Food, Glorious Food!

[3rd September 2013]

I don’t know if it is because Ove and I moved in on the same day, but for some reason we just clicked as hall buddies. I have very few possessions, just my enormous Samsonite, backpacking rucksack and a few boxes, so I just rented a car for a couple of hours to move my shit from X’s mom’s basement— cause that’s where they were while X and I were traveling— to my new place. On my first run up, I dump the suitcase and backpack and am about to go back downstairs to get the boxes. Ove and his dad had evidently just finished getting his furniture in order, and were also heading downstairs. I introduce myself since we’re both new and he’s the first person from the residence that I meet , and after Ove’s dad drives off in his Volvo station-wagon with a now empty trailer attached to it, he offers to help me bring my boxes up since he’s now waiting for his mom to arrive with his boxes. We’re done in two runs up to the rooms, and I go to return the car. When I come back, I help him and his mom bring his stuff up, as a return for his help. Dude has a lot of stuff if the amount of boxes he has is anything to go by!

Know the film Drinking Buddies? The one where this guy and girl are friends because thet really like beer. Ove and I are more like food buddies, if you will. After moving in we sort of just continued to get along swimmingly, and fast forward to a couple of days later: I’m in the common room, not so much studying as looking through all the papers I got at my introductory lectures and the course books I just borrowed from the library. By now I’ve decided the common room is my number one hang out space, where I do most of my studying during the afternoons and early evenings. I prefer a bit of background activity around me when I study over silence.

So that day Ove come into the kitchen with grocery bags ready to make food— he likes to make large quantities of food a couple of time a week and freeze his lunch boxes in, I find out— sets his ingredients out on the counter island and is all but really to start when he suddenly swears. I’m already curious as to what he’s going to make because of the strange sausage thing on the counter, so I decide to ask what the matter is whereupon he tells me that he has forgotten to buy mustard. I have it, since I’m mainly a sandwich eater nowadays, and tell him to help himself to it.

So, as a thank you, he lets me have a portion of his “falukorv” (the internet tells me it’s called “Falun sausage” in English) and I readily accept it since I’m not aware I’d had such an odd sausage before. At first I think it is a fat, doughnut shaped red sausage, but then I watch Ove peel off the red outer layer and expose a whitish Thüringer-like thing. My interest is further piqued by how he prepares it, despite my experience of German sausage cuisine and circa a year of living in Sweden, I’ve never seen sausage being prepared the way Ove was doing it. Needless to say, I abandon my books on the sofa and go over to watch him cook. He gratinates it with cheese after stuffing slices of apples and onions into the cuts he makes into the sausage. I tell him that I’d never eaten this sausage before, and he is super surprised, and lists all the different dishes people make with it, among them Korv Stroganoff— which of course I have eaten before several times.

As for the review of the dish, I gotta say, graninated Falukorv is not my favourite; it tastes very bland, but I guess I like it if you make a stroganoff out of it.

After we eat, Ove says that I can just borrow stuff from his cupboard if I need anything. I joke by stating that he can make such an offer because he knows I’m too short to reach his cupboard, and we engage in a banter that somehow ends up with me offering to treat him to my dinner next time I actually bother to cook something.

“Are you sure it’ll be safe to eat?” he jokes.

“Of course! I don’t always cook, but when I do I make the best damn meal in this floor has eaten for days.”

That boast causes him to hold me to my word. So like on Thursday, when X is coming over I’ll be making risotto for three.


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