Food in Swedish Detective Stories. Martin Beck

There is a very detailed description of Swedish food in “Murder at the Savoy” The Martin Beck Series, by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö.

Martin who has recently seperated from his wife and has moved into a new appartment, decides to invite some friends to dinner.

The table was laid with “Matjes Herring on a bed of dill, sour cream and chives. Carp roe with diced onion, dill and lemon slices. Thin slices of Smoked Salmon on delicate lettuce leaves. Sliced hard boiled eggs. Smoked herring. Smoked flounder. Hungarian salami, Polish sausage. A large bowl of lettuce with lots of fresh shrimps. Six different cheeses on a cutting board. Radishes and Olives. Pumpernickel and Hungarian country bread. Crusty French bread. Country butter in a tub. Fresh potatoes simmering on the stove.In the refrigerator were 4 bottles of Piesporter Falkenberg,(a riesling wine), cans of Carlsberg Hof and a bottle of Lotjens Schnapps in the freezer.”

Quite a feast, perhaps looking something like this.

martin beckmartin beckThis is a Photograph of the finest Smôrgasbord in Stockholm, (during the 1960’s) served at the Restaurant Operakâllern. The table measured 7,50 metres long offered 60 dishes, from Herrings to hot dishes The large ceramic barrel in the centre served Aquavit. Also called Schnapps.

martin beckToday many Swedish restaurants have found new ways of expression. Foraging and experimenting with local products.Look at this to see one of the top Swedish restaurants.  Swedish Restaurants rate in the top 50 in the world.

martin beckThe Stockholm Subway in the 60’s at the time of Martin Beck. On the  wall is an advertisement for chewing gum.

martin beckCouples dancing in an outdoor ballroom in Gothenburg. The young women keep their coats on because the evenings were cool.(In the sense of weather being cool!)

4 thoughts on “Food in Swedish Detective Stories. Martin Beck

  1. Herr Beck certainly knows how to lay on a spread, and very cleverly too after separating from his wife. Most of the dishes have been prepared elsewhere presumably (unless he pickles his own herrings when off-duty)…..with only some potatoes simmering away. And not a red herring in sight. Skal!

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