This is one of the great classical Swedish dishes. The burgers are magically light, quite unlike an ordinary burger. They are created using finely minced veal and made luxurious by the addition of egg yolks and cream. I’m not sure that I am supposed to eat them on a low cholesterol diet, but they are irresistible!
They were first created by Amalia Wallenberg, a member of a prominent Swedish financial and industrial dynasty. The recipe was first published in 1879 and has been very popular in Sweden ever since.
Amalia Wallenberg. Photo: TT
The classic accompaniments are small green peas, carrots, potato puree and lingonberries. It is also often served with fried chanterelle mushrooms.
Preparation: 5 minutes (Plus 30 minutes chilling time)
Cooking: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
• Use freshly ground veal. If you can’t get good mince, grind it yourself.
• Make sure all the ingredients are really cold when you start mixing, otherwise the mixture is likely to separate.
• It is worth using good quality homemade breadcrumbs for this dish.
• Add a couple of pinches of epice riche if you have some.
3 slices of white bread, crusts removed
450g (1 lb) veal mince
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground white peppar
Pinch of epice riche
4 egg yolks
250ml (1 cup) double (heavy) cream
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp oil for frying
1. Use a food processor to make bread crumbs. Divide the breadcrumbs between two large plates or two sheets of baking parchment.
2. Mix the veal mince, salt, white pepper and epice riche (optional) in a bowl with a fork or a food processor.
3. Add the egg yolks, one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition.
4. Slowly add the cream, with the motor running if you use a food processor. You will end up with a loose mixture, quite different to an ordinary beef burger mixture.
5. Chill the mixture for 30-60 minutes as this makes it easier to shape.
6. Heat two frying pans and add a tablespoon of oil and a tablespoon of butter to each pan.
7. When the frying pans are hot, divide the mixture into four portions and spoon one portion on to one of the plates with breadcrumbs on. Use a knife to shape into a burger, about 1¼ cm (about ½”) thick. Top the burger with breadcrumbs from the other plate. Place in one of the frying pans.
8. Repeat with the other three portions.
9. Fry the burgers for about 3 minutes per side until they are golden brown, but don’t overcook them.
10. Serve with potato puree, peas and carrots or mushrooms and a spoonful of lingonberries or lingonberry jam.