Interview & photo by: Ushiri featuring technohead NOS
Also in this photo our new awesome editor/co-worker Anna Karlsson for “USHiRimagazine online” since our release at the 17th of June 2021, .
I´m happy to ask NOS about this very tough subject even if it was since March that the photo was taken when the release of USHiRimagazine #2 was released. He is also the creator of my Jingle for my radioprogram ” Udda musik med Ushiri “/ ” Odd music with Ushiri” / Ushiri
A while ago it became known to USHiRi Magazine that Flax, the vegan café and farmstand at Sölvesborgsgatan near Folkets Park in the Möllevången (Möllan) area, has carrot kimchi on their menu. CARROT kimchi! This had to be investigated, we thought.
Below is a report of our visit.
USHiRi Magazine (in the form of Anna): Hi, I’m here from Ushiri Magazine. There is supposed to be some pre-ordered kimchi for me, to review for the magazine actually, I believe there was a guy here earlier today?
Flax (unnamed waitress): Oh, that’s right., yeah… Then you could just speak to Buddha here (nods at the guy behind her).
Flax (Buddha Browett, owner and founder of Flax): Yeah, true, there was a guy here earlier today who ordered kimchi and an apple cider for later. Right, ok, let’s see… (turns to the refrigerator), we sell kimchi in jars, do you want to eat straight out of the jar, or would you like a plate with some bread and dressing to go with it?
Anna: Um…, aha, yeah, well, in that case, I’d like a plate, please.
Buddha reaches for a ceramic bowl and fills it up with fresh-made kimchi, bread, and some whitish, creamy dressing. He also takes one of his see-through glass jars with orange, red, green, and yellow kimchi inside and places it on the counter, so that I can take it with me when I go home.
Buddha: There you go. Hope you’ll like it!
From farming to cooking and serving
Close to the window, I find a small café table with a free seat on a wooden sofa. I release myself from my outer jacket and scarf and pour up the (non-alcoholic) apple cider in my glass. Then I place the bottle and the glass in good relation to the kimchi bowl for a short Kodak moment.
A handful of other customers have made their way into the small café. At the end of the bar is a guy reading a book while drinking his coffee. Close to him is another guy pulling some jokes in English, and then there is a girl waiting for her take-out with a yoga math convoluted in a blue roll on the floor. Another female guest comes through the door carrying a mug and an empty plate, probably having had a fika in the outdoor sitting area. There is also a group of friends who come in to chat with Buddha.
Suddenly I realize that I’ve been here before, in this very room. A friend of mine used to run a massage therapy studio at this location, situated at 10, Sölvesborgsgatan, near the Möllevången, Folkets Park, S:t Knuts, and Sorgenfri neighborhoods, south of downtown Malmö.
Where there now seems to be some sort of a storage area, in a room on top of a stair to the left, I would enter the therapy room to lay down and have my back and shoulders’ muscles squeezed by this strong, dedicated, and kind-hearted girl who always seemed to know exactly where to push and stroke to release the tensions and pain I sometimes suffered from.
That’s almost fifteen years ago, though. After she left sometime around 2010 the facility has housed a few other businesses, and two years ago, at the time of midsummer 2019, chef and farmer Buddha Browett bought an espresso machine and opened up Flax.
An Australian in Malmö
Flax (or “common flax” or “linseed”) is a well-known flowering plant, commonly used for linseed oil as well as linen textiles for bed sheets and table cloths. It’s a name that goes well along with the natural, vegan, and also aesthetically thought-through profile of this café.
Buddha Browett had moved to Sweden from his native Sydney, via Barcelona, some years earlier (“because of the weather, haha, no actually I fell in love with a Swedish woman, that I’m no longer together with though).
Step by step he went from selling vegetables at “Bondens Marknad” (“The Farmer’s Market”) at Drottningtorget, to subsequently co-found “REKO-ring Malmö”, a successful selling service where small local farmers can put up crops on Facebook for pre-ordering and weekly distribution straight to customers.
While also having started up and run Sweden’s largest commercial urban farm “Los Perros” (today 2800 m2 big), he realized that one piece was missing though: a restaurant or café outlet for his harvest.
One day in 2019 he found the facility at Sölvesborgsgatan, and that was it.
Today he’s doing farming between Sunday and Wednesday and runs the café and farm stand from Thursday to Saturday.
Uses everything he grows
Having this set-up, he can use basically everything he grows. He no longer needs to find himself getting up at four o’clock in the morning – harvest, pack, and driving to Bondens Marknad at Drottningtorget, trying to sell as much as possible – before ending the day with perhaps some crops still left. Sometimes trying then to sell the surplus to nearby restaurants, sometimes being lucky, sometimes maybe not.
Delivers to local quality restaurants like Julie, Mineral, Qué, and Lyran are still part of the business, but a lot of his harvest is now also used at Flax. Moreover, customers may buy fresh pumpkins, onions of different sorts, potatoes, apples, zucchini, and more, at a small farm stand next to the entrance.
Buddha Browett recounts all of this after I’ve had my little kimchi and bread moment (which really is quite a joy! The kimchi has a nice combination of a lot of different flavors, it has a lagom heat from the chili and is overall very refreshing.)
Buddha: The menu at Flax is made up of things I like. A lot of it actually has carrots in it, like the kimchi but also a lot of other dishes, because carrot is such a useful vegetable that goes along with a lot.
Anna: Ah, that is very pleasant news for CARROTTRiBE members and USHiRi Magazine readers!
Buddha: If you look at the menu I think there are carrots in all the dishes except the one at the top (he points to a blackboard behind the counter, where different dishes and courses are written in white chalk letters. And yes, I do indeed find for instance one soup, one stew, and one grilled sandwich that all in some way contain carrots.)
Anna: If comparing sauerkraut and kimchi (both fermented vegetables; editor’s note), why kimchi?
Buddha: Oh, well, for me that’s just because of the variations possibilities with kimchi. I like to be able to put in like ginger and chili and that kind of stuff.
A popular dish
Kimchi can be used with almost everything and is considered a staple in the Korean kitchen.
I had kimchi myself for the first time back in 2002 when it was served as a side dish to a bowl of chicken dumplings at “Kafé Japan”, in central Gothenburg. Back then kimchi wasn’t that popular or common as it is today in the Swedish food flora, I think. While sushi or thai food at the time had become almost as popular as pizza, kimchi was more like “oh, this is… interesting…. tastes good though!”
Korean culture and lifestyle have made quite an impact on parts of the Western world since then though (with The Squid game, K-Beauty, K-Pop, and Gangnam style, for instance), but exactly how popular kimchi is I’m not quite sure of (since food writing isn’t actually my main pursuit.) But Buddha Browett might know, I figure out, so I decide to ask of his opinion.
Buddha: Kimchi is very popular I think, and it’s getting even more popular all the time now. Our customers really like it!
After my visit to Flax, I draw this picture, inspired by the vibe and features of the place. Incorporated in the drawing is the Korean spelling (김치) of kimchi.
Do you wanna try yourself?
If you want to buy your own kimchi or have it with for example a grilled cheese sandwich, you’ll find Flax on Sölvesborgsgatan 10 near Folkets park in Malmö. Opening hours and other information can be found at Flax’s online site.
We have incoming reports of gangs of carrots loafing about threatening turnips with potato pealers. The incidents seem to be racially motivated and the police are looking into a possible connection to the growing orange power movement.
A spokesperson asks the public to remain vigilant, but not to cater to the agenda of extremists by giving into unfounded suspiscion and hatred: “It is important that we stay united and work together to counteract any divising effect that these senseless actions may have”.
An historian at the university of C.A.R.R.O.T. emphasises the long tradition of peaceful cohabitation between carrots and turnips, which has always stood out in the Scandinavian cuisine: “We have always married well in casseroles. Our different flavors and cultures have reached a mutual height unattainable on their own”.
Our reporter tried to get a comment among membrrs of the chestnut community, but the ones he spoke to said they preferred to remain taste neutral…
Naturally however, occurrances like the ones we’ve seen these last month, raise issues about our current gun regulations. Is it too easy nowadays for anyone to accquire a potato pealer? Do we need tougher restrictions?
The spokesperson for one of the largest suppliers of potato pealers in the country disagrees: “It’s absurd”, he says, “the problem is’nt the pealer, it’s the person. A potato pealer is a tool, and like any tool it can be used without proper discretion. We as a company cannot be held responsible for the misguided actions of a few troublemakers”.
It is obvious that the matter spawns many different views and emotions. Here we believe journalism has a vital role to play as a neutral platform for rational discourse.
Swedish version – Hatbrott mot morötter Nya rapporter har inkommit om ungdomsgäng som driver omkring och hotar rovor med potatisskalare. Brotten tycks vara rasmotiverade och polisen undersöker gängens möjliga anknytning till den växande orange power-rörelsen. Polisens representant ber allmänheten att hålla potatisögonen öppna, men att inte spela extremisterna i händerna genom att ge vika för misstänksamhet och hat. “Det är viktigt att vi står enade och samarbetar för att motverka de polariserande effekterna av dessa vettlösa handlingar”.
En historiker vi har talat med pekar på den långa tradition av fredlig samlevnad mellan rovor och morötter som alltid härskat i det skånska köket. “Vi har alltid gått bra tillsammans i grytor. Våra respektive smaker och kulturer har lyft fram varandra”. Vår reporter har sökt en kastanj för en kommentar, men de hon talat med säger att de vill fortsätta att förhålla sig smakneutrala och avstår från vidare kommentarer.
De beklagliga händelserna har väckt frågor om våra nuvarande vapenlagar. Är det för lätt idag att komma över en potatisskalare? Behövs det skärpt reglering? Talesmannen för den största leverantören av potatisskalare förnekar detta: “det är absurt”, säger han. “Det är inte potatisskalaren som är problemet, utan den som använder den. En potatisskalare är ett verktyg, och som alla verktyg kan det missbrukas. Vi kan inte ta något ansvar för vad några enstaka galningar hittar på”.
Det är tydligt att frågan väcker känslor och åsikter. Många av de vi talat med uttrycker sin frustration med starka ord. En del ger uttryck för sin bitterhet mot myndigheterna, och sin egen maktlöshet. Journalistiken har här en vital roll som neutral plattform för en rationell diskurs.
In opposite to some people’s belief, meat protein isn’t really necessary when building muscels. There are seveal vegan athletes and body builders online…
today, to find the strenght to start this new site, we eat carrot soup.
Ushiri: I feelt a strong urge to start infusing carrots in liquid form into my body since I feelt the taste was a bit weak and there for this seems like the most unlogical idea to get more carrot inside you 🙂
Anna: I like the texture with chunky bits of vegetables and cheese. The overall taste is a little bit anonymous but good anyhow…
Some months ago, Svenska Dagbladet also told about what good can come out of different carrot usages. If you have a scar for example, just put some carrot (like aloe vera) on it, and watch it heal. In all we give this Swedish carrotsoupfrom Felix 3 carrots in total.
If you have other recipes feel free to write to us 🙂
Choking on a a carrot is the golden dream for the hidden turtles, they may be big they may be small but eternity awaits as all. Now and forever. Let the eternal carrot watch over you while you move on.