Posts in RECIPES
Camp Food; Mason Jar Salads
Camp food; Mason Jar Salads.  Photography by  TopWithCinnamon  via upknörth

Camp food; Mason Jar Salads. Photography by TopWithCinnamon via upknörth

Minimal style camping and healthy eating can start to get space consuming. Don't get us wrong, there is nothing dull about grilled meats on an open fire, but it's hard to resist a good hearty salad on the side. Forget plastic bags or separate containers. Make your salads directly in mason jars a day or two ahead, chill and pack with you ready-to-eat. 

Quinoa and roasted sweet potato are delicious at room temperature and keep well if you prepare them ahead of time; so they make a great base for this type of salad. Add some greens of your choice, something to pack a crunch for texture (pomegranate or dried nuts and fruits), add in extra vegetables or beans (carrot, cucumbers, cabbage, chickpeas) and a kick-ass dressing (something sweet, sour and fresh). Pack it loosely so you can eat it straight from the jar and you’re good to go.

Camp food; Mason Jar Salads.  Photography by   TopWithCinnamon   via upkn  örth

Camp food; Mason Jar Salads. Photography by TopWithCinnamon via upknörth

For the salad:

3 tbsp dressing of your choice 

1 sweet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and roasted 

1/3 cup dry quinoa

1 small carrot, grated, julienned or spiralised

handful of pomegranate seeds (optional)

large handful of baby spinach leaves


Assemble the salad in a jar:

1st layer - 3 tbsp dressing

2nd layer - Carrot, cucumber, cabbage etc.

3rd layer - Quinoa 

4th layer- Roasted sweet potato

5th layer - Pomegranate or dried fruits and nuts

6th layer - As much leafy greens as you can pack in.

Screw on the lid and chill until needed. Shake when ready to serve, or alternatively drizzle dressing on top before serving.  

Recipe inspiration and photography from TopWithCinnamon 

Dill And Salt-Cured Salmon

Salmon season is starting soon here in the PNW. This recipe combines our northwest time of year with a traditional Nordic dish. Salt-cured salmon is referred to as 'Gravlax' in the Northern regions. It's not uncommon to see it on many tables served as an appetizer, thinly sliced and accompanied by some sort of bread (Finnish Rieska recipe here) or boiled potatoes.

The word itself, 'gravlax', comes from the Scandinavian word grava ('to dig'; in the modern sense 'to cure (fish)'). During the middle ages, gravlax was made by fishermen, who salted the salmon and lightly fermented it by burying it in the sand above the high-tide line. This is the modern, at home rendition.

1 ½ cup (450g) rock salt+ 

2 tablespoons caster (superfine) sugar 

1 ½ tablespoon water 

1 tablespoon white peppercorns 

1.5kg side salmon, trimmed and pin-boned++ 

1 bunch dill, chopped 

Brandy Dressing

⅓ cup (80ml) brandy 

1 teaspoon caster (superfine) sugar 

sea salt and cracked black pepper 

1 teaspoon store-bought grated horseradish 

2 teaspoons white wine vinegar 

Process the salt, sugar, water and peppercorns in short bursts in a food processor until just combined. Place the salmon on a tray, rub with the dill, then the salt mixture. Cover with plastic wrap, place a tray on top of the salmon, weigh down with a heavy object and refrigerate for 24 hours.

To make the brandy dressing, place the brandy, sugar, salt and pepper in a saucepan over high heat. Bring to the boil and cook for 2 minutes or until reduced by half. Stir through the horseradish and vinegar and cool slightly. Thinly slice the salmon, spoon over the dressing and serve with chunks of dark rye bread. Serves 12. 

+ The type of salt used for curing is important. You should use rock salt rather than a finer salt because its coarseness cures the meat without imparting too much saltiness. 
++ Ask your fishmonger to pin-bone the fish for you. Alternatively, run your fingers along the fish and remove any protruding bones with a set of tweezers. 
+++ The salmon will keep, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Recipe via Donna Hay

Icelandic Birch Cocktail

Nordic flavours meet woodsy tones just in time for Valentine's Day. Featured recipe by Modern Wifestyle 


Birkir and Björk from Foss Distillery are two Delicious Icelandic Liquors made with Pure Birch Sap (juice) and make excellent ingredients for cocktails.

If you are in the mood for little taste of the woods, earthy tones with hint a hint of citrus, this Icelandic Birch Cocktail with Blood Orange is definitely something for you!

Birkir is a snaps (36%) and Björk is a liqueur (27,5%) – both super smooth with earthy tones and hint of honey. I have used them in various recipes, both drinks and food, and I am very excited to share a Björk Ice Cream recipe with you all very soon. You can get Björk and Birkir in Iceland (obviously), Denmark and the USA. Check out the list of retailers.

First time I ever tasted Birkir/Björk it was very simple and straight up with Tonic Water and a slice of lime. After my first sip I said loudly “Mmmmmm Delicious! it’s like licking wood!” I might be a good cook but spoken words are not always my forte.


Makes one


  • 1 part Birkir Snaps
  • 1 part Blood Orange Juice
  • 1/2 part Dark Simple Syrup
  • Few Drops Angostura Bitter
  • A Dash of Sparkling Water


  1. Fill a Cocktail Shaker with Ice Cubes and add Birkir, blood orange juice and syrup. Shake well
  2. Strain into a glass, fill up with sparkling water and add few drops of Angostura Bitter


  • 1 dl Brown Sugar
  • 1,5 dl Water
  1. Place sugar and water into a saucepan and let sugar dissolve over low heat
  2. Pour into a jar and store in the fridge for up to 1 week

Photography and recipe by Modern Wifestyle

Rieska: Traditional Finnish Flat Bread
Photo by Maria Laitinen

Photo by Maria Laitinen

Think of a cross between your favourite butter biscuit and a (very) hearty bread. Rieska is an age-old Finnish recipe that is traditionally made with oats, barely or potato. The ingredients make this meal accompaniment naturally rich in flavour and fibres. In Finland, it's not uncommon to see this bread in various shapes and sizes on the table alongside any meal.

300g (1 1/2 cup) mashed organic potato, cooled

100g (3/4 cup) org. whole spelt flour or barley flour

1 large organic egg

pinch of salt

Begin by preheating your oven to 220C/428F. Mix all your ingredients into a bowl and divide the dough into four portions. Place each ball of dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Flatten each portion into a round disk; about 1.5cm/.6 inches thick. Prick the bread with the tip of a fork and bake for 15 minutes, until the bread reaches a pale golden colour. When ready, remove and serve warm. Rieska pairs well with butter, milk, cheeses and traditional Nordic salt-cured salmon (gravlax).

Photo by  Maria Laitinen
DIY Northern Spirits; Make Your Own Scandinavian Aquavit

Aquavits (or aquavites or akvavits) is a high-proof liquor that has been made in Scandinavia since the 15th Century by distilling fermented potato or grain mash and flavoring it with savory, herbaceous ingredients. Caraway seeds—which account for rye bread's flavor—are always included in a traditional aquavit. Cumin, lemon or orange peel, cardamom, dill, clove, aniseed and fennel are also typical. Some aquavits—particularly Norwegian ones—are mellowed with barrel aging, while others are consumed young, raw and crystal clear.

Countless varieties of aquavit are available throughout Scandinavia, but its rarer in North America. Despite the ample supply of commercially available aquavits, it's still common for Swedes to make their own. While true aquavit production involves distillation, you can cop the same effect by infusing a store-bought spirit with any number of savory ingredients.

1. Start with a neutral spirit. A potato vodka—such as Boyd & Blair, Chopin or Teton Glacier— which picks up flavors better than grain vodka due to its higher viscosity.

2. Clean your ingredients thoroughly. Cut all the pith from citrus to avoid bitterness, and toast hard spices to intensify their flavors. Chop or slice fruits and vegetables into manageable pieces; the more surface area, the more flavor gets extracted.

3. Use a clean glass jar as an infusion vessel. A vodka bottle works fine, provided your ingredients fit through the small opening.

4. Different ingredients require different infusion times, ranging from a few days to a few weeks. Taste is the best judge here. Once the infusion is complete, strain finished aquavit through a coffee filter. It will keep indefinitely in the freezer.

Classic Aquavit

Toast ¼ cup coriander seeds and combine with 750 ml potato vodka, leaving to infuse for one week. Add ½ bunch dill fronds (from crown dill if available) and let infuse for three to four more days. Strain and store.

Fig and Cardamom

Toast ¼ cup cardamom pods and combine with 750 ml potato vodka, leaving to infuse for one week. Wash and halve ½ cup dried black mission figs and add to the infusion for four to five days more. Strain and store.


Peel, wash and coarsely chop a horseradish root. Combine ¼ cup chopped horseradish with 750 ml potato vodka. Leave to infuse for one to two weeks. Strain and store.


Ginger Turmeric Honey Bomb

A tasty way to combat a cold come the Christmas season. As David and Luise from Green Kitchen Stories put it, the mix is "eye-tearingly and sinus-clearingly fierce." Ginger has long been known to have several antibiotic effects, as well as helping with infections, inflammation, detoxification, circulation and nausea. Turmeric is considered a herb that cleanses the whole body, especially the liver. It is used to support digestion, treat fever, infections and inflammations. The turmeric is paired with black pepper to enhance the bioavailability of curcumin (the active ingredient in turmeric) by a thousand times. 

Ginger & Turmeric Honey Bomb
Makes 1/2 cup

1/2 cup / 120 ml honey (prefereble organic unheated)

2-4 tbsp freshly grated ginger (or ground ginger), depending on how strong you prefer

2 tsp ground turmeric (or freshly grated turmeric if you can find it)

1 organic unwaxed lemon, freshly grated zest

2 pinches ground black pepper

Stir together all ingredients in a bowl. Taste and add more ginger or turmeric if needed. Aim for a really strong flavour. Store the Ginger & Turmeric Honey Bomb in a glass container. It can be enjoyed in your favourite tea, on it's own or dissolved in hot water. Add one/two teaspoons as desired. 

Recipe and photography by David and Luise from Green Kitchen Stories. Find their blog here.

Fall Things: Apple Cider Rum Old Fashioned

Four Words: Apple Cider Ice Cubes.

Consider your life changed and your season off to the perfect start. Cheers!

~Editor, Kristin Guy of Dine x Design

Apple Cider Rum Old Fashioned

2 ounces gold rum

1 bar spoon brown sugar

3 dashes Miracle Mile Forbidden Bitters

splash Canton Ginger Liqueur

3-4 apple cider ice cubes (see note in recipe below)

In a rocks glass, add brown sugar, bitters and Canton. Muddle together. Add apple cider ice cubes to the glass (note: to make ice cubes, pour apple cider into an ice cube tray, freeze overnight). Pour rum over ice cubes and gently stir to combine. To make a “long” version of this, top with a few ounces of club soda.

Recipe & Photo: Elana Lepkowski via Dine x Design

RECIPESEditor Comment
Fall Things; Pan Fried Caramelized Salmon


Do we need to go on? Because the word caramelized pretty much speaks itself.


½ cup sugar

2½ tablespoons coarse sea salt, pulsed gently in a food processor

a few dashes of freshly crushed black pepper

16 ounces salmon, cut into 4 filets, with skin

olive oil



Combine the sugar, salt, and black pepper in a shallow bowl. Dip each filet into the bowl and coat the entire surface of the salmon with the sugar/salt mixture.

Heat a little bit of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the salmon, skin side down in the pan, and saute for about 5 minutes. If you're worried about the burnt sugar in the pan (or if there's too much oil/liquid) just drain it off or spoon it out of the pan. If there's a lot of oil splattering, turn the heat down. I would not recommend going higher than medium heat.

Flip each salmon filet (carefully! keep the skin on there because it helps the filets hold together) and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Flip to the side and saute each of the sides for another 2-3 minutes, if the filet is thick enough.

Preheat the broiler to 450 degrees. Sprinkle the top of each salmon filet with a teaspoon or two of additional sugar/salt mixture. Transfer the pan from the stovetop into the oven. Let the salmon broil for 5-10 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure it's not burning. The sugar in the pan might look burnt but that's okay as long as the tops of the salmon are looking golden brown. When the salmon is done cooking, remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes (that sugar gets HOT). Gently peel off the skin before eating - it will be very dark because it's totally caramelized with sugar, and it should come off very easily.

Recipe and photography from Lindsay of Pinch Of Yum