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In The JOK Kitchen with Sweet Paul

sweet paul interview

Sweet Paul is the gorgeous and creative blog created by Paul Lowe in 2007.  His blog filled with recipes and crafts with a Scandinavian sensibility turned into a highly praised online magazine in 2009 and then a print quarterly in 2012.  Paul has inspired and influenced countless people with his stylish take on crafts and food.  Paul was raised in Norway and has always been passionate about cooking, crafting and decorating.  He has been a food and craft stylist for more than twenty years and just recently published his first cook/craft book, Sweet Paul Eat and Make: Charming Recipes and Kitchen Crafts You Will Love.  The book is filled with easy to make recipes, most of which just happen to be kosher.   In addition to the recipes that are organized by time of day, Morning, Brunch, Noon and Night, Paul includes easy to do crafts for decorating a table to added kitchen touches, like his utensil hanger, made from every day items, turned into a fun decorative piece.

Sweet Paul - Utensil Hanger

We are lucky to be giving away a copy of the Sweet Paul book and to also to share this Q&A I got from Paul.

You grew up in Norway, When did you move to NY and What do you miss most about Norway?

Not that much really, my family of course and a few food items but I can say with my hand on my heart that I haven't felt homesick once.

I love that it is important to you that everything be real and not always perfect, how have you been able to work as a stylist and live by that philosophy?

When I started out all food in magazines and ad's looked like plastic.  I said from day 1 that I don't care to do that.  I slowly managed people to see it my way that food needs to look real and not like it came from a factory.

I'm really happy to see that the plastic food has more or less disappeared from magazines and ad's.

salmon eggs benedict

What is your earliest cooking memory?

My earliest memory is the smell of coffee.  My grandmother would make strong coffee every morning.  The smell of coffee still makes me feel safe.

Of taste would have to be her pancakes that she made paper thin like crepes and filled it with her homemade blueberry jam.

Most of your crafts use every day items we all have like tart pans or hangers, how do you get inspired for your crafts?

It can come from everywhere.

Like now I have been collecting egg cartons for a year and wanted to do something with them.

I cut one open and it looked like a bird face, so I turned them into bird masks for Halloween.

My best idea is hatched out in the bath tub!

Sweet Paul - Chicken with Olives & Capers

Why did you decide to break up your book for crafts and food by time of day?

Because that's how we eat and I wanted the book to reflect that.

There are a lot of recipes with eggs in them, what do you like most about eggs?

Eggs are my all time favorite ingredients. I eat 3 eggs every morning.  Never get tired of them.

They are so versatile and I just love using them, scrambles, poached, fried, just stop me…

For the recipes and photos linked to: Text credit: Excerpted from SWEET PAUL EAT & MAKE, © 2014 by Paul Lowe Einlyng. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

Photo credit: © Alexandra Grablewski.

Note - not all the recipes in this book are kosher, but most are or can be adapted for a kosher kitchen, plus the crafts are great for everyone.

Sweet Paul Cookbook