When I started blogging back in June, I knew only of one other foodblogger and Melissa of the beautiful Traveler’s Lunchbox also happens to be my fellow resident of Edinburgh. Over the last few months some other Edinburgh-based bloggers have been popping by – Anita (originally from Finland) of the Madness of Space Cat, Shauna (originally from Australia) of What’s Wrong Pussycat, 'everyday chef' of, well, everyday chef. And it looks there are other bloggers in Edinburgh and elsewhere in Scotland who read my blog. Thanks!
When I returned from Estonia in August, I met up with Anita for a chat and cuppa and gave her a bar of Fazer chocolate. Fazer is a really delicious Finnish chocolaterier – and as Anita, herself Finnish, hadn’t been at home for a while, she had asked me to bring something. (Fazer is widely available in Estonia, as is the Swedish Marabou. You’d probably have to search for Cadbury like a needle in a haystack).
Well, Anita did go to Finland in October and kindly asked me if there’s anything she can bring me from Finland. There are two food items that I always think of as related to Finland. One is the squishy-squeeky cheese juustoleipä/leipäjuusto, and the other are Karjalanpiirakkat or Karelian pasties (above). Both are widely available in Estonia as well. And though it is possible to make both of them – frying cottage cheese results (apparently) in leipäjuusto, and here is a recipe for Karelian pastries, but making the latter can be quite time consuming (I can personally say, after having baked them once. All worth it though..)
When I met Anita for a coffee last Thursday, she gave me six beauties that she had brought from Finland.
The traditional filling for Karelian pastries is cooked rice porridge, but my favourite is the potato mash stuffed kind (above), and I’m also partial to the carrot mash version. You pop them under a grill, heat them through and then cover with egg butter (well, egg, butter, salt and some parsley for instance).
And then you have these delicious and very filling pastries. They are very popular for breakfast in Finland, but I had them for dinner. And then again for breakfast. And then for lunch. Two each time:)
Kiitos, Anita! And good luck with the new job!