it’s that time of the year (month? week?) that i have nothing better to do than to write, and since it’s officially winter now, i’ve been feeling hungry all the time. so of course it’s only natural that i decided to write about food.
i wrote once about Finnish foods, but back then i didn’t write any of the simple, everyday “snacks” we eat here in Finland. (or at least i eat them.) some of them are traditional, some of them are new-ish, and there are some that i haven’t even plucked up the courage to try myself, but still, i’m gonna write about them.
and before we start, let me just say that the pictures shown below are NOT mine, they’re borrowed from various websites & blogs around the internet, just for my own personal use with no bad intentions. if you see that one of them is yours and get offended, let me know so i can put it down.
1. Karjalanpiirakka (Karelian pie): i once tried to explain this to my late grandmum, “it’s like a pie but made of rice”. yeah, needless to say, she didn’t quite get it. okay, to be fair, it has rye crust, but the middle part is usually rice (and then there are the more modern variations of potato, or carrot fillings). it’s salty, and we usually eat it with egg butter, or munavoi, which is basically mashed boiled eggs mixed with butter. nyum!
2. Pinaattiohukainen (spinach pancake): i just recently tried this myself. it’s just like your normal pancake, but added with spinach, hence the green colour. originally it’s eaten with lingonberry jam, but i usually eat it with some sort of salad (Italian salad or potato salad). depending on what you eat it with, it can be a salty or a sweet snack.
3. Veriohukainen (blood pancake): just like spinach pancake, but with *gulp* cow blood. this i have NOT tried yet, so i can’t really tell you how it tastes like. it’s also usually eaten with the lingonberry jam or with some meat (reindeer meat, but then that won’t be a snack anymore). one day IF i ever find enough courage to try it, i’ll prolly update this post to honestly say how i like it. but then again, don’t hold your breath!
4. Korvapuusti (cinnamon roll): i’m sure you’re all familiar with it, as it can be found almost everywhere and anywhere around the world. rumour has it that it originated in Sweden, and since Finland used to be a part of Sweden, it’s basically also originally Finnish. 😀 i just learned how to do it myself too 2 weeks ago, with my mother-in-law dictating the directions and ingredients. they came up so well that they were finished before i could even take pictures of them.
5. Lihapiirakka (meat pie): Finnish version of hot dog. it’s basically pastry filled with minced meat, and we usually eat it by cutting it up in the middle, put pickled cucumber salad and sausage, add a bit of ketchup and mustard… and there you go, a Finnish hot dog!
6. Paistetut muikut (pan-fried vendace): this is one of my all time fave Finnish snacks! there’s not a single non-Finnish person to whom i’ve introduced this food who doesn’t like it. the funny thing is that there’s no special recipe to cook them, just fry them in a pan with lots of butter, and serve them with mashed potato & garlic sauce. you can always find them in the marketplace on the Helsinki main harbour in the summer, and also in the maalaismarkkinat (traditional marketplace/bazaar thingy that goes around the country all year round, except in the summer).
7. Makkaraperunat (sausage and potatoes): another “classic” snack you can find almost anywhere and everywhere. they’re usually put on a paper platter (like the fried vendace), and you pour ketchup & mustard on top of them. sometimes they’re also served with pickled cucumber salad (like the one you eat with the meat pie).
8. Lakritsi/laku & salmiakki (licorice and salted licorice): one of the biggest Finnish mysteries that i haven’t quite understood yet. Finns and licorice/salmiakki go hand-in-hand like Finns and lotteries (another thing i still don’t get). no matter what kind of mixed sweet bags you purchase here, there will always, ALWAYS be licorice included. a pack of wine gums? there’s licorice flavour gums inside the bag. a pack of choco covered candies? there’s choco covered licorice candies inside the bag. (to see my point, please view the pics below. those black ones in the bag? they’re licorice.)
i can still tolerate the licorice taste, and as long as i don’t consume it too much, it’s quite okay. but the salted licorice… oh God. the first time i tried it, i was damn sure somebody poured hair-colouring chemical to the candy by accident. it tasted exactly like that. not that i’ve ever eaten hair-colouring chemical, but you know that smell you smell when you get your hair coloured? well. that’s exactly it. but anyway, yeah, this is a super duper popular snack in Finland. it’s so popular, you can even find ice cream, tea, and chocolate bars with licorice flavours. and just for the record: i actually do like the licorice ice cream. 😉
that’s it for now, i might continue this again one day, but now i’m getting so hungry after writing all this, and i just ate dinner!
REMINDER: the pictures shown in this blog post are NOT mine, they’re only borrowed from various websites & blogs around the internet, just for my own personal use with no bad intentions. if you see that one of them is yours and get offended, do let me know so i can put it down immediately. thank you and sorry beforehand!