Lindgren · Pippi Longstocking

Pippi’s Good Sandwiches

Author: Lindgren, Astrid
Book: Pippi Longstocking
Difficulty rating: Little Women
Deliciousness rating: Exceeds Expectations

Part of Pippi’s Picnic

There were good sandwiches with meatballs and ham, a whole pile of sugared pancakes, several little brown sausages, and three pineapple puddings. For, you see, Pippi had learned cooking from the cook on her father’s ship. (Lindgren 55)

Did it measure up?

They were indeed good sandwiches! I do think Joy of Cooking‘s Swedish meatball recipe (a favorite of mine) is better than this one. I tried beating this batch of meat in a mixer for 10 minutes, as I do with the Joy of Cooking version, but I shouldn’t have — it made the meat too creepily smooth.


We wondered, “good sandwiches with meatballs and ham”: did that mean having separate meatball sandwiches and ham sandwiches, or meatballs and ham on one sandwich? The answer, according to our MetaFilter friends, seems to be all the above! Ham and cheese sandwiches with mustard, sliced meatballs with cheese or with beet salad, both ham and sliced meatballs on one sandwich — all excellent options for a Swedish feast!

Everyone we asked asserted that, yes, the sandwiches should be open-faced. Jenne and I were puzzled as to how you transport open-faced sandwiches for a picnic, but our consultants instructed us to put pieces of wax paper in between layers so they don’t stick together.

Like so.

Ingredients & Supplies Needed:

  • Bread. We got two kinds from IKEA:
    Bröd Myukkaka: a soft, slightly sweet, white flatbread.

    Brödmix Flerkorn, a mix for multi-grain bread that Jenne had tried before and liked. I had some. I did not love it.
  • Meatballs

    Små köttbullar. See below for the recipe!
  • Ham, cut into thin slices
  • Butter
  • Lingonberry jam
  • Mustard (We tried the Senap Grov Whole-Grain Mustard from IKEA, and it was delicious!)


  1. Butter your favorite bread and layer with items of your choice!



Based on Marianne Grönwall van der Tuuk’s recipe from Best of Swedish Cooking and Baking

Ingredients for 70 Small Meatballs:

  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 tbs butter
  • ¼ cup fine, dry breadcrumbs
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ⅓ cup cream
  • ¾ lb ground beef (sirloin steak)
  • ¼ lb ground pork butt
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • ⅓ cup butter
  • ¼ cup of boiling water


  1. For the best meatballs, select the meat yourself and have it ground. The fresher the meat that’s ground, the better the meatballs.
  2. Sauté the onion in shortening till golden brown.
  3. Soak crumbs in water and cream mixture.
  4. Combine onion, crumb mixture, meats, and seasonings. Mix thoroughly until smooth. Shape into small balls with your hand (wet your hands before handling meat so the meat doesn’t stick).
  5. Fry in butter or margarine until evenly brown, shaking pan continuously to make the balls round.
  6. Add boiling water, cover, and simmer for 5-10 minutes or until tender.


Lindgren, Astrid. New York: Viking Press, 1950.

van der Tuuk, Marianne Grönwall. Best of Swedish Cooking and Baking. Chicago: Rand McNally & Company, 1960.

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