Scandinavian cuisine in London
ScandiKitchen is all about food from all over Scandinavia. Run by Danish entrepreneur, restaurateur and cook Bronte Aurell and her Swedish husband, Jonas, ScandiKitchen is an online and bricks and mortar shop, with a Cafe in Central London and a debut cookbook due out in October. They also run a nationwide online shop.
I caught up with Bronte to find out a little bit more about her business, and her plans.
Hi Bronte, so tell me, who buys Scandinavian produce in London?
When we first started out eight years ago, we thought the groceries might only appeal to ex pats, but we were wrong: We have as many local customers as we have Scandinavians. It seems people are keen to use authentic Scandinavian ingredients in their cooking – and have things such as Leksands Crispbread and Felix jams in their store cupboards. Scandinavian produce and products are of a high quality.
What are some of your best selling items?
Overall, I’d say crispbread is up there at the top. We don’t eat crispbread as a ‘diet food’ – to us, it is just an essential item on our breakfast and lunch table. It’s both good for you and tasty.
We also eat a lot of fish – from our beloved pickled herring to smoked and cured fish. Ohhh, and we have some really delicious cheeses, such as Västerbotten – an aged Swedish cheese that is utterly delicious.
I see you’ve written a cookbook – what was the inspiration behind that?
Our wonderful customers have asked us to share recipes since the day we opened. We’re all about authenticity and the real deal. So, we finally got around to putting pen to paper.
Our book is full of really simple everyday recipes from the café and our homes. The way we really eat. We’ve always stayed true to what we are: A café that serves lunch food the way we eat it in Scandinavia. We’re not a fancy bunch of people – we eat wholesome, simple food. We also love baking. The book is all about that: Good Food, With Love, From Scandinavia.
Okay, so I’m having friends over this weekend, one of who is particular to fish, and one who doesn’t like seafood! Tell me what I should make from your book?
Make a selection of beautiful open sandwiches – that way, everybody is happy. I’d make some salmon open sandwiches, the new potato with aioli, smoked mackerel with fennel and maybe the roast beef and remoulade. Everybody wins.
Finally, besides your own place, what are your favourite places to eat and drink in London town?
I love The Providores in Marylebone – my old favourite for years and years. I don’t think I’ll ever tire of that place. When I work from home, I often have lunch at Graceland Cafe in Kensal Green – a great local spot near where I live and really family friendly, too.
Thank you for your time, and I’ll look out for that book!
In October Bronte will launch her debut cookbook - The Scandi Kitchen - published by Ryland Peters & Small, priced £16.99
ScandiKitchen, 61 Great Titchfield St, London W1W 7PP 020 7580 7161