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Reykjavik: Local Food Month, October 2012

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Café Loki
26/09/2012
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When Cafe Loki’s owner Chef Hronn moved from a career in textile design, to cooking, she brought with her the principle of using only the very best raw materials for her creations. Sourcing from all over Iceland, Hronn is single-handedly bringing back onto the national radar, ‘traditional, homemade dishes’ with recipes that have all but fallen out of use. They are the ones that Icelandic Mums would have spread on the tea table back in the 1970s – simple, hearty and without a care for calories.
 
Hronn’s menu simply states: ‘Icelandic Meat Soup, Icelandic Plate, Homemade Bread and Cakes.’ And what an understatement that turned out to be. How can I successfully conjur up my own dish, back here in London, of Hronn’s moreish Plokkfiskur – a creamy mash of warm haddock and potato oozing over equally warm home baked rye bread. Bread that had spent the night in a slow oven to emerge risen, chewy and warm just minutes before I walked in the door. And on every slice of that brilliant bread there was butter – lots of slightly salted butter and toppings of smoked lamb, herring & egg and lastly, wafer-thin smoked trout  - the sleight of hand of some talented local smoker.  All manner of fats were present on the plate, from saturated to omega, and the meal was all the tastier for it.
 
I had to have a cuppa –an Icelandic moss and Arctic thyme infusion. ‘Good for chest complaints,’ advised Hronn whose success, I think, lies in recreating nostalgia foods from her own childhood, and her knack for sourcing top notch ingredients. The view over the cathedral doesn’t hurt either.
 
Lokastígur 28 101 Reykjavík
www.cafeloki.is phone number: 466 2828
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