Easy pick ups

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Something sweet

Another thing to do to get rid of the end of summer-angst, besides overdosing strawberries, is to skip town and slow down. I went to my in-laws’ summer house for a few days and got busy doing the usual nothing: reading, dog walking and baking. I don’t know what it is, but something about country life inspires my baking gene.

“You make an awful lot of cakes and such while you’re here” my boyfriend noticed from the couch as I made my second pie in two days. We’d had his family over for dinner the night before and in an effort to secure their continuous love and approval I had made rhubarb and strawberry pie with vanilla sauce (which hopefully you’ll see on video soonish) and since the result was pretty darn good, and completely gone, I was thirsty for more.

This particular morning, I woke up full of energy and bursting with creativity so after a long breakfast on the porch I made my way to the blueberry bushes in the yard. That must be the essence of country living, walking out of your front door while still in your pajamas, coffee cup in hand, and getting your ingredients right then and there. The ground was blue with berries and my sudden burst of activity guilted my guy into helping out, so after only twenty minutes or so we had enough for another pie. I was enthused. Over blueberries and baking and natural grounds.

“I love this! This is the life!” I exclaimed as I peered down my bucket. “We need to move here, we could do this every day!” My mind wandered off. “Imagine if we lived here always, and had no jobs, but still money though, somehow, imagine all the berry picking we could do and all the pies I could make! Imagine!
He did so and we both knew this was the way to go. Immediately, we took action. He searched his pockets for the three lottery tickets we’d gotten the day before and we sat down again on the porch, holding our breaths. (It sure worked for Charlie, he got the whole chocolate factory kingdom and everything.) Unfortunately, luck was not on our side and the whole living in the country and not work but only do recreational baking-dream will have to be postponed for the time being. I’m still optimistic about it, though, somewhere out there there’s a golden ticket to everlasting fortune and vacational freedom. You just have to believe it. (Again, my source of reference is Charlie and Willy Wonka.)

Anyways, in the meantime, here’s the only recipe you’ll ever need to make the easiest, finest pie imaginable: Take some kind of fruit or berries (chop them up if you use chunky things like apples or rhubarbs) and put them in a greased pie dish. Melt 150 g of butter with 2 dl sugar, 1/2 dl cream and 1/2 dl golden syrup (for you Americans, not the kind you’d use with pancakes but the thicker one for baking). Remove from the heat and stir in 3 dl of oats, 1 1/2 dl flour, 1/2 tsp baking powder and 1 tsp flake salt. Pour this delicious mixture on top of your fruit and bake in the oven on 200 degrees Celsius for about 30 minutes. The crust is supposed to be golden brown and a little hard. Serve with dairy like vanilla sauce or ice cream and you’ll get something from almost every food group.

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Malin Ågren is a copywriter living in Sweden. Food is her number one hobby.

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