coffees. Flickorna Helin Voltaire is another good place housed in what looks like a fairytale castle on the island of Djurgarden.
The typical Swedish smorgas or open-faced sandwich is served on only one slice of bread. This tradition dates back to the 15th century when thick wedges of bread served as plates. Try a raksmorgas or shrimp sandwich (above). They’re topped with lettuce, tomato, cucumber and boiled egg and finished off with a dollop of creme fraiche and sprinklings of chopped dill and fish roe.
A feasting frenzy
Market halls and food courts are great places to dine with the locals and you’ll not only find Swedish delicacies but also international cuisine. Hotorgshallen has a number of market booths selling nosh from around the world. Ostermalm Food Hall (below) in an institution in the city, having been around since the 1880s. It’s currently under renovation, but never fear, its stalls and restaurants have moved to a temporary covered market on a nearby square. At urban hangout K25, you’ll find everything from traditional fine foods to Chinese dumplings.
A fishy favourite
No foodie adventure in Stockholm is complete without trying pickled herring (below). The custom of preserving this fish, which is in abundance in the North and Baltic seas, has been around since the Middle Ages. Eat this local delicacy with either crisp bread or boiled potatoes and lashings of sour cream and chunks of cheese.
Find your fare
Food trucks are a new trend in Stockholm. They tend to park up on the island of Sodermalm but you can also follow them around the city on the StreetKak (streetgrub) app. They offer a huge range of cuisines including American at Fred’s Food Truck; Vietnamese from BunBun; Jamaican from Back a yard; healthy and organic meals from Odjuret and Mexican from the El Taco or Good Gringo (below) trucks to name a few.
Take to the streets
Culinary walking tours are always a good way to eat your way around a city. Both Welcome to Sweden Culinary Tour in Stockholm and Stockholm Food Tours offer half-day trips where you can taste traditional fish soup, meatballs (below) – there’s no escaping these moreish morsels – licorice and more.
Dining with the stars
A number of Michelin-star restaurants are dotted around Stockholm. Their chefs, many of whom present Swedish cuisine with a contemporary twist, have made sure that the city’s dining scene is under the spotlight. Frantzen, Mathias Dahlgren-Matsalen and Oaxen Krog (below) were all awarded with two stars in 2016. These are followed by Ekstedt, Esperanto, Gastrologik, Mathias Dahlgren-Matbaren, Operakallaren, Sushi Sho and Volt which received one star.
A royal affair
Sweden’s much-loved prinsesstarta or princess cake (below) is difficult to miss. It’s bright green and lines the window of many bakeries in Stockholm. Inside it are layers of sponge cake lined with jam and custard, and a lot of whipped cream. The cake is covered in a layer of marzipan topped with a sugary, red rose.
–TEXT BY TIFFANY ESLICK
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This article was originally published by Singapore Press Holdings.