I’ve used bold print & images for those who only have a few minutes to skim:)

We recently loved our 5 days in Stockholm at the end of August – the weather was generally very pleasant…not too hot nor too cold and mostly blue skies (see feature photo).

Getting there: Australia (our home, Canberra) – Stockholm

We arrived in Stockholm after a 10ish hour flight from Singapore – Moscow, Russia 🇷🇺 …after a v short wait (maybe 20 min) in Moscow transit lounge, we then had a 1-2 hr flight to Stockholm. We decided not to stopover in Moscow as we had been there a few years ago (a rail trip…post for another day).

Tony looking exhausted at Hotel Rival after a long flight

The Hotel Rival where we stayed has been a theatre for many years as well (photo below). We considered going to this theatre one evening but everything was in Swedish that week.

Looking toward the renovated Art Deco theatre at Hotel Rival

The photo below (by Tony) was at the beautiful park outside our hotel.

I’ve seen this statue before to represent Sweden’s historic power in region…this 1 in park across from Hotel Rival

A great food/art lovers’ location:

Near this hotel and park in Södermalm (Mariatorget rail station) were a range of great cafes and restaurants (most at OK prices except coffee…v expensive in Stockholm!). Here are a few plates and dishes we enjoyed at various times:

`Dinner at Bistro Sud – short walk from our hotel…I had a vegetarian dish with shaved fennel (which had been slightly pickled) + other veg + burrata cheese topped with a pistachio pesto.
Outdoor space at Bistro Sud (except for smoke!)…I liked apartment block view

We had the above dishes for dinner at Bistro Sud. It was a nice warm evening so we sat outside. We loved it all except…

Unlike at home, people smoke in the outdoors at restaurants (not 10 m or so away from restaurant as the law states in Australia); there was a couple right next to us chain smoking so it was unpleasant at times. Tony being an ex-smoker (he gave up when Andrew was born in 83) finds it even more bothersome than I do…some say ex-smokers are the biggest whingers – they might be right😉

Architecture/Arts etc of area:

The other thing I found interesting in photo above were the apartment blocks (trust Chris! Tony would say!) – many had a bay style window like this block and were painted in various colours. All very attractive I thought…many Art Deco style buildings in this area.

Sodermalm was mostly a working class area but like many of those inner city districts around the world, it has been gentrified and is now very popular with a range of people, including those with an interest in arts etc…there are many galleries and cafes exhibiting artworks. Good thing is that it’s well away from the touristy/expensive restaurants although in saying that, if planning to go, be prepared for fairly high prices – even more in parts, than say Sydney, London and Paris.

However, we had such a big breakfast (and delicious…photo below at Hotel Rival) that we only ever had a very light lunch (similar to open sandwich in 2nd photo).

Breakfasts at Hotel Rival were beautiful
We often had small serve of open sandwich for lunch

Other traditional dishes we enjoyed were:

Swedish meatballs at Soders Hjaet (an average priced restaurant popular with locals & tourists)…menus in both Swedish and English; friendly staff; pleasant ambiance etc.

Swedish meatballs of course…I loved the pickled cucumber

Seafood stew at one of many Scottish Pubs in the area…we tried 2 of these pubs – both good and combined Scandinavian/Scottish foods/flavours…very interesting! Scotland is quite close

and we only just arrived in Scotland (Aberdeen) after a short flight from Bergen (Norway)…a post for another day! At the moment we’re driving around the Highlands and it feels like only yesterday we were in Scandinavia!

Seafood stews on menus a lot in Scandinavia- this 1 at a Scottish pub!

Back to Stockholm…

Other than eating!...we also did lots of walking to all the famous Stockholm sites eg. The medieval Old Town (Glama Stan); walks along the waterways (feature photo…Stockholm is often called “The Venice of the North”) etc.

We also visited quite a few galleries and museums – our favourite was the newish Photography Museum (a post for another day). A similar museum will be opening in both New York and London soon.

The Photography Museum had a fabulous cafe/restaurant as well where we had a light lunch (photos below):

After the usual big breakfast at hotel we shared this for lunch at Photography Museum

There’s an outdoor bar/cafe at Photography Museum – “Fotografiska”

As usual to conclude this post…

A SIMPLE RECIPE below from “The Little Swedish Kitchen” (2018) by Rachel Khoo...I bought it on Kindle just before we left on this trip to Scandinavia. I’ll also list some appealing Spring/Summer recipes from this book as by the time we return home the weather will be warming up! We would have this as a starter (a v small serve) or a main course…

LEMONY CARAWAY CABBAGE SALAD WITH GRILLED PRAWNS:

The cabbage salad below is a great way to begin a meal, this time doused in a citrusy vinegar dressing and paired with grilled prawns in their shells, keeping all those lovely juices locked in.

The Swedish have “pointy or hispi cabbage” but Rachel also says “or white cabbage”

Serves 4 as a starter, 2 as a light lunch

Preparation time: 10 minutes / Salting time: 1 hour / Cooking time: 4–6 minutes

Ingredients:

1 small head of white cabbage (about 450g) sea salt and black pepper; 3 tbsp white wine vinegar; 1 tsp sugar; 3 tbsp olive oil; 1 tbsp caraway seeds; 300 g prawns; 1 lemon 🍋

Method:…experienced cooks will probably know the method but when I return home to Australia, I’ll type the method up…if you want to prepare it sooner, look up Net eg. “Pickled cabbage salad” or I know there’s a similar recipe on Net with an Apple Cider Vinegar salad which we also love.

Other recipes from “Spring” section of this book that we would like to try:

Root vegetable crisps with Caviar and Red Onion;

Beetroot Patties…Beet a la Lindstrom sp?;

Swedish Schnitzel Sandwich 🥪…Tony had excellent Schnitzel in Stockholm at one of restaurants above…when I had meatballs; however, his meal wasn’t as photographic as my meatballs😉…but equally tasty he said!

I’ll add other fave recipes later from Rachel’s book:)