Friday, 27 February 2015

Finnish Rye Bun Meets Mediterranean Flavors

I hate to throw away perfectly good ingredients. I hate wasting in all forms. Nowadays people waste a lot - we did (and probably still do) too even though we try to live in a ecological way.

I hate to see when people don't use all the parts of the animals or waste perfectly good food simply because they don't want to eat the same food for the next two or three days. Ingredients needs to be respected and treated with love and care.

In the last few weeks we have started to use banana peels and potato peels. So far all the potato peels have been used but I must admit that I had to throw away about 5 banana peels since I simply did not have time to prepare anything out of them. But I am getting better in this and maybe in the future I will create a banana peel recipe that is easier and healthier to use than cakes and biscuits I have created so far.

So after having all these thoughts I created a rye bread recipe with Mediterranean tastes and here comes the twist.... Potato peels. Oven baked, spiced potato peels. Delicious just like that but in the bread dough they are magnificent.  You simply have to try this!

For potato peels:
400 grams (14.110oz)  potato peels
50 grams (1.7637oz)olive oil
1 tsp rosemary
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp basil
2 tsp oregano
4-5 garlic gloves

(black pepper)

1. Let's prepare those potato peels first. wash and dry the potato peels with a towel.
2. Mix oil and spices on the bowl. Add potato peels and mix well.
3. Bake in 200 grams at a time in 225 °C  (440°F) for about 10-12 minutes or so.

For the bread dough:
300 grams (10.582oz) sourdough starter
All of the baked potato peels 
600 (1.3228 lb) grams water
900-1000 grams (1.9842 lb - 2.2046 lb) rye flour

1. Mix the sourdough starter, oven baked potato peels and salt.
2. Add the flour and knead.
3. Take small pieces of the dough  (appr. 100 grams/ 3.5274 oz) in your hands and make it a ball and then flatten it. Do it as long as you have used all  the dough.
4. Let the buns leaven in a warm place (I have done this many times in the oven which I heated as little as possible. That way the buns leaven faster)
5. When ready, bake in the 225 °C  (440°F)  for about 30 minutes or so.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Cinnamon Spelt Cookies

I made these cookies in December when I wanted to have s scent of cinnamon in the house. The yard did not have white snow on it but there was some frost on rocks and moss. The air was nippy and your cheeks would become wonderfully red after a walk in the silent forest. walking in the forest is one my favorite things to do. It is just you and the wind and the trees - you can really relax and hear your own thoughts. It's magical.

These cookies ended up being loved by the whole family and what's best they were really simply and quick to make and the scent of cinnamon prepared the  Christmas spirit.

250  (8.8185 oz) grams butter
200  (0.44092 lb) grams sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla sugar
2-3 tsp baking powder
350  (0.77162 lb)  grams Spelt flour

sugar and cinnamon for covering the cookies

1. Mix soft butter and sugar to tunr it into a soft foam.
2. Add the eggs
3. Mix the dry ingredients and and add them to the butter/sugar mix.
4. make about 30 round balls in your hands.
5. Put some cinnamon-sugar mix in to a small bowl and put the balls in it one by one and cover them with the sugar-cinnamon mix. Put the cookies on the papered baking tray.
6. Put the cookies into fridge for about 20 minutes and bake them in  the center of the oven for about 12-14 minutes in 200 °C (400°F).

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Rye Bread with Lingonberry Jam

It is no longer autumn in Finland. Two days a go we got white fluffy flakes which covered the land and turned the whole world white. However, I know, it won't last yet. It will melt away here in southern Finland. Now we just need to wait and see will we get a white Christmas. Hopefully we do. In a mean while we can enjoy these colorful autumn photos of lingonberry bread.

Lingonberries and rye are one of those match made in heaven ingredients. this one of the variations I have made since no one (not even Finns) want to eat same bread day after day. Still healthy, especially if you make your own lingonberry jam since then you can control how much sugar you add in to it and you can even choose to use better sugar option than the common white sugar.

Lingonberries grow even in our yard. They are wonderful addition to many dishes like smashed potatoes and (now close your eyes, if you believe in Santa) sautéed reindeer but also equally delicious with liver casserole which is one of my favourite ones. Lingonberries are smashed and  spiced with sugar when used with these dishes. if you ever have a change to try them - go for it! They are delicious!

I remember that my grandmother who lived in Rovaniemi, always made sautéed reindeer (poronkäristys) when we visited there. She served it often with boiled potatoes and that version was great too but I simply love smashed potatoes with milk, butter and little sugar so you can guess which option I like the best. And I must say that my mom makes the greatest smashed potatoes I have ever eaten. Well, enough about the lingonberries and other dishes. Back to the lingonberry bread.

The recipe goes like this:

350-400 grams (12.346-14.110 oz) sourdough starter
300 grams (10.582 oz)  lingonberry jam
500 grams (1.1023 lb) water
1200 grams (2.6455 lb)  ryeflour

1. Mix the strater, water and salt.
2. Add lingonberry jam. Mix well.
3. Add rye flour.
4.Knead on the baking board, add flours when needed.
5. Bake into two breads
6. Leaven them under a baking cloth for about 6-8 hours or so. Even over night works weel at my house.
7. Then bake them in the 250 °C (480°F) for about 15 minutes and then lower the temperature to 200 °C (400°F) and bake them 60 to 75 minutes more or until they are done.

Monday, 29 September 2014

Finnish Sourdough Rye Bread with Malted Rye Flour

 My family wanted to have a different sort of rye bread after a while. I had these malted rye flours in my pantry and I decided to add some of them into the dough in order to get a little richer and slighter sweeter taste. It completely changes the taste of the sourdough rye bread.

I like malted flours. You can do so many things with them and special Easter time treat called mämmi is made by using malted rye flours. It is delicious even though it does look like something you can find in baby's diapers. Still, if you ever have a chance to taste mämmi I say go for it! It's really worth it.

This bread was so good that my family ate half of the bread I had baked before I could take the photos. I had other two  breads too but I had already frozen them so  I was left with this little piece to deal with. Luckily  there was still something left so that I did not need to shoot just  the crumbs.  :)

550-600 grams (1.2125 - 1.3228 lb) sourdough starter
appr.  1100 grams (2.4251 lb) water
1100-1200 grams (2.4251 - 2.6455 lb)  rye flour
800 grams (1.7637 lb) malt flour (I used malted rye flour)

1. Mix the sourdough started, lukewarm water, salt and malted flours. Mix.
2. Add almost all of the rye flour and start kneading. Add more flours if needed. Bake 3 breads.
3. Let the bread leaven in a warm place, under a baking towel for about 6-9 hours (depends on the room temperature)
4. Then bake them in the 250 °C (480°F) for about 15 minutes and then lower the temperature to 200 °C (400°F) and bake them 60 to 75 minutes more.

Friday, 19 September 2014

Quick and Easy Apple Pie

At first it seemed that we would have totally appleless autumn. How wrong we were! Now I have received  several big boxes of apples from my dad and from my mother-in-law. I am very grateful of all the apples but right now I wish I would have no apples left - there are still so many apples to dry in the veggie dryer and there are still so many apples to turn into a jam. And since making jam and drying starts to be a bit boring I decided to make a really quick apple pie.

My pie tin was 25 cm (appr. 9-10 inch)
I measured most of the ingredients in small glass and used that during the whole recipe where I needed the glass.

A glass of eggs (I used four eggs)
A glass of sugar
A glass of all purpose flour
1-2 tsp of baking powder
(100 grams (3.5274 oz) chopped almonds)
appr. 100 grams (3.5274 oz) melted butter

1. Whisk the eggs and the sugar into foam.
2. Add the melted butter (make sure it's not hot) and mix lightly.
3. Mix the all purpose flour and baking powder and add them into the pie batter. (Add the chopped almonds) Mix just as much as you need to get it mixed - no more.
4. Pour the batter into a well greased pie tin.
5. Add the apple jam/pieces on the the pie so that all the pie is covered with them. They will fall on the bottom but that is what it is supposed to do.
6. Bake in the 180 °C (360°F) for about 30-40 minutes (or longer if the apples are really moist or if you want to use more apples in a pie.)  Keep checking the pie.

If you want you can drop the almonds from the recipe. I sometimes use them and sometimes not.

Apple jam I had made earlier today. You can also use store bought jam. My apple jam for pies has big pieces of apples and I spiced the jam with cinnamon and some sugar. I used about 450-500 (1-1.1023 lb) grams of this in my apple pie.

I  used about 1200 grams (2.4251 lb) chopped apples and added appr. 100 grams (3.5274 oz)  sugar, about 100 grams (3.5274 oz) water and 4 tsp cinnamon and let it simmer on the stove as along as it takes for apples to soften and break a little. That depends on the apple variety. So this is not really a jam after all, Maybe it should be called soft and spiced apple pieces. It's good though and not too sweet.

This works well with most jams or fruit pieces. use what ever you have in your kitchen.

Even better this pie is if you serve it with vanilla sauce or ice cream. Nothing beats the classic I guess. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Nutty Raisin Bread

This bread recipe is perfect for our already nutty day! :D

The life here has been more than hectic. I have missed writing my blog and recipes. Now it seems that things calm down a little and maybe I am able to post recipes more often.

This bread was so wonderful to make. After such a long time I was able to do something else than just basic bread. Basic is good too but it becomes boring after a while and you would like to add something extra in it. This time it was nuts and raisins. Breads and nuts go so well together!  Add some raisins or other dried fruits with them - it's well made match in heaven!

This is what I made this time. It was rather large dough since I had lots of sourdough starter which needed to be used. It's good idea to either down size the recipe or maybe you can freeze some of the bread so you will save some time on the following days.

600 grams (1.9842 lb) sourdough starter
1000 grams (2.2046 lb) water
150 grams (5.2911 oz) hazelnuts
250 grams (8.8185 oz)  raisins
3-4 tsp salt (or what ever you prefer)
1800-2000 (3.9683 - 4.4092 lb) grams all-purpose flours
appr. 100 grams (1.7637- 3.5274 oz)  olive oil

1. Add lukewarm water to the sourdough starter.
2. Add chopped nuts and raisins to the dough and let them soak for about 30 minutes so that the raisins get softer.
3. Add some flours and salt. Then almost all the flours
4. Keep kneading and adding flours if needed.
5. Add the olive oil
6. Knead some more (add flours if necessary) and let rest about 30 minutes before kneading a bit more and shaping into breads.
7. Cut the bread in a preferred way and let them rise under a baking cloth about 6 to 8 hours depending on the room temperature.
8. Bake in the 200°C (400°F) for about an hour or so. Knock the bottom of the bread and if you hear the nice "drumming" sounds it's well baked.

Enjoy the days nutty recipe!

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