The Coffe table
Things from the flood
Simon Stålenhag | Things from the flood
Things From the Flood is an illustrated book by Simon Stålenhag that I really connect with. It reminds me of Sweden but with a surreal Sci-Fi fictious future past. In this new series here at The Meshmen Blog I will flick through some of my favourite inspirational books, have a cup of coffee and share a recipe that goes with the mood or the season.
Source of inspiration
Reading the book Things From The Flood by Simon Stålenhag in a way reminds me of my childhood. Not that my childhood was set in a Sci-Fi futuristic Sweden but the illustrations have so many familiar themes from the late 70s and 80s mixed with some kind of alternative alien invasion. I have this and many other books laying around in my studio. When I have a spare moment while waiting for texture exports or baking a bake point in Mari, I might pick it up flick through a few pages.
The Russian teddy bears Chapter
In one of the illustrations in this chapter I can see shapes of a very specific water tower from my home town Örebro. It’s a very familiar place but very far away from my childhood where my family had “Fika”. We used to eat the green kermit pastry at the top of the water tower looking out into the distance where we could see the blue mountains of Nerkes Kil in the distance.
In the illustration the water tower has been transplanted into a suburban block which resembles the local power plants oil cistern. Everything is covered in a grey blanket and a boy is holding a 357 magnum pointed at his teddy bear outside the parking lot. If I close my eyes I can almost smell the early December snow mixed with the wet muddy smell of late November. I can hear the distant noise of crows sitting in the nearby trees and the road behind me heading towards Nerkes Kil passing my father’s ICA supermarket.
The russian teddy bear illustration
From the book Things from the flood
My grandmother’s stair
Another illustration in one of the chapters reminds me of my grandmothers staircase leading down to the cellar where I spent a lot of time as a child. One day on my way down to the basement to hang out in my grandfather’s tool shop I remember seeing an old Blå Mocca Mellanrost tin can. Its original intent was to store ground coffee but back then it was repurposed to contain bits and bobs of god knows what. On page 74 I found this illustration of the mocca tin can and it instantly brought me back to the staircase in Degerfors.
ICA under attack
I mentioned earlier that my father had an ICA supermarket and I remember seeing smaller ICA food stores scattered here and there around the countryside. Every little village had its own local ICA where you bought the essentials or an ice cream. On page 86 we see one of these small ICA stores in the countryside that has since been forced in to extinction. Yet in the illustration it’s still alive but under attack by an alien invasion with tentacles and all.
“A nice cup of hot espresso from the blue mountains coupled with an inspirational book and a cinnamon bun is not a bad way to spend an evening”
Meshmen’s Coffee Table
Yes…I’m a coffee snob!
At work I could open my own coffee shop! I have my own grinder. I have my own filters. I have my own Aeropress. I have my own array of different coffee blends. A few of you who read this also enjoy it together with me when I’m dong my Meshmen live streams. One of my favourite coffee beans at the moment is called Kenya AA. Enjoying coffee and a cinnamon bun with a nice book is not a bad moment in life.
Things from the flood
Tales from the loop
After i first came into contact with Things From The Flood I googled and found another source of inspiration in the form of Tales From The Loop. It Features the same kind of “Kitchen sink Sci-Fi” as the author Simon Stålenhag says on his twitter account and I highly recommend this book at well
Swedish Cinnamon Buns
This classic recipe we all learned to love was on the back on a flour package. Its not rocket science but I always makes it with a twist. Read the recipe and break it. I always add something else or more of a ingredients. Everyone that have been baking sweet buns knows that an extra pinch of sugar and fat brings the best in the buns. That is just how it is. I also add some Vanilla sugar and cardamom in my cinnamon buns . The true Meshmen way of baking. Shoot from the hip and break the rules
- 5dl Milk (finger varm)
- 50g yeast
- 150g butter
- 1dl caster suggar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1,4 liter (800gr) flour
- 150g suggar
- 1 dl caster suggar
- 2 tablespoons Cinnamon
Meshmen’s Cinnamon Buns
I love the smell of fresh yeast
- If using fresh yeast, add the warm milk 37C, to a mixing bowl and add the yeast; stir until dissolved.
In sweden this is called Finger warm
(If using active dry yeast (granules), pour the warm milk into a bowl, sprinkle in the yeast and whisk together. Cover with clingfilm and leave in a warm place for about 15 minutes to become bubbly.
- Add the now melted butter butter into the yeast mixture, then add the sugar, salt and a pinch of cardamon and mix together
- Add the flour, save 1/2 dl for the finnishing
- Work the dough about 5min in a baking machine with a dough hook or 10min by hand until it feels flexible and not to sticky. Let the dough set under a kitchen towel for 30min
- now knead the dough on the baking table. use some of the leftover flour from before. After you worked the dough together divide it in 4 parts
- now with a rolling pin knead the a dough into a 5mm thick sheet.
Mix the filling ingredients
- spread the filling in a thin and even layer on each of your sheet of dough, then roll them together to a roll
- cut each roll into 10 pieces and put into baking forms and let it set for another 40min in a varm and not to drafty place
- Preheat the oven to 225-250C
- before you pet the buns int the oven, whack an egg in a bowl and with a kitchen brusg you coat the top of the puns and sprinkle pearl sugar in the top
Kapoww into the middle of the own for 5-10 mintes
Make your favourite coffee and sit down in your favourite couch and read your book
I just love to sip my espresso from these small bad boys. I got them from Steve when I was working at Cinesite and now I found them on amazon a perfect go away gift for the Star War fan.