Hello everyone! The Christmas is here almost, only three nights until Santa Claus is coming to town. Today we had snow storm in the mountain area and we got near 30 cm more snow on the ground. The amount of snow we have, is pretty impressive. If you want white Christmas, come to Canada. We might have dark and cold winter in Finland, but i have never seen this much snow in December.
Last Saturday we hit the road with Kalle, Emelie, Jamie and Kikka, and went for Christmas shopping to downtown Montreal. The temperature was -26 Celsius degrees and in Montreal it was also windy, and that’s not good combination. On the way we stopped at IKEA and bought lots of Scandinavian food. I even got myself couple Kopparberg ciders. Well it’s non-alcoholic, but it tastes like the “real” stuff and you can always add some vodka. It was pretty impressive what they had there, and for some reason the shop was full of Swedish people buying Kalle’s Caviar, and they were little bit unhappy after losing to Finland in Ice Hockey.
Kalle and Emelie had found couple weeks earlier this store in Montreal, that sells everything from Scandinavia and they had ordered us Christmas Ham (Joulukinkku). I have to warn you, that after being near four months away from your home country, this kind of store might get you nuts. Before we got there, i though i got almost everything i need from IKEA, but boy was i wrong…
On the photo on right, you can see what i got from IKEA. There is some blueberry soup (mustikkakeittoa), crisp bread (näkkileipää), Swedish cider Kopparberg (siideriä), Kalles Caviar (Kallen mätitahnaa), glogg (glögiä), cow berry jelly (puolukkahilloa), Swedish meatballs (jauhelihapullia) and rösti. We eat the same stuff in Finland, so it was nice to find them in IKEA.
Like i was telling before, after IKEA we left to Boucherie Atlantique. The store is located in Montreal at 5060 Cote des Neiges in corner at Queen Mary. When i got inside the store, first thing i saw was salmiak candy (salmiakkia) on my left side, and after surviving the first shock, i noticed that they had all the Finnish candy you can wish. The store is full of stuff from Scandinavia, Europe and they also had stuff from Asia. There was huge meat counter, where you could get everything you wanted, even the Christmas Ham (joulukinkku)! But if you want one, remember to make order well before the Christmas.
Like every Finnish people know, when you eat Christmas Ham, you have to have mustard. So, what did they have in the store, well of course Finnish mustard, Turun sinappia. After discovering the mustard, i found Finnish coffee! They had almost everything you could wish to have from back home.
The store owner who is German told Kalle, that the reason for having all the Finnish stuff, is that their importer is Finnish. The name of the import company bringing all the Scandinavian stuff is Viking Foods & Imports Inc. They are located in Toronto, so i bet there is a place in Toronto too, where you can get all the Finnish stuff you want.
I mostly bought Finnish candy from the store, and of course i took Turun sinappia (mustard). Jamie bought hapankorppua. Now that i found the place, there isn’t anymore need for people to send me Finnish candy’s! I can go to a store and buy my own!
We are now pretty much ready for the Scandinavian Christmas dinner on Wednesday. I got two days of work left, and on Tuesday it’s time to start to prepare the food for Christmas. Kikka did bring us some brown bread (ruisleipää) and bags to smoke fish (savustuspusseja).
We are going to start the Christmas on 24th with Christmas porridge. It’s really good. And here is recipe for it.
“CHRISTMAS RICE PORRIDGE
Traditional Finnish Christmas dish.
300 ml water
150 ml short grain rice
700 ml whole milk
Bring water to the boil in the saucepan. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until water is wholly absorbed in it. Add the milk and bring the mixture to the boil again, stirring frequently.
Lower the heat to minimum, cover the pan with lid and simmer for about 40 to 60 minutes, or until the rice and milk have thickened into a soft-textured, velvety smooth porridge. Stir every now and then to prevent the porridge from burning on the bottom or forming a skin on the surface. Season with a little salt, sugar and a pat of butter.”
The recipe is copy pasted from the site of M. Paavonkallio. The site has lots of good Nordic recipes.