December 23, 2016

You have all been absolutely wonderful. 
Thank you for reading the blog and comments you have left.

Have a wonderful Christmas and a great 2017. 

See you the next year with more recipes.


Winter Bread

December 22, 2016

A traditional Finnish Christmas bread is marked with a cross on the top, sweet and full with spices. A good addition is leftover mash as many Finns are brewing kotikalja (a malty low-alcohol, home-made table beer closely resembling kvass) for Christmas. This is one version of these breads, which are lovely addition to breakfast breads throughout the winter.

1 bread 

2 dl (200 g) mash and 1,5 dl (150 g) water 
or 3 dl (300 g) boiling water and 0,5 dl (40 g) rye malt 
30 g fresh yeast 
1 tsp salt 
1 dl (140 g) Scandinavian dark syrup (or light molasses) 
3 tsp Seville orange peel powder (bitter orange peel powder) 
2 dl (230 g) sugared lingonberry mash 
2 dl (100 g) rye flour 
9 dl (500 g) dark wheat flour 
50 g butter 
For the glaze: 
syrup water (half and half) 

Stir the yeast, salt and syrup into the lukewarm mash and water mix. Add Seville orange peel powder and sugared lingonberry mash. Gradually mix in the flours and knead the dough for couple of minutes. Add soft butter and knead for further 8 minutes. 

Cover and leave to rise at room temperature for 30 minutes. 

Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it gently. Take a piece of dough aside. Form the rest of the dough into a round loaf and place it on the baking tray. Decorate the bread with the piece of dough you set aside using water as a glue. 

Cover and leave to rise for 30 minutes. 

Preheat the oven to 175°C. Brush with syrup water and bake for an hour and 15 minutes. Brush with syrup water after an hour again and the third time 10 minutes later. 

Cover and let cool on a wire rack.


Oat Bread

December 15, 2016

Many food agencies worldwide, including The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), have approved health claims attributed to oat. Oat bran contains beta glucan, which has the ability to reduce cholesterol levels, decrease the elevation of blood glucose after a meal and improve digestion. 

No wonder, that the demand for oat is rising, particularly in Europe and the US. Where all oat grains come from? Where do your oat grains come from? There's a good chance that they come from Finland, which it's the second-largest exporter of oat in the world, sending about 350,000 tons abroad annually. 

Finland's cool weather, clean soil and farming practices that include fewer pesticides and fertilizers provide optimum conditions to oat farming. As a result, the excellent quality of Finnish oat make them highly attractive to oat product companies. 

Finnish bakeries offer many different sorts of oat bread that meet the needs of consumers, but a home-baked bread is always the best. This is one of my favorite recipes. 

2 breads 

8 dl (800 g) milk or water 
50 g fresh yeast 
2 tsp salt 
2 tbsp vegetable oil 
2 dl (200 g) sunflower seeds 
2 dl (70 g) rolled oats 
10 dl (550 g) dark wheat flour 
5 dl (300 g) wheat flour 

Dissolve yeast and salt into lukewarm milk or water. Add oil, sunflower seeds and rolled oats. Gradually mix in flours and knead the dough about 10 minutes. 

Don't leave to rise. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it gently. Divide the dough in half. Shape the pieces into two loaves and roll them in rolled oats. Line two baking trays with parchment papers and place the breads on them. 

Leave to rise at room temperature. 

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Bake for 30–40 minutes. The bread is ready if it sounds hollow, when you knock on its base. 

Let cool on a wire rack.


Top 3 Christmas Breads

December 09, 2016

Islander Bread

Almost every baker here in Finland knows this classic recipe, because Islander Bread is The Christmas Bread here in Turku and all over Finland. Everyone must have a loaf or two waiting for the dinner on Christmas Eve.

Islander Bread is a perfect match with smoked ham, fish, home-made fresh cheese or gouda. Or, why not to try it with blueberry jam and goat cheese?

Christmas Bread

This festive rye bread combines all the best parts of Christmas, almonds, dates and dark chocolate. How could you resist it? What's more, you can bake this bread with sourdough starter or with yeast.

Finnish Christmas Loaf

I bake Islander Bread for Christmas, but my family likes traditional Finnish Christmas Loaf too. So, I have a habit of baking the latter in November. This is a lovely bread as such, but also a delicious toast for breakfast.

Welcome to the renewed site!

December 08, 2016

Butter Rolls

I'm sitting here with a cup of café au lait. It's done! I have just launched a new version of this blog. I hope you enjoy the "new" site as much as I do. No need to worry, all the old recipes are still here, and new ones are coming as they have done before, approximately one recipe per week.

I'd also like to ask you to do something. If you tried a recipe from the blog, please take a minute to leave a comment on it describing your results, good or bad. This way you can really help people who may be thinking about making a particular recipe. 




Polar Night Granola

December 01, 2016

My son has gone nuts for this granola. He would like to eat this every morning, but his boring mother keeps making porridge too. So, we don't eat this on every breakfast, but often. This is a lovely way to start a new day during polar night and black winter season. 

11 dl (400 g) old fashioned oats 
2 dl (80 g) rice flakes 
1 dl (35 g) coconut flakes, coarsely crushed 
2 dl (170 g) brown sugar 
4 dl (250 g) peanuts 
1 dl (100 g) sunflower seeds 
0,5 dl (30 g) sesame seeds 
2 dl (200 g) water 
1 dl (90 g) coconut oil 
1 tsp ginger 
2 dl (1 cup, US) dried dates or plums 

Combine the flakes, sugar, roughly chopped nuts and seeds in a large bowl. Mix the water, oil and ginger and pour the wet-mix into the dry-mix. Stir well. Line a large baking tray with a baking paper sheet and spread the granola on top. 

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Place the baking tray on the center rack of the heated oven. Bake for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce the temperature to 150°C and bake for 10 minutes. Make sure the granola is completely dry and remove from the oven. 

Allow the granola to cool for 30 minutes. Sprinkle dried dates or plums (cut in raisin-size pieces) on top. Stir well. Cool the granola completely. 

Store in an airtight jar. Enjoy with yoghurt.