Saturday, November 4, 2017

Karelian Pasties with Egg Butter

With Aiti
My grandmother (step-grandmother, technically) is from Finland. She is that quintessential grandma who bakes and sings you lullabies, while also being an Olympic-level cross-country skier. I grew up eating pulla every Easter and piirakkas (karelian pasties) when we went to visit. When the two of us took a trip to Finland in 2006, we ate piirakkas every morning for breakfast. This is the first time I have made them myself, and I have no idea why. They are delicious. Aiti, this one is for you.
Aiti in Helsinki, Finland
Rice Pudding
2 C water
1 C uncooked white rice
2 C milk
salt to taste

Combine rice and water in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, or until water is absorbed. Stir in milk, cover, and cook until milk is absorbed by the rice, about 20 minutes. Season with salt to taste.

Rye Crust
1 C water
2 C rye flour
2 t salt
1 C all-purpose flour (as needed)
3 T butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (220 degrees C). In a medium bowl, stir together the salt and rye flour. Stir in water. Mix in all-purpose flour 1/4 cup at a time until dough is just past the sticky stage. Divide the dough into 16 equal portions.

On a lightly floured surface, roll each piece of dough out into a thin circle 6 inches in diameter. The dough should be as thin as possible (seriously, you'll think it's too thin, but you'll be wrong). Place about 3 tablespoons of the rice mixture in the center of each circle. Spread the mixture out to within 1 inch of the edges. Fold the edges of the dough upward, and crimp the edges so as to allow the pastries to hold their shape. Pinch the sides at each end to form a little boat. Place pastries about 3 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet, and brush the tops with butter.

Bake for 10 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the dough is firm, and the rice porridge is slightly browned on the top. Serve warm, topped with egg butter.

Egg Butter
6 hardboiled eggs
4 T butter
salt to taste

Chop eggs and mix with melted butter. Essentially just buttery egg salad.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

For Saint Patrick's Day - Irish Soda Bread!

3 C flour
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp butter, softened
1 C raisins (optional)
1 Egg
2 C buttermilk

Preheat oven to 325°F, grease bread pan.

Combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and soda in a bowl, mix well. Work in butter. Add raisins if desired.

In measuring cup, beat egg. Add enough buttermilk to equal 2 C (this will be about 1 3/4 C buttermilk, depending on the size of the egg), mix well.

Add milk mixture to dry ingredients, mix well. Kneading the dough is not necessary.

Bake in greased bread pan for 1 hour. Let stand for 5 minutes, then remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

Best served warm with LOTS of butter :)