Tag Archives: lunch

Is your brain stew gluten free?

For an upcoming trip to Budapest, I started looking at restaurants to visit. Generally, I’ll try a lot of things, but I think I’ll skip this place.

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I finally got to visit a Stockholm institution last week – Günters hot dog stand. I’ve heard rumors over the years about the amazing hot dogs and the owner who is very strict with how you order.  Though I was frightened of making a mistake (very similar to the Seinfeld ‘Soup Nazi’ episode), everything went fine and I have to admit, it was an amazing hot dog.

There’s always a long line, so you can’t be in a hurry, but it’s worth it! Remember, it’s only one guy running the stand and he makes them fresh. He’s not all that into chit-chat or customer service, but he will make you an amazing hot dog with toasted baguette bun (you don’t get a choice on that). Know what you want to order when you get up there and then step aside!

I looked up reviews from a few other people about the place. Here are a few excerpts:

I cry a little every time I eat any hotdog that isn’t from Günters

If left stranded on a desert island and I had to choose between 100 big macs or just one Gunters krauker wurst + sauerkraut korv I would pick the sausage.

It felt just like your were standing in line at the Soup-nazi-stand in Seinfeld:-)
Me and my wife stood in line and the guy in the stand just screamed – NEXT!
He handled like four five orders at the time and didn’t care if there were two or twenty people in line. He just had his own pace.


It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

I planned to bring both of my sons to the beach yesterday. I packed two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, because they’re cheap to make and I already had everything. Plus, they like them, which always helps.

Just before leaving, my oldest son got an invitation to go somewhere else, so my youngest invited a friend to join us instead. “No problem,” I said. “I’ve already got two towels, two sandwiches and two water bottles.”
And then on the way there, it occurred to me… most Swedish children have never had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
I have this same problem with two other standard American kids’ foods. The first is macaroni and cheese. I can’t think of a kid in America who doesn’t love macaroni and cheese, but guess what? Swedish kids seem to hate it! I have no idea why, other than it’s unfamiliar. Or maybe their environmental, super-healthy senses can tell on some level that a typical box is probably full of chemicals and additives. Still though, it’s pasta and it’s cheese. What’s not to like?
The other problem we often have is frosting on birthday cake. Again, these Swedish kids who aren’t exposed to grotesque amounts of sugar just don’t seem to enjoy it. We have to have whipped cream or fruit to get them to eat it.
So you can see my concern that the peanut butter and jelly sandwich might be rejected by my son’s Swedish friend. That would mean I would actually have to stop and pay for another meal, which I was really trying to avoid.
Luckily, I remembered one of the most annoying songs ever that every kid seems to love, no matter what country they’re from. PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME!
If you’re unfamiliar with the lyrics, here are a few sections of the song. Please remember it is meant to be shouted over the music, and not sung:
It’s peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Now, I may not have had a baseball bat, but the song did the trick. The sandwich was accepted and eaten by the friend. Money saved! Though I did have to pay in another way by having that horrible song stuck in my head all day.

Apple pie burger

We were told to visit a popular burger place in East Texas that serves an Apple Pie Burger. I pictured a burger with an actual apple pie between the buns (honestly, it’s not that much of a stretch with some of the other crazy foods around there), but it was a burger with apple pie ingredients added – apple pieces, brown sugar and maple syrup bacon. It actually wasn’t that bad, though I prefer a regular burger.


Hot Dr. Pepper

Never really caught on. 

Hamburgers of Stockholm

I’m actually on vacation for a few weeks, so this is a scheduled post, as are any appearing the next few weeks. To keep up the blog and entertain while I’m offline, I present “Hamburgers of Stockholm.”

We’ve had a burger revolution here in Stockholm over the past 5 years and I think it’s going quite well. When I first moved here, hamburgers were sad, wilted abominations not worth moving my jaws for. But after the mighty burger uprising, where Stockholmers protested and said, “No more boring hamburgers!” while marching in the streets spraying mustard and ketchup along their path, we finally received the first of what would become many QUALITY, TASTY burgers!

Sure, they all cost the equivalent of $10 or more, but it’s still cheaper than a plane ticket to Texas.



School lunch

My son recently got back from a school trip to Tallinn, Estonia where his class visited another school. A nice parent took pictures (because in 4 days my son only took one), and he included a photo of the school cafeteria lunch.

When I saw it, I said, “Wow! That’s like a real lunch with real food on real plates!”

My husband thought I was a weirdo for saying that. He said, “They didn’t serve you on plates at your school?”

I said, “No, it was always rectangle plastic trays and usually rectangle food.”

Estonia, I am impressed!

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A Texas baked potato

A typical baked potato in Texas – with pulled pork of course:


Why children shouldn’t be allowed at the buffet

Took the kids to a buffet the other day. They proceeded to make a hamburger filled with fries, chicken nuggets and hot dog weiners. Oh! Don’t forget the barbecue sauce!  They also like to dip carrots in ketchup.

Lots of people say they gain weight after kids. That’s funny. I seem to lose my appetite.


Excuse me, you forgot our 4th onion ring order

We’re 4 people at this table. How do we survive on this tiny amount of food?  #GiantStomachsAfter2WeeksInTX


Living in America

I got nothing today. I give you James Brown’s Gumbo House:


This is why we can’t stay more than a month

One month in Texas = 10 lbs (that’s 5 kilos for the rest of the world!)

I give you evidence:

Fish sticks

My 7 year old was very disappointed with his school lunch:

“Ugh! They had fish sticks at school today, and you know what was in them?! DEAD FISH!”


How to improve anything

I’ve spent the morning looking up food trucks in our area, the Taco Truck being the one I’m the most interested in.
Then a while ago I found a company that uses the name Taco though it’s a design company and has nothing to do with Tacos.

That’s when I realized that you can improve anything by just adding the word taco.

table – TACO TABLE
museum – TACO MUSEUM
bowling – TACO BOWLING
school – TACO SCHOOL
flu – TACO FLU

See how many you can come up with.  I’ve gotta go make a taco snowman now.


I’m not on a diet, I’m poor!

People at work looked at my pumpkin seeds and orange last week and asked, “Is that all you’re eating for lunch?”


Now comes the part where they discuss why I’m so thin behind my back, filled with thoughts of how much I must diet and starve myself.

I’m not trying to stay thin, I’m poor!  I can’t afford to spend 10-15 dollars on lunch, which is what it costs in this neighborhood.  But no one wants to hear that, so my response to whether is this is my whole lunch is simply, “yes.”

(by the way, I got that whole pumpkin for less than a dollar, so I’ll be eating pumpkin seeds for the next 2 weeks).


In my day…

We had a parent-teacher conference for our youngest son last week.  Over here, they invite the student to particpate in the parent-teacher conference.  I really don’t get this concept.  When I was young, your parents went for the conference at night, you waited at home and imagined all the horrible things you’d done at school and wait for your punishment when they got home.

These days over in Sweden, or at least at our kids’ school, the teachers ignore the parents and talk to the children.  “How do you like it in school? Oh, you don’t like where you sit?  No problem, we’ll find somewhere you’re more comfortable sitting.”

Really?!!  In my classes, you usually sat in alphabetical order and never moved the rest of the year, even if the kid sitting behind you cut your hair off and stole your books.  You just didn’t move.

Our young son complained because I sometime forget to send him with a fruit for an “extra” snack.  My husband laughed and said, “When I was young, we only got a carrot each day.”  Then I had to chime in with, “You got a snack?  We never got a snack.  I never got to bring a snack to school and neither did anyone else.”

I think my son actually felt sorry for me at that point.

We also had to bring our lunch to school or pay for some week-old sloppy joe in the lunch line.  I spent 4 years eating a brownie every day for lunch.  Here in Sweden, all children get a free school lunch – normally a buffet, complete with salad and about 3 options.  Today they’re having chicken curry with jasmine rice.  This includes a full salad bar.  All for free!

Here’s what a school menu for the week looked like at my school:

Monday – spaghetti
Tuesday – sloppy joe
Wednesday – square, stale ground beef pizza
Thursday – leftover pizza
Friday – scary lasagne and jello – cause it’s Friday

There were no vegetarian dishes, no gluten free.  We were in Texas.  Every meal was ground beef, plus you had to pay 2 dollars for the privledge of eating it.

These kids don’t realize how good they have it.


Pie for breakfast

Breakfast this morning was pumpkin muffins, pie and …. a carrot – because you need something healthy.  Do my kids even realize how lucky they are to have an American mom that considers leftover pie and cake to be breakfast foods?  They’d rather have grapefruit and oatmeal.  Kids don’t know what they’re missing.

Today will be day 3 of Thanksgiving leftovers.  (We celebrated on Saturday.)  I feel that I may soon turn into a combination of sweet potatoes and green bean casserole.  I’ve forgotten if other food exists.  Maybe I’ll venture out to the grocery store today and see if people eat other things.  I have no memory of food before.  I know there are such things as pie, but that’s as far as I stretch.  I’ve been hearing of something called salad.  It rings a bell.  I wonder if my body can take it.  I shall experiment tonight – after my green bean and sweet potato lunch.


Just an observation

A lady today had a piece of Wasa bread.  I thought it was an iPhone.  Time to get new glasses.

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