Finnish cuisine is full of odd dishes
The traditional Finnish food is simple but tasty. Finnish diet is fresh
and healthy because many of the ingredients come straight from the nature.
Local specialities and traditional delicacies are worth trying.
Traditionally Finns eat berries, whole wheat products, fish, meat, milk
products, vegetables and potatoes. Hunting and fishing have a long tradition in Finland.
Spices have been adopted from other countries because in the old days spices were rare specialties in Finland. The life was rough and at that
time spices were a bit too luxury and way too expensive.
Although shops sell nowadays everything many people go to the forest and pick berries and mushrooms by themselves. After that they deepfreeze
the berries and enjoy them during the rest of the year.
Finns have a saying: "Eat well, feel good."
Finns think that the breakfast is the most important meal of the day
and that's why it's good to eat well to have some energy for the day.
For breakfast Finns eat bread with light margarine, tomato, cucumber,
cheese or cold cuts meat. Bread is usually made of whole wheat. Porridges,
cereals, yoghurt, eggs and fruits are also eaten for breakfast. For drink
Finns have milk, juices or coffee. Finns really like coffee. Finland is the world leader in coffee consumption statistics.
Meals can be traditional Finnish dishes or anything that can be eaten round the world. Finns eat usually salads, vegetables and bread together with the main meal. Finns appreciate highly home made food and they are not so excited about convenience foods.
In Finland schools offer meals for their students. In universities and universities of applied sciences meals are also cheap because of the governments support.
Local and seasonal delicacies
There is something special for every season of the year. Local treats can be often found from outdoor markets or very well supplied supermarkets.
In hunting season Finns eat venison, hare, ducks and grouse. Reindeer
and salmon are also known as a feast course but also eaten on a
Golden cloudberries are used in many desserts and in cakes.
Cloudberries are well liked berries. Finns have even four different kinds
of names for them. Finns eat also a lot of blueberries and blueberry pie
is often served as a dessert.
Karelian pastries are originally from the region of Karelia but now a
they are eaten everywhere in Finland. The kalakukko fish pie is a well known delicacy from the province of Savo.
Mämmi is a traditional Finnish Eastern dessert. Mämmi is made from water, malt
and rye flour. It doesn't look very pretty, but tastes sweet. Mämmi is
usually eaten with a little bit of milk or cream and sugar.
Oulu has an exotic local dish called rössypottu. It's a soup made of potatoes,
beer, black pudding and pork meat. As the main ingredient is blood, it
divides the opinions among people: some love it and some hate it.
Finns miss salmiakki
when they go abroad
Salmiakki is a salt ammonium chloride bonbon that many Finns
can't live without. Even though the Finns love salmiakki, it is not
appreciated in most other countries.
Only sweets containing NH4Cl as one of the main ingredients can be
called salmiakki. Salty liquorices candy without ammonium chloride is called lakritsi in Finnish. There are also many friends of lakritsi in Finland.
Finns living abroad always tell that out of all things they miss most
salmiakki, Finnish chocolate and rye bread.
Text: Teija Lassi
Photos: Milan Kolarovic