Fresh thinking: Trine Hahnemann’s Danish cuisine recipes
While still based in tradition, Danish cuisine has embraced new flavours, foreign ingredients and a lighter touch, says Trine Hahnemann
We Danes have stopped thinking about the meal as revolving around meat and potatoes. More things are eaten raw than my grandmother would have imagined.
While my cooking is quite different from my grandmothers it is still deeply rooted in tradition, but I use stronger flavours, more spices, more fresh herbs, different techniques. I grew up with cauliflower boiled to death or in a gratin with white sauce. Now I serve it in endless ways: raw, fried in butter, as a pure with chilli.
Inspiration from around the world has entered modern Danish cooking, and texture and combinations have shifted. It is lighter, a bit more complex in flavours, but without giving in on seasonality and still recognising the benefits of keeping things simple.
Spelt tart with spinach, Jerusalem artichokes and feta
This tart is ideal for everyday cooking and not that hard to make. Its also perfect for guests, as it can be made the day before, then heated up to serve. Serves 4-6.
For the pastry:
plain flour 100g, plus extra for dusting
wholegrain spelt flour 100g
sea salt 1 tsp
butter, chopped 75g
skyr (quark) or fromage frais 75g
For the filling:
Jerusalem artichokes 200g
olive oil 2 tbsp
garlic cloves, chopped 2
eggs, beaten 5
full-fat crme frache 100ml
feta cheese 200g, crumbled
freshly grated nutmeg 1 tsp
sea salt 1 tsp
freshly ground black pepper 1 tsp
Begin with the pastry. Mix both flours with the salt in a large bowl, then rub in the butter with your fingertips. Mix in the skyr (quark) or fromage frais. Knead the dough lightly with your hands just until the ingredients are combined. (Alternatively, pulse all the ingredients together in a food processor, adding a little water if the dough does not come together.)
Roll the dough out on a floured surface and butter a tart tin or dish, about 28cm in diameter. Use the pastry to line the tart tin, then refrigerate for 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Line the pastry case with baking parchment and pour in baking beans or uncooked rice. Bake in the hot oven for 15 minutes, then remove the baking beans and parchment and bake for a further 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling. Peel the artichokes and cut them into 1.5cm chunks. Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the artichokes and saut for 3-4 minutes, then add the garlic and let it cook for about 5 minutes; take off the heat. If using fresh spinach, rinse in cold water, then place in a separate saucepan over a medium heat and allow it to wilt. When it is just wilted, drain really well in a sieve.
Put the beaten eggs, crme frache, feta, nutmeg and salt and pepper into a large bowl and mix well with a wooden spoon. Fold in the drained spinach and Jerusalem artichokes. Pour the mixture into the pastry case, return it to the oven and bake for 3035 minutes, or until the filling has set but retains a slight wobble. Serve right away with a nice salad.
Cauliflower, prawns and dill
Read more: www.theguardian.com