In America we’re always rushing. Rush to and from work. Hurry to the store. Make it to an appointment on time. There’s always something else to do and before you know it we’re living one task until the next, and not appreciating the lovely moments. I find this terrible. All these busy tasks can be wonderful and fulfilling, but if we don’t also take simple moments to relax and enjoy we won’t be able to appreciate either of these very special blessings.
I find beauty in Fika [fee-ka] the Swedish coffee break. Americans love their coffee, however the Swedes not only enjoy the pick-me-up but also love making a truly good cup of coffee. They’ll have a cup of coffee or tea with breakfast, but what they really enjoy is fika, a twice daily coffee break. Whether they are at home, work, or traveling they make time for fika every day. Fika is not only about the coffee, although they’ll sometimes enjoy tea, rhubarb cordial, or glögg as well. There are two other essentials: traditional Swedish food and using the time to relax and enjoy.
“To truly fika requires a commitment to making time for a break in your day, the creation of a magical moment in the midst of the routine and the mundane. Fika is the time when everything else is put on hold.” -Fika by Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall
With modern conveniences it’s rare to find Americans who do most of their own cooking and baking. However, in Sweden it’s looked down upon to not take a little time to at least make your own rye bread or cookies from scratch. With a more formal fika, known as konditori, it can even be the expectation for there to be tortes and seven different types of cookies! The food is so important to fika that it’s commonplace to keep cookie dough in the freezer or butter cookies in tins for unexpected visitors.
Fika is filled with delicious recipes. The apelsinsnittar (orange almond slices) have been an absolute hit around here, with everyone raving about them. When I see someone go into the kitchen they typically come back out with either a cookie or crumbs. The kladdkaka (sticky chocolate cake) is also rather delicious, and reminiscent of America’s brownies. Made with almond flour it has a nice chew and bite to it, and is also gluten-free. The recipes are pretty simple with few ingredients, yet are filled with delicious flavor and variety. I can hardly wait to try out the recipes for cardamom cake, fig squares, sliced chocolate cookies, finnish sticks, almond potato cake, almond tarts, and the list goes on and on!
I’m incredibly happy with the Fika cookbook! It’s filled with adorable illustrations, amazing traditional recipes, the history of fika, and details about living in Sweden. It just filled me with wanderlust. I would love to travel up there someday. Spend the spring and summer outside picking strawberries or making elderflower cordial. Or the winter with all the gorgeous snow, good food, Christmas celebrations, and some hot glögg. I absolutely love this book. Taking a few moments out of my day to enjoy good coffee, food, and relaxation helps make the rest of the day better. Fika is something wonderful and I’ve enjoyed learning about it.
This book was provided to me by Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. All reviews expressed here are solely my own and always will be.