I had my very first taste of authentic Swedish cuisine one fateful day during my childhood. It was Swedish Fish candy.
I guess that doesn’t count…but I do remember wondering if Swedish Fish really does hail from Sweden. I checked yesterday just to make sure and turns out it does—who knew, am I right? But I’m talking about true Swedish fare in this post, not sweet fruity-flavored candy in the shape of fish with dead eyes. (Also, I can never really figure out the true flavor; is it cherry or fruit punch? My artificial flavor palette has failed me.)
And neither am I talking about those IKEA meatballs. I once had a bad experience with them and I’m never going back. The Swedes have great taste in furniture but they can keep their meatballs and lingonberry jelly.
Today’s feature is Broder Restaurant, a testament to delectable Swedish breakfast! The place exuded coziness with its dark wooden tables and warm lamplight, and there were also blocks of wood artistically arranged with ends jutting out everywhere to lend to the cabin feel. (I went to the one on N Interstate Ave.)
I had dragged along my high school best friend with me, knowing that she would go crazy over Scandinavian food (typical Finnish behavior), and she chattered all about this classic Finnish oven porridge on the menu. Apparently it’s very popular in the motherland, so it seems like Broder does aim to serve pretty authentic vittles.
But I decided to go with the lemon raspberry fritters—I blame my sweet tooth. And my friend ordered this impressive charcuterie board, Swedish breakfast style. My dish consisted of a small heap of golden fritters, dotted with fresh raspberries and bursting with zesty lemon flavor. Add just a dip into the maple syrup, and the flavors just about melted my insides. The fritters actually resembled pancakes more than the American deep fried dough, but they still had this crispy edge that I loved. Apple pork sausage and baked eggs accompanied the fritters, and overall it was a very hearty meal.
The presentation of my friend’s breakfast board was really spectacular, though. A little granola and yogurt parfait sat on the end with delicate apple slices decorating the top, followed by triangular chunks of hard cheese, meat slices, rye and brown bread crackers, smoked trout, a bowl of pickled vegetables, and grapefruit. She enjoyed it a lot, and I vowed right then and there that the next time I came I would try one of those famous boards.
I’m so ready.