Monthly Archives: December 2014

Creamy Spinach and Walnut Pasta Sauce

Creamy pasta sauces are really delicious and quite filling; perfect after a training session or as any meal! We use the base of this sauce quite regularly and add different ingredients, such as cheese, broccoli, and onion, among others, but today we used spinach. 🙂
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Kale, Walnut and Cheese Pie

For Christmas Eve dinner we made a vegetarian pie. Like we wrote in the previous post, Swedish Christmas food is a lot of meat and not many vegetables. We eat a lot of different types of cabbage in Sweden though and in this recipe we used kale. The pie is very quick and easy to make and we think that even meat eaters would love it on their Christmas table! 🙂 Continue reading

Merry Christmas!

We weren’t originally planning to do another “thoughts” post over Christmas, but we thought we would share a little more about our plans during Christmas and how we will celebrate Christmas in Sweden.

A few things first about Christmas in Sweden:

  • Swedes celebrate on Christmas Eve
  • Santa doesn’t leave gifts in stockings or under trees, but visits your house and gives you all your gifts (nothing technically comes from anyone else, not even your parents – it’s all from Santa, or Tomten as he’s called in Swedish)
  • Christmas dinner is a buffet with cold food (starters) and warm food (main course)
    • The cold food consists of fish, lots of smelly fish
    • The warm food consists of pork, lots of pork (and very few vegetables)
  • Swedes eat rice pudding as dessert

So what does this mean for us?
Well, it means Jason doesn’t eat anything…or nothing traditional anyway. Swedes tend to have a few different types of cabbage, but otherwise nothing is vegetarian friendly – not even the potato dish, which is called Jansson’s Temptation and has anchovies in it. But this always gives us the opportunity to try new dishes. So Sofi has made a pie with green cabbage, cheese, and walnuts, and there will be some roasted potatoes and Brussels sprouts, to make it feel more like Christmas for Jason! 😀

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Other than eating, what do we plan to do?
Jason is planning on cycling a fair amount, and even went out and did 50 km this morning in the rain. Sofi is planning on running (and doing the odd bike ride). We are planning to do a half marathon on the 27th with Sofi’s sister, and hopefully that will burn off some of the extra calories we usually consume during Christmas.

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Jason leaving for his Christmas Eve ride in the rain.

Merry Christmas!
/Sofi and Jason

Our Weekend, Week 51

The last weekend before Christmas and we are both looking forward to some time off work which can be spent eating, exercising and just relaxing. I (Sofi) have actually already done my last day on Friday. The last few weeks of school have been hectic and nothing is better than getting a few weeks off from teaching before going into a new term and the stress that comes in the spring. Jason, unfortunately, has to work a few more days.

On Friday Jason played tennis again. Unlike the badminton last week he managed to win this time 😉 He also baked some lovely cupcakes for his colleagues, very appropriate for Christmas. I think they were very appreciated.

DSC05464In the evening we went to see Interstellar, which both of us really liked. It was a very good way to start the weekend,

On Saturday I decided to go for a run despite feeling tired. I was really not in the mood but I managed to get myself out and afterwards it felt great as always. I think that is one of the reasons why I love running so much, you can only depend on yourself to find the strength to go running when you feel like you have none. It is tough and hard when you stop running for a while and it is hard while you do it and the only way to improve is to just remember how strong you feel afterwards and keep running. This year I decided to run the Gothenburg half marathon to have a goal to train for, which makes it so much easier.

DSC05474After my run me and Jason just relaxed at home before we went into town for some last minute Christmas shopping. In the evening we met up with our friends Sanna and Srdan for some Indian food.

DSC05477DSC05479After dinner we had a walk through Gothenburg and stopped to watch the show at Götaplatsen.
DSC05488DSC05490DSC05492On Sunday we just relaxed, baked a chocolate cake 🙂 and watched a few films. Jason was supposed to play a floorball match but he has injured his foot and needs to take it easy for a few days 😩

DSC05522On Tuesday we go down to SkĂ„ne and my parents, where we are going to celebrate Christmas. We are bringing our bikes and hope that the weather allows us to go for a bike ride/some bike rides 😀

We hope that you all have a lovely Christmas and that you spend it eating and exercising 😉

Merry Christmas!
/Sofi and Jason

Our Weekend, Week 50

So, another week and another weekend have passed. This has been an extremely fun and eventful weekend and we enjoyed a lot of time with our friends. However, being the active beans we are, we still managed to get some training in on Saturday. 🙂

On Friday morning both me and Jason watched Lucia “trains”. For me it is the beginning of the Christmas holiday and there is no better way to get into the Christmas spirit. I watched Lucia at my school where the students from the music program were performing. Jason watched Lucia at work, and that was the official Gothenburg Lucia, which people audition to enter and there is a voting process.

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On Friday Jason also played badminton at work. It is now their weekly activity and they alternate between playing badminton and tennis. It is actually a good idea that they get some exercising in because on Fridays Jason always has fika in the afternoon, so we don’t want him getting too fat. 🙂

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On Friday evening  I went out with my lovely colleagues. Everyone is in need of the Christmas holiday and it was nice to spend some time together outside the school where we usually have to focus on so many things and have less time to just hang out. I tried to leave early but that is difficult when you have so much fun. 🙂

On Saturday morning we got up quite early because we had much to do for our Lucia party in the evening and my (Sofi’s) friends were coming from SkĂ„ne. I was a bit tired from the night before but Jason still persuaded me to go for a 13 km run! It was a great way to get rid of the hangover though and afterwards we both felt great and energized. We ran our usual route across both big bridges here in Gothenburg (Älvsborgsbron and GötaĂ€lvsbron). My run. Jason’s run.

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When we came home we had a quick lunch and then we started baking. We wanted to make some snacks and drinks for our guests. We made Lucia buns, minced pies, bread, hard bread, cookies, Winter Pimm’s and mulled wine.

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Then my friends arrived and we talked a little before we continued with our cooking and they went into town for a little while. They were staying with us overnight, which was so much fun. 🙂 At 6 our guests were arriving and then we spent the rest of the evening eating, talking and having fun! 😀

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On Sunday we had a nice lie-in and then a long breakfast together. After breakfast we went into town and had a nice walk through Haga where we stopped for some fika and some shopping. In the afternoon my friends drove back to SkĂ„ne and me and Jason were two very tired people. 🙂 The rest of the evening was spent on the sofa with a film, trying not to use more energy.
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Now there is one whole week left of work and then we start our Christmas holiday, can’t wait! (I (Jason) don’t get a fixed Christmas holiday. 😩 ) Hopefully there we will share some nice vegetarian recipes for an alternative Christmas dinner.

Have a nice week!
/Sofi and Jason

Falafel

Something that is very appreciated by vegetarians is falafel. We figured it could not be difficult to make your own, and it wasn’t!

Falafel has a lot of flavour and it can be eaten in so many ways. Today we chose to eat some green lentils with our falafel and we made a yoghurt sauce. The falafel was a bit spicy so the fresh youghurt sauce was perfect to eat with it. Continue reading

Our Weekend, Week 49

This weekend was quite hectic and somewhat lazy, if that’s possible. On Thursday we went to IKEA and Mio to buy some new furniture, some of which we made up when we got back and the rest we did on Saturday. We bought a matching bookshelf (they only had one last time), and a new side board to replace the desk in the living room.

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On Friday, we had our friend Sanna over for dinner (dumplings and fried rice), followed by some glögg (Swedish mulled wine) and Lucia buns.

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I (Jason) have been ill most of the weekend; I’ve had what I suspect to be a tummy bug since Thursday. I woke up early on Saturday hoping to be better, and to go for a long ride with some friends (with a 09:00 start about 11 km from home), but I felt much worse than I did Friday evening. 😩 So after telling my friends I wouldn’t ride, me and Sofi made the final piece of furniture before Sofi went to spin (in her new Bianchi socks that she got in her advent calendar), and then my day was spent playing PlayStation and feeling sorry for myself (especially as it was such nice weather)!

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Once Sofi came home, we had a really fresh salad and then we prepared for my work’s Christmas party. The party is held not far from where we live (it is literally like Pocahontas said: just around the river bend), so we were able to get ready at a relaxed pace and then walk to the restaurant.

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They served traditional Swedish julbord (which translates to “Christmas table”, but it is basically a buffet of mostly meat – they barely eat any vegetables at Christmas in Sweden!), with plenty of booze and entertainment. We stayed until about 1 a.m. as we were having a good time hanging out and dancing with my colleagues and friends 🙂

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On Sunday we both felt very tired, and my tummy felt as bad as it did Saturday morning, so it was another day resigned to playing PlayStation on the sofa for me, and a day spent napping for Sofi.

For dinner on Sunday we made a delicious tomato and basil soup with garlic bread. We also made some really nice white chocolate and cranberry cookies, which taste quite festive!

The cookies we really simple to make: 75 g unsalted butter, 150 g caster or light muscovado sugar, 1 egg, 150 g plain flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 150 g white chocolate, 75 g cranberries.

  1. Set the oven to 180°C.
  2. Chop the white chocolate and cranberries into small pieces/chunks.
  3. Whisk the butter and sugar until fluffy.
  4. Whisk in the egg.
  5. Whisk in the flour and baking powder.
  6. Fold the chocolate and cranberries in the mix.
  7. Roll into 16 balls and spread out on some baking paper on a baking tray.
  8. Place the cookies in the oven for about 10 mins, or until golden brown on top.
  9. Take out and leave the cookies to rest for a few minutes before placing them on a cooling rack.
  10. Enjoy!

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This week will be quite hectic again, and we will be preparing a few things for our Lucia party at the weekend. So hopefully we’ll have some nice recipes for mulled wine, Lucia buns, and more cookies next week.

Have a nice week,
/Jason and Sofi