An American inspired dinner, part I – amuse bouche pre starter and starter

When I was young I decided to go abroad for a year as an exchange student to the USA. I was so excited, especially when I got to fill in where I would like to go! I was thinking about sunny California, or cool New York! Of course this was just for the organizations guidance and little did I guess that I was to be sent to the deepest south, the middle of the bible belt and home to country & western and Graceland, Tennessee.

To say that it was a bit of a culture shock was an understatement, everything was so incredibly different and nothing even came close to resemble the US TV shows we get in Sweden! A pick up truck was the coolest thing to have, flannel shirts for the guys was a must and there were a lot of girls at school getting up at 5 AM to apply make up and make sure that the hair would not loose any volume in the humid heat (think hairspray and lots of it!). It took a while but I got some new friends and adapted, some of the people I met there I am still in touch with and they are very dear friends!

Southern foods, what a revelation! Fried chicken, corn bread, pulled pork, loaded potato skins, creamed corn, there was no end to all these amazing comfort foods and I loved it! One thing I never had before was corn bread or corn pudding (not the same thing). I did a lot of research and in the end decided to make corn pudding. I found lots of different ways of making it and this is a sort of hybrid with a hint of truffle.Here are my American inspired dishes with a slight twist! I had so many ideas of what to cook I got slightly carried away with the number of dishes but it was fun!


Celery with blue cheese dressing and bacon crumble amuse bouche I had never tasted blue cheese dressing before I was in the US and it goes so well with celery. Bacon, of course, makes everything taste better.

Blue cheese dressing

Preparation time 5 minutes 

Cooking time 0 minutes 

Serves – makes 1 small bowl, I had plenty left over


  • 250 gr or 9 oz blue cheese, I used Stilton
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 dl or 1/2 cup fat free natural yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp creme fraiche
  • A little milk of the mix needs to loosen
  • pepper

Place everything in a blender and mix, not too smooth if you want blue cheese chunks.



Surf n’Turf, Comfit chicken wings & prawns with a spicy citrus glaze

Spicy citrus glaze – I found this in my favourite Swedish food magazine Mat & Vänner but as it is in Swedish I have translated the recipe, it was a small pre starter

Preparation time 5 minutes 

Cooking time 10 minutes 

Serves 4-6


  • 1 orange 
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 150 gr or 5.2 oz muscovado sugar
  • 1 small chipotle chilli
  • 1/2 star anise
  • salt

Zest the citrus and set aside. Juice the citrus fruits in to a pan. Add the sugar, chopped chipotle chilli and the 1 star anise. Let boil for about 5 minutes until reduced and slightly thickened. Sieve, add the citrus zest and taste with salt. Let cool and brush on before serving.



Pulled lamb with Asian slaw in a lettuce wrap

I didn’t make any lamb crackling but followed the recipe here and reduced cooking time to 2 1/2 hours.

I pulled the meat 17AugPulledLamb

I also made some “lamb floss” to go on top 17Aug_LambFloss

I matched this with a hot and sour Asian slaw, see recipe here . I used mange tout, orange pepper and the crispy part of the bok choy for the slaw. The lamb is so rich it needs a bit of acidity to cut through.


After this we had a bit of a break, sipping wine and letting the red wine breathe a bit before the main course.

I have entered this to Javelin Warriors always great Made with Love Mondays. I love to enter as it always makes me think twice about what ingredients I use!


4 Responses to “An American inspired dinner, part I – amuse bouche pre starter and starter”
  1. I’m so intrigued by the description of the corn pudding – I’ve had a version of a corn pudding before which seemed to be a cross between a pudding and cornbread. However, I’m not sure it was a traditional corn pudding! Everything sounds delicious and I love the look of the pulled lamb and the sound of the homemade blue cheese dressing. So tasty!

    • petra08 says:

      Hi Mark
      The corn pudding is coming in the next blog! 🙂 I think it might need some refining but it was still good 🙂

  2. Devon says:

    I had the distinct honour of enjoying this meal, so can say first-hand that it was…Delicious!! Yes, with a capital ‘D’! The Pulled Lamb with Asian slaw was an early favourite – who wouldn’t love lamb floss?! We’ll be giving this a try at home…no pressure…! 🙂

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