Lohikeitto – Finnish Salmon Soup

It has become a bit of a tradition that I share a Finnish recipe to celebrate my anniversary. In year one we had cake, year two I shared pancakes and today I invite you for soup. Lohikeitto – Finnish Salmon Soup.

Lohikeitto Finnish Salmon Soup

And let me say this soup is amazing! I am so glad I actually know about it. When we spent our honeymoon at the attic circle I’ve seen this soup everywhere. Unfortunately I felt sick most of the time and fish soup just didn’t sound appealing.

On our last night in Finland we slept in an ice hotel. And there Lohikeitto was served yet again. I decided to give it a try. Been angry with myself for not ordering it earlier ever since. It comes as no surprise that I immediately googled a recipe for this Finnish Salmon Soup.

You can find original recipe easily. I made my own version the other night and really enjoyed it.

You need:

♥ 1 Tbsp Ghee (you can also use regular butter or olive oil)
♥ 1 Finely chopped onion
♥ 1 sweet potatoe
♥ 1.25 litres vegetables broth (alternatively you may use fish stock)
♥ 1/2 kg fresh cubed salmon fillet
♥ 250 ml cream (use milk for a thinner soup)
♥ 1 handful finely chopped baby spinach
♥ 5 pieces Bay Leaf
♥ 5 grains of allspice
♥ 5 grains of junipers
♥ dash of sea salt
♥ dash of pepper

yummy Lohikeitto finnish salmon soup

Lets get cooking

  1. Chop onions and add to large saucepan, simmer in the ghee over medium heat until soft
  2. Cut the potato roughly into 1-inch cubes and add to onions, let simmer a bit.
  3. Add enough water to just cover the potatoes. Add allspice, junipers and bayleaf. Turn up the heat to high, cover the saucepan with a lid, bring to a boil and cook the potatoes until almost soft
  4. Add the vegetable broth.
  5. Cube the salmon and add to the pot. Cook until it is mostly opaque (maybe 5 minutes). Do not stir the soup so as not to break up the salmon – I did as I didn’t care much though.
  6. Add cream and make sure it does not cook anymore. ( I hardly ever manage that part. The cream will clot. It doesn’t matter for the taste but it just doesn’t look too good.)
  7. Take off the heat and stir in chopped spinach.
  8. Serve hot and enjoy.

Finnish Salmon Soup Lohikeitto

So can you image coming back home after a long day outdoors with freezing numb cheeks? This soup is a total game changer than. Its warm, it’s reach, it’s filling.

Let me know how you liked it.

Happy Soup Sunday,

Tobia

Snowy Winter Walk

Every one of you who has read more than one post here knows I am winter crazy.

So it should not surprise that I am beyond excited when I see the tiniest snowflake.

fluffy plant

A couple weekends ago I woke up and snowflakes were dancing in the air. After having a quick coffee I grabbed my camera and went to the park.

snowy stair patternMy mission: catching the untampered winter wonderland. Unfortunately I was not the only one with this idea. The park was filled with morning joggers, dog walkers and excited kids sledding down every available rise in the ground.

greenery and blueI craved for some quietness and alone time but obviously that wasn’t going to happen… the perks of living in a city.

Snowy BenchAnyhow I went some lonelier pathes, and came a across a few birds feeding on seeds someone had left.

Feeding Sparrows in SnowI am usually not so much into birds and animals but I found it interesting and challenging to try to snap a good picture. It was tough. These are my best shots.

feeding great tit in snow

After two hours or so the park became even busier, my stomach louder and my feet colder so I headed back home for breakfast.

greenery

I want to repeat my snow walk in the park on a weekday hoping for more solitude. So please snow, come and delight us again.

Have you taken a snowy winter walk? What’s your favorite place to go?

Happy snow wandering

Tobia

Hello Fall {Schreibzeit #9}

So, apparently fall is here. The other morning I wrote my bike to work and it was cold. Not one of those sudden shivers more a cold that crept into your layers of clothes.

mushroom love in fall

I like fall. I like when the air feels fresher to breath. I like all the funny fruit things on trees. I like the smell of rotting leaves and mossy grounds. I love picking mushrooms and hardly ever get to do it. (Note to self: Maybe I should make a fall list?!) I love eating plum streusel cake and apple pies. When I was growing up I even sometimes enjoyed raking leaves in my grandparents backyard. Then you could also watch the squirrels hiding the walnuts and when dusk came the hedgehogs took a walk. And my dad would cut trees and we would build a fire and roast potatoes for dinner. Sometimes I miss those happy and carefree times.

squirrel love in fall

Now fall is all about “oh, soon it’s Christmas”, what do I need to get done, what didn’t I do during summer, why does time fly…

I find it sad that I do not appreciate the seasons properly. I run through life and hardly look left and right. But when I do it’s most likely a happy moment right there.

So for this fall I will walk around with eyes open. Observe the leaves changing color, discover a sparkling spider web, smell mossy grounds, take a walk and hopeful pick some mushrooms.

I will enjoy fall because it’s the pre-season to my favorite one: winter.

All seasons are dear to me. I mean imagine living in a area where there are no seasons? Where temperatures are mostly the same and it’s either raining or hurricane season or no other. I love watching the change. Do you? Or do you prefer hot temperatures throughout?

I will add this piece to Bines Schreibzeit as it has been a while. And I will grab a cuppa tea and read the other fall stories.
Happy fall y’all

Tobia

Cucumber Potato Salad :: Perfect for Summer

Hey lovelies!

wow this salad blew me away. Seriously! And I came up with it in a whim. On a hot hot summer day. One of those days where you just don’t feel like eating but than late afternoon you realized you are getting really hungry. Well this is for you.

Cucumber Potato Salad

A wonderful yummy cold cucumber potato salad!

What you need:

♥ 1 kg potatos
♥ 1 cucumber
♥ 200 g sour cream
♥ scallion
♥ salt & pepper

1. Wash, clean, cube your potatoes and then boil them in salted water. When they started to boil I added a bit of instant vegetable stock for seasoning. Let potatoes cool down.

2. Peel cucumber and cube it. Thinly slice the scallion.

3. Mix potatoes and cucumber. Add sour cream and mix well. Add scallion, salt and pepper to taste.

4. Let sit in the refrigerator for a while so the flavors can develop.

5. Enjoy this yummy salad.

Cold Summer Cucumber Potato Salad

I bet this would be a wonderful alternative zo the regular BBQ salads and I imagine it would go great with grilled fish or chicken.

What’s your favorite summer salad?

Happy cooking,

Tobia

Honeymoon at the Arctic Circle with huskies and reindeers {winter wedding special}

Welcome back! Today I take you along our honeymoon. I know I am nice. So get some hot beverage, put on some socks because we are going to the Arctic Circle!honeymoon at arctic circle

When we were planning our wedding we realized a week prior to the big day we didn’t have any idea what to do after. Usually people go on a honeymoon. We always wanted to do lodge hopping in Canada for our honeymoon but that was just out of the picture financially. So we figured a few days somewhere to relax. But we couldn’t decided and time past…
Good thing a text came in telling us to save ten days after our wedding. So end of looking and off to a surprise.

And a surprise it was. Due to the lack of snow at our winter wedding my parents figured: send them where the snow is.

downtown levi

Yes we were sent to the most nordic town in Finland with huskies, reindeers, ice hotels and winter wonderland. But let’s go one day at a time.

Arriving in our hotel, discovering our room with a build-in sauna, a funny metal box – later figuring out it’s a heated closet to dry your stuff, reindeers grasing in front of our window. We were in honeymoon heaven. We took a short walk to get a lay of the land and fed the reindeers at the hotel.

walk around levi finlandThen we had dinner and went to bed because next morning was already scheduled.

Breakfast was strange. I let a picture speak because I really can’t describe:

finnish breakfast

After we got in our skiing gear and went to do our introduction to snow shoeing and snowmobiling. Later that day we just wandered the town and enjoyed the snow and came across a reindeer – in the middle of town! We also hit the tourist info and booked us a reindeer sledge ride and a husky sledge driving class.

Our day with the huskies

First thing to know: I am scared of dogs! Mr. ♥ loves huskies and wants one. So going on a husky farm took a lot of willpower but I am glad I did. We went to Huskysafari Levi. First we got a little introduction to sledge riding – like never step of the sledge, Huskies will run no matter what, to go slower you push the break, they eat snow to cool of, Huskies can actually die from over-heating…
Once we knew all this we got the dogs ready and my were they ready. Got a few pics:

jumping huskies

First it was my turn to stir the sledge and even though it was nice to try I was totally worn out (I was still really sick and the antibiotics took a toll on me too). So I was glad when we switched and I was able to enjoy the country side being chauffeured through by hubby. Again dusk was setting in early so pictures are a bit dark but that’s just the way it is up there.

landscape husky ride

When being back in the camp we had hot cranberry juice, coffee and traditional sausage.

husky

Our day with the reindeers

Our day at Wolverine Fell Wilderness and Nature started by getting a taxi and then being quite anxious if we will ever arrive. Seriously there was no way to drive on, all was white, the driver wasn’t quite sure where to go. Than we passed a ensemble of three cottages and a women (trying) to push a stroller through the snow. Soon after we arrived at the gate and so did the lady. She was our tour guide Petra and brought her 3 month old with her. Her husband was busy feeding reindeers and preparing the sledge. And we were the only ones. It was a wonderful quite and very informative afternoon we spend with them. As she kept mentioning reindeers are semi wild animals. You can not train them like horses. They “work” for you because you provide food. They are herd animals and it might happen that they decide to go another way – and all animals will follow. We went for a 1 mile sledge ride which took quite a while. The surroundings were amazing. Snowy trees, snow sunken fences and a reindeers butt.

reindeer butt

We stopped at a little cabin at Levi lake were we had hot cranberry juice and coffee.

panorama levi lakeWe heard stories about crossing the frozen lake and breaking through. We looked at animal pictures and listened to hunters stories. And throughout the time we felt like visiting friends, listening about their every day life struggles and joys.

our sledge reindeer

And one of their reindeers (the white one) was actually a star in a Christmas movie – unfortunately I forgot which one. So if you are ever in Kitillä you need to take a ride with them.

Our day at the glass igloo

Our last two days in Lapland we didn’t spent in our sauna hotel. We went to the glass igloos for one night.

inside glass iglooHonestly I think this was our highlight. Unfortunately due to the warm weather (only -3-6° C instead of -30° C that would have been normal around this time of year) it was very cloudy which turned the landscape in a winter wonderland but also covered up all the aurora borealis we were gonna watch.
But the snowy trees were worth the trip. Just have a look:

snowy trees

Since there wasn’t anything to do up there we went to the traditional finish hut and just hang out by the fire before we headed to our igloo and heated up dinner which you have to bring yourself.

finnish hutWe then spend the night reading and looking out of the window. Being entertained by crazy Asians running around in hello kitty pj’s and big cooking pots…
Next morning we ate breakfast that was in the fridge.

breakfast at glass igloo

Then we headed out for another photo tour in daylight and before the bus picked us up.

snowy landscape at glass iglooWe spend the day wandering the town, taking a cable car up to the mountains and enjoying the view until our trip to the next hotel.

Our day in a ice hotel

Now this was something we really looked forward too but were also a bit scared of. The brochure mentioned “cozy -5 degree”. When we drove to the ice hotel with our taxi we were a bit surprised because everything was dark. After going back and forth and looking into some windows a nice lady opened saying they were waiting for us and saying we would be their only guests tonight. What that really meant took us a while to set in… First she wanted to serve us dinner unfortunately we ate because we figured there is nothing up there. So she took us on a tour through the ice hotel. The hotel is build every year by cutting ice cubes out of the river and shooting snow on a big air dome which is later removed. Art students come in and carve pictures and figures and decorate.

ice hotelThe hotel has a little chapel (were you can also get married), an ice bar (mainly for groups and events) and 15 rooms incl. one suite with a heatable water bed – we didn’t have that room…

ice hotel chapel
We went back to accompanying restaurant and invited our waitress to have a drink with us. So we spend the time getting to know each other, exchanging life stories and cultural differences learning words in each other’s language and enjoying time together until it was time to get to bed.

We were provided with a sleeping bag, fleece inlays and lots of reindeer furs. We bought matching cross country skiing hats to not freeze our brains of and then off we went into the glacier. Before undressing and getting ready for bed we took a photo and video tour of the hotel, looked into every corner and behind every reindeer hide hanging somewhere. It was dead silent, chilly and a weirded atmosphere. Imagine sitting under a glacier or having a tiny cave in an avalanche. It didn’t help much that Rittaa (our waitress/hotel lady) mentioned that the dome steadily sags and that Mr. ♥ vividly described how a murder with lots of blood splatter would look like…

ice hotel sleeping

Anyway once we got into a our sleeping bags and finding somewhat comfort on the ice cube that was our bed it was great. I didn’t freeze at all, it was a bit chilly but it felt great. Breathing was a whole new experience in this crisp air and I felt totally healthy waking up.

Unfortunately waking up also brought our departure day. Getting to the airport was fun. Exactly three flights were managed that day – 2 arrival and one departure.

airport kitilläAnd while we very hanging around the airport we realized one not thing: the Fins are bad ass. The runway was covered in snow and ice… And yes it was fully operating.

kittalä airport with plane

Well so much for our little adventure. So what you think honeymoon in the Caribbean or at the Arctic Circle?!

For all the ones interested in going to Lapland here are a few hard facts

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