Saturday, December 6, 2008

Finnish saffron cinnamon buns

My homesickness begins traditionally today and keeps on growing until I go home for christmas. A set of feelings evoke in me, reminding to appreciate everyone and everything back home. Sure it's a melancolic time, but that word has more of a positive than a negative meaning forme Missing someone is better than not having anyone to miss at all...
Someone once said to that it's okay to leave, as long as you have a place to come back to. I had to move elsewhere to understand what he meant by it.
Happy Independance Day!

Korvapuusti is a typical finnish cinnamon bun made with yeast. Directly translated the word actually means a slap on the ear, not because of the taste, but because of the shape it is known for. The dough is traditionally seasoned with cardamom and cinnamon is added before baking. For an additional pinch of christmas and colour, I also tossed in some saffron.

P.s It seems the spirit is coming slowly..!

Sahrami Korvapuustit - Saffron Ear Slapps
(Finnish cinnamon buns with saffron) makes 16

500 ml milk
50 g fresh yeast
1-2 teaspoons salt
2 dl sugar
1 tablespoon cardamom
1 tablespoon saffron
1 egg
14 dl flour
100 g butter or margarine

50-100 g butter or margarine
firmly packed brown sugar (fariinisokeri)

Mix the yeast into the luke warm milk. Add the sugar, salt, cardamom saffron and egg and stir well. Start adding the flour stirring the whole time. Continue kneading with your hand until you have a firm dough that is not too sticky but also not too dry. Let it stand in a warm place for an hour.

Fold the dough o n a working table a few times to get the air out. Divide it then in half and roll the other half to a 50x50 cm sheet. Spread half of the butter and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Then make a long roll out of it and cut into eight pieces. Set the pieces on a baking sheet and press each one in the middle with your thumb so that they get 'ears'. Smear with egg and bake in 225 °C for ten minutes. I like to live them just a little bit raw from the very middle.
Enjoy fresh from the oven!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

too much sunshine..?!

Not long ago declaired I how winter time had begun for me and how from now on it will be all about christmas and all that. I was wrong. Somehow I still have an eye and appetite for autumny things although I keep telling myself 'come on, girl! Get over it! It's already December!' Could it be because of all the sunshine here in Freiburg? Is it too much for someone who is used to 27 hours of light during December. Yes, 27. And those hours don't yet promise sunshine from a clear blue sky, it just promises that you are able to see where you are going without a flashlight. Okay, that was exaggerated... Finland is not one big forest, although we do have a few trees and lakes.
Back to food. I had some brussels sprouts which I wanted to turn into something edible. I'd had a picture in my head of a brussels sprout quiche and to add a touch of christmas, I through in some cumin seeds as well as nutmeg. Good old orange found it's way to the pre-christmas party too and they all came along very well together!
What's different about this quiche is that it's made with a yeast dough. That means it's lighter and less buttery as the usual one. And for the filling: if you dont't find quark, replace it with 200 ml cream and leave out the milk.

Brussels Sprout Quiche

200 g spelt flour (or normal)
1 teaspoon sugar
10 g fresh yeast
125 ml water

700 g brussels sprouts
olive oil
50 ml water

2 eggs
150 g quark (curd cheese)
75 ml milk
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon orange zest
hint of ground nutmeg
pepper and salt

Mix the yeast, sugar and 125 ml of luke warm water. Add the flour and 1/2 tablespoon salt and knead into an even dough. Set aside for 30 minutes and cover it with a towel. Set oven to 175 °C.
Meanwhile cleanse the brussels sprouts and cut in half. Heat the oil in a pan and cook them first for two minutes and then add water. Add some salt and braise for 5 minutes.
Mix together the eggs, quark, milk and spices.
Butter a quiche form and roll the dough on the bottom and on the sides. Pour the quark mixture on the bottom and set the brussels sprouts on top, round side up.
Bake for 45 minutes and let it stand for 10 minutes before cutting into pieces.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

there's something about savoy cabbage

My passion for savoy cabbage continues and got to a whole new level with this gratin adapted from Orangette. It warmed both my heart and apartment on a chilly day, as it needed quite some time in the oven. Great with meat or simply with a crispy piece of bread.

Savoy Cabbage Gratin

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 savoy cabbage cut into small shreds
400 ml (1 3/4 cups) chicken or vegetable stock (preferably a good quality one)
1 ripe Saint Marcellin cheese (3 oz)

Preheat oven to 180 °C (350 F) and butter a large gratin dish.
Melt the butter in a big pan and add the cabbage and some salt. Cook stirring for about 10 minutes until it gets soft and starts getting some colour.
Add the stock and bring to simmer. Keep on cooking for two minutes and pour the whole thing then to the oven dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the oven for 45 minutes.
Remove the foil and continue to bake for 20 minutes.
Then cut the cheese into pieces and spread on top. Set oven temperature to 190 °C (375 F) and bake for another 10 minutes, until cheese is melted.
Let it stand for a few minutes before serving. Guten Appetit!


Monday, December 1, 2008


There is a candy query going around the finnish food blogging world. To me this came from the lovely Bella Vanilla blog and I got a good reason to by candy...

Salty Fishes and Chewy Blueberry Balls...

... Mini Fruit Buddhas

And of course Milka Chocolate! (In Finland it would be Fazer.)

And I am challenging...


-Unelias Kokki


The rules are:

1. Pick at least five different sorts of candy - candy that you would normally also buy.
2. Take pictures of them and publish them on your blog.
3. Then challenge at least 3 other blogs to do the same and put a link on their blog. You can try to guess what kind of candy they are into!
4. You can also say a few words about the candy you've chosen.

Tässä meemin säännöt:
1. Valitse vähintään viisi irtokarkkilaatua, jotka valitsisit oikeastikin karkkipussiisi.
2. Ota karkeista joko itse kuvat tai nappaa ne netistä ja julkaise ne blogissasi.
3. Tämän jälkeen haasta vähintään kolme ihmistä tekemään tämä meemi, ja linkkaa heidän blogeihinsa. Voit haastaa myös useamman! Koita arvata, mistä nameista he tykkäävät.
4. Halutessasi voit vielä selvittää sanallisesti valintojasi…