I love Swedish food and want to share my enthusiasm for Swedish food with anyone who wants to listen!
I live in the UK but I have visited Sweden regularly for nearly 20 years. During my visits I enjoyed some fantastic and distinctively Swedish food and so, as a keen cook, I wanted to make some of the dishes when I got back home. Unfortunately in many cases I found it hard to find recipes in English, so it was a lot of work learning to cook Swedish food. When I stopped full-time work, teaching physics, I decided to set up a website to share my recipes with anyone who might be interested.
With a shortage of material in English I started learning some Swedish! At my age it is not easy learning a new language and my spoken Swedish is still pretty pathetic. (Swedes can normally understand my Swedish, but I can't understand their replies!) Anyway, my Swedish is now good enough to read recipes fairly well.
Help from other Swedes
Armed with a little bit of Swedish and a few examples of my recipes in English I approached a few Swedes for help including three Swedes who had written cookery books in English (Margareta Schildt Landgren, Anna Bonde-Mosesson and Susanne Jonsson). Fortunately nearly everyone I asked agreed to help get the site established.
Am I alone?
Above: an extract from Hemlagat's menu, a new Swedish restaurant in Seoul, Korea
When contemplating opening the site I asked myself many times whether I would be alone in being enthusiastic about Swedish food. I came to the conclusion that there would probably be more English speakers who would like to know more about Swedish food, but they might be scattered across the world. As a result I decided to try and provide recipes that could be followed by English speakers anywhere in the world.
SwedishFood.com opened in June 2013. Since opening the site I have discovered that I am certainly not alone! Our readership has grown steadily since we opened and it continues to grow. Each month we get readers from well over 100 countries!
Many readers tell me about their fond memories of dishes cooked by grandparents and how they would like to pass some Swedish recipes on to their children: for them food is an important way of staying in touch with their roots.
We also get a lot of readers for whom English is a second language. Interestingly about 10% are in Sweden! Some immigrants to Sweden would like to learn more about Swedish food and as their Swedish is not yet good enough to follow recipes in Swedish so they use our site.
My enthusiasm for Swedish food is partly due to my Swedish students. For many years I organised a programme for visiting 17 year old Swedish students, who spent three months studying in the UK. It was through this that I learnt so much about Sweden and Swedes. They often suggested places to visit and things I should try and it was this that led to so many visits to Sweden.
I am also grateful to all the Swedes who have helped me with setting up the site, providing background information, sending photos and suggesting things I should try. Some are acknowledged alongside recipes and articles but many others worked quietly behind the scenes.
Finally, of course, a big thank you to my wife who is very patient whilst I test recipes, photograph food and drag her off to Sweden again!
Enjoy trying Swedish food
I hope SwedishFood.com will inspire you to try cooking some Swedish food. Enjoy the site.
SwedishFood.com is run by a not-for-profit company set up to help English speakers around the world who would like to learn more about Swedish food. If you like the site please help us to promote it and bring Swedish food to a bigger audience by following us on:
Editor and Founder