Discover Swedish Bakery Delicacies Without Leaving Israel.
One of my favorite things to do before I travel anywhere is to research the culinary delicacies of the destination. Just because most of us will not be traveling this summer, it doesn’t mean we cannot explore the culinary delicacies from other countries. While most people know that they can get your fix of Swedish meatballs, pickled herring and crispbread at Ikea, they may not be aware of Fika (Tzohar) Swedish bakery that is expanding across Tel Aviv and slowly reaching Jerusalem.
Michael Rothschild who is originally from Stockholm opened the first Fika store in 2016 on Tushiya Street in Tel Aviv. Since then he has opened two other stores on Dizengoff Street and Gordon Street, as well as a stand at the Farmer’s Market in Shuk HaNamal. Fika means a coffee break in Swedish and Michael claims that Fika is the first Scandinavian bakery in the Middle East and the first kosher Scandinavian bakery in the world.
To celebrate their expansion into the Jerusalem market, Michael sent me a selection of sweet and savory baked goods from Fika for me to sample. I invited a Swedish friend to join me and help me validate the authenticity of the delicacies.
The simple Emmer Sourdough bread (NIS 24) was possibly the best sourdough I have had in Israel. The outside crust was hard and crisp and the inside was moist with a distinct sour taste. Fika also produces sourdough loaves from rye or spelt, as well as a traditional Danish Rye bread (NIS 30) with sunflower and flaxseed and a Swedish Rye bread (NIS 25) with a hint of citrus, anise and fennel. I am very fascinated to try their Saffron Challah (NIS 24) with my next order.
The Cheese and Kalamata Olive Ciabatta (NIS 14) was very tasty but quite salty and less unique than the sourdough.
Moving on to the sweet delicacies, we started with the simple bullar, sweet yeast buns which are the Swedish equivalents to Danish pastries and French Viennoiserie (croissants etc). The dough is less flaky and more bread-like, which I really enjoyed and it is made with real butter. My favorite was the Cardamon Bullar (NIS 13), which is such a unique flavor for a European pastry and goes really well with a nice strong coffee. We also really liked the Cinnamon Bullar (NIS 13) and Saffron Bullar (NIS 15) flavors and next time I would love to try the pistachio and caramel nut bullar. Fika also sells a variety of savory cheese bullar, as well as vegan versions of the cinnamon and cardamom bullar, which are parev.
From the cake section, we loved Fika’s take on a Swedish Love Bite (NIS 14/piece or NIS 65/cake) which was a rich, gooey, flourless chocolate fudge cake. We also enjoyed the classic Vacuum Cleaner (Dammsugare) (NIS 12), a chocolate almond sponge cake, covered with marzipan and dipped in chocolate at both ends.
On my list of Swedish specialties to add to a future order from Fika are the Swedish Princess Cake, Flourless Chocolate Dime (Daim) cake and the spicy ginger biscuits.
Fika delivers around Israel, including Herzliya, Raanana, Ramat HaSharon, Petach Tikva, Kfar Saba, Hod HaSharon and Yehud. The Fika van visits Jerusalem every other Thursday from 4 to 7 pm at the Beit HaKeremy Community Center parking lot on Sderot Herzl and orders must be placed advance.