Thursday, September 20, 2007

Finally, Suovas

Smaklust 07 mosaic

I've promised this for a while, so finally. I went to Smaklust a few weekends ago, a large food fair with locally produced food from all over Sweden. I also went to a workshop about suovas, a very special product that's part of the Slow Food Movement. It's from Lapland - the very Northern part of Sweden. Suovas is reindeer meat that's dry-salted and then smoked. Sometimes it's also dried afterwards for a short or long period of time. It's a family tradition, so all suovas is made slightly differently. It's traditionally made to be the perfect snack when you're out herding reindeers. Nowadays, I say it's just great food.

Laps eat a little at a time, and often. Food is not very ceremonial, but a necessity. And out of respect for the animal, all parts are eaten and taken care of, and are made useful. I like that sentiment.

The workshop was led by Piero Sardo who's the president of Slow Food, and he did a great job of guiding us all through the tasting of three different suovas, some lovey pickled chanterelles, a special Laplandish bread (similar to Polar-bread which is sold all over Sweden and in some other countries as well) and we also tried a beautiful wine, Ciliegiolo Sasso Tondo from Emilia-Romagna.

Top row:
Karsten Thurfjell (wine journalist) and Piero Sardo
A Kåta, a traditional lappish tent where the suovas is being smoked

Middle row:
pickled chanterelles
more suovas (you can see the three different kinds here - the middle one is dried after smoking, and the third one is smoked for a longer time)
an ostrich egg and ice cream made from ostrich eggs. (Very creamy!)

Bottom row:
Coffee-cheese - a special kind of cheese made to put in your coffee. I know, it sounds gross. It was the first time I tried it and to my great surprise, it wasn't bad at all. It's sort of like a non-salty halloumi, it has the same squak.
Pastry chef Jan Hedh forming a swan out of sugar. I talked to him at a cookbook release party a few days afterwards, and he said that someone had come up to him after the swan-making, and asked him for the recipe. He had replied "two pounds of sugar". Heh.
Dalecarlian horses - but the blow-up kind. And the sign says "don't feed the horses". Cute.


Pille said...

Sounds like a great event!
Re: coffee cheese - the famous Finnish squeaky 'bread cheese' or leipäjuusto is eaten this way a lot, especially by the Lapps. They cut the cheese into cubes, pour black coffee over. Then you drink the first coffee, and pour over another batch of coffee. Now, by this time the cheese has softened enough, and you'll just spoon it into your mouth together with coffee. Delicious - you should try it! (You can easily buy leipäjuusto in Tallinn next week:)

Coffee & Vanilla said...

Coffee cheese!? A little bit strange but they use coffee and marcapone cheese in Tiramisu... if it taste similar then it must be delicious.

Greetings, Margot

Dubbelörnen said...

WOnderful reading! Souvas is a favourite in our family. And coffee cheese brings me back to my childhood. Up in Tornedalen we had this cheese very often. And as a child I used to eat my parents cheese. My fathers cup tasted always so much better because he used sugar in his coffee...;)

Rachael said...

Wow, now that is an event I would have loved to attend!

african vanielje said...

You sure do have fun Anne. I guess suarvo is something like South African biltong which is smoked dried meat and can be anything from beef, to ostrich to kudu ( a type of deer).