Tag Archives: Swedish

Happy Valentine’s Day

I hope everyone is able to enjoy Valentine’s Day even if plans got a little messed up with the weather.  I feel sorry for florists and chocolate shops because they may have lost a lot of business.  Luckily, my flower delivery went through and so did my chocolates!  I’m a happy girl!  I got double chocolates for Valentine’s Day.  First, I got a box from Anna Shea Chocolates in Illinois.  I always wanted a box of artistically decorated chocolates.  These are so lovely with bright colors and glitter.  Some of my favorites from this collection included the candied bacon caramel (smooth with nice smoke–who knew I’d like bacon and chocolate?), aged balsamic caramel, cinnamon swirl (just like a cinnamon roll), cherry baby, raspberry blush (I love the taste of raspberry puree and chocolate), and vadelma.

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I also got chocolates from FIKA, the Swedish coffee shop in NYC I mentioned in my Dina’s Guide to NYC Chocolate Shops.  These truffles were melt-in-your-mouth good.  Many were exceptional like the incredibly good goat cheese, macadamia nut, water sea salt caramel and hazelnut gianduja.

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Sweets Week: Day 3: FIKA

FIKA is a Swedish coffee shop that makes its own pastries in house.  While I don’t drink coffee, I do eat pastries.  And the pastries here are delicious.  They are Swedish-inspired like almond marzipan pastry and Swedish cinnamon buns.  I got the almond marzipan pastry, the graham cracker chocolate with hazelnut cream filling and a chocolate spice biscotti.   They also have chocolate truffles in flavors like lingonberry.  In addition to the selection of Swedish pastries, they also have chocolate chip cookies, brownies and croissants, and they serve food.  While you can sit in FIKA, it is small and has the feel of a takeout coffee shop rather than a place to sit and linger.  All of these treats were delicious, but my favorite was the firm yet chewy biscotti.

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7 NYC Candy Stores

When I was a kid, I remember trick-or-treating in my neighborhood and getting large-sized chocolate bars of many of the popular candies.  There was a woman who always gave out popcorn balls and a doctor who gave out apples.  They were not my favorites, but looking back on it, those were more of the memorable Halloween treats.  As I got older, I noticed the candy became smaller, as people opted for smaller-sized treats to give out, probably due to the cost of candy.

I don’t think of specialty candy when I think of Halloween candy, but if you are in the city for Halloween and want to pick up some candy or find yourself a sweet treat to celebrate, here are some candy stores to visit.  Admittedly, I am not a big candy eater, so I don’t frequent candy stores all that often.  My favorite candy store in the city is Sockerbit because I have a like for all things Scandinavian, and I like the tart gummy candies.

Meatpacking District

Sugar Factory–At Sugar Factory, you can get a variety of candy cocktails with flavors of popular candies like Jolly Rancher, Blow Pop, Lemon Heads and Hubba Bubba bubble gum with a real piece of Hubba Bubba.  There are also 60-oz. drinks in ginormous goblets.  Sugar Factory is a restaurant, but it also has a retail candy store.

46 Gansevoort Street (between Washington Street & Greenwich Street), (212) 414-8700, www.sugarfactory.com/new-york-citys-meatpacking-district-0

Midtown East

FAO Schweetz–A candy store inside the famous toy store.  It has all types of candy, including giant gummy bears.

767 5th Avenue, (212) 644-9400, www.fao.com

FAO Schweetz
FAO Schweetz

Little Italy

Papabubble–If you like hard candy, Papabubble is the place for you.  The shop is a modest size and specializes in artisan hard candy in a variety of shapes and flavors.

380 Broome Street (between Mott Street & Mulberry Street), (212) 966-2599, www.papabubbleny.com

Lower East Side

Economy Candy–An old-fashioned candy store with all kinds of candy, including nuts and jelly beans.  They also have novelty gift items like Pez and specialty candies like halvah and Turkish delight.

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108 Rivington Street (between Ludlow Street & Essex Street), (212) 254-1531, www.economycandy.com

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West Village

Sockerbit–A Swedish candy store with all kinds of colorful licorice and gummy candies in sweet, sour and tart varieties.  My favorite of all the candy stores listed.  They also have a limited selection of Scandinavian knickknacks and gourmet food products.

89 Christopher Street (between 7th Avenue South & Bleecker Street), (212) 206-8170, www.sockerbit.com

Swedish sweets

Swedish sweets

The London Candy Co.–For the expat Brit or Britophile, the London Candy Co. has all  your favorite candy from the UK.

267 Bleecker Street (between Cornelia Street & Morton Street), (212) 427-2129, www.thelondoncandycompany.com

Sugar and Plumm–The main location of this candy store is on the Upper West Side, but this outpost is a candy store and bakery.  The UWS location is a bistro with a full menu along with a retail candy store.  The desserts here will satisfy any sweet tooth!

257 Bleecker Street, (212) 388-5757, www.sugarandplumm.com/

15 Christmas Cookie Recipes from Around the World

I love reading about Christmas traditions and foods from around the world. I searched blogs for Christmas cookie recipes from bloggers who are from the country where the cookie originates or of that ethnicity or that seemed authentic. So below is a list of 15 Christmas cookies from around the world:

African-style Christmas Sweet Mince Pies

Czech Vanilla Rolls/Vanilkove Rohlicky and Jam Flowers/Linecke Cukrovi

Estonian Gingerbread Cookies/Piparkoogid

Finnish Spicy Gingersnaps/Joulupiparkakut

German Cinnamon Star Cookies/Zimtsterne

Greek Spiced Walnut Cake Soaked in Syrup/Karydópita

Icelandic Air Cookies/Loftkökur

Italian Honey Balls/Struffoli

Italian Knot Cookies/Anginetti

Latvian Gingerbread Cookies/Piparkukas

North Carolina Moravian Spice Cookies

Norwegian Sand Tarts/Sandbakkel

Russian Rozdestvenskioe Pechenie

Scottish Shortbread

Swedish Spritz Cookies

Swedish and Norwegian Christmas Fairs

This weekend, the Swedish Seamen’s Church and the Norwegian Seamen’s Church in Manhattan are holding their annual Christmas fairs.  I hit the Norwegian fair first.  This one’s a little off the beaten path on E. 52nd Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues.

Have some glogg, available in the foyer, as you watch the train.

train

In the main room, there are knitted goods, Christmas decorations, Scandinavian food, baked goods, raffles and a cafe with open-faced sandwiches.

raffle at Norwegian Seamen’s Christmas fair

There were many cookies to choose from, including pepparkakor and krumkake.

baked goods

I bought almond tea cakes that are quite yummy.

almond tea cakes

The Swedish Seamen’s Church is in the heart of the city, on E. 48th Street near Fifth Avenue.  The space was a little smaller here, so it seemed more crowded.  They also had Christmas decorations and baked goods.  If you’re looking for more Scandinavian food items, the Norwegian church is the better bet.  Here, there were baked goods, including cardamom buns, limpa bread, finskar pinnar and more.  I got cinnamon buns.

cinnamon buns

If you want to catch one of the fairs, or both, they go through Sunday evening.

Sweets Week: Day 3: Sockerbit

There’s more to Swedish candy than Swedish fish (though I’m a big fan of these).  At Sockerbit‘s West Village location, I got a bag of Swedish sweets:  Swedish berries both tart and sweet and some coated with sugar, vanilla and strawberry marshmallows (some in mushroom shapes), pony-shaped gummies, strawberry lollipops that promise never-ending flavor and yogurt-covered coconut.  Licorice is popular here, but I’m not a fan so I stuck to what I like best.  (For fans, the licorice comes in sweet and salty varieties.)

Verdict:  Love the slight tartness of the flat Swedish berries, my favorite of the sampling.  The yogurt-covered coconut was another fave.  All were fresh and chewy.

Swedish sweets