Cookbook Review: Lagom

Lagom Steffi Knowles Dellner

Lagom: [n.] not too much, not too little; just enough.

This debut cookbook by Swedish food stylist and writer Steffi Knowles-Dellner offers genuine insight into how Swedes eat and cook—with recipes that fit around the seasons, occasions, times of day, and appetite. Eating and cooking in tune with “lagom” means embracing food that is good for body and soul, unfussy, delicious and sustaining, and all in harmony.

The Swedes understand that balance is everything—that you crave comforting food when a bitter wind is howling outside, that refreshing, lighter meals suit hot, hazy days, that a mid-morning bun is good for morale, and that a long, sociable lunch with friends and family on a Sunday is the most rewarding way to end the weekend. There is a time and place for every kind of food, and when everything is in equilibrium, you will be content and satisfied. Featuring unique Swedish concepts like fredagsmys (“cosy Fridays”) and lördagsgodis (“Saturday sweets”), this is an inspiring collection of 100 harmonious recipes.

Lagom: The Swedish Art of Eating Harmoniously, is available at and

Crispy Sliced and Stacked Lemon-Roasted Potatoes

Crispy Sliced and Stacked Lemon-Roasted Potatoes

Serves 4-6

You will need:

1.3–1.5kg [3–] floury [mealy] potatoes, peeled

50 ml [3 ½ Tbsp] olive oil

3 garlic cloves, very finely chopped

1 ½ lemons, zest and juice

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried oregano

2 thyme sprigs, leaves picked

Begin by thinly slicing the potatoes, about ¼ cm [1⁄8in] thick. The easiest way to do this is to use a mandoline or the slicing attachment on a food processor. If you are doing it by hand, make sure you have the radio on and a comfortable seat as it will take a while. Place the slices in a large bowl of cold water as you go.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Drain the potatoes and pat very dry. Next, stack the potato slices lengthways and upright in a large ovenproof dish with high sides, about 35 x 20 cm [14 x 10 in], so the cut sides are facing you. Pack them tightly so that they support each other to form long rows.

Mix the olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and zest with the dried thyme and oregano. Drizzle over the potatoes, then sprinkle with sea salt and the fresh thyme.

Bake for 1 hour–1 hour 10 minutes, until crispy and golden. Cover with foil if the potatoes start going too brown. Be sure to test that the potato slices are cooked through with a skewer before removing from the oven.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Quadrille Publishing.

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