December 29, 2012













I have two sisters and two brothers and all of us spent Christmas together at our parents this year. 15 people and a dog. (We might be too many for one house in some years.) I am very happy about this bunch.



December 24, 2012







I had Eva over a week ago and we had such good times, much of them over breakfasts. On Sunday we went to Goodpie Bakery's Galleria Keidas (Fleminginkatu 7), it was my first time, and I have to say I was very impressed. A beautiful place, gorgeous details, yummy side dishes you get to choose from for your breakfast buffet and perfect old-time Christmas carols. And our deep conversations. Happy days.

On Thursday my holiday started off perfectly. After work I stopped to listen to a string quartet in a metro tunnel; they played Bach so beautifully (and I was so happy and emotional over the holiday just starting) that I stood there tears streaming down my face. The day was topped off by Home alone at a friend's place. Happy days!





On Friday we had pizza at Krisse's new place where she just started renovations.



Now have a blessed, peaceful, beautiful Christmas everyone. Eat well, play your
favorite songs and cherish the good times with your nearest and your dearest.

December 13, 2012

Nora has an online christmas calendar for Otto who's in Cairo at the moment. (Nora and Otto are such sweethearts, I just love spending time with them.) I promised to do day 13 and here's what came out of it.

video
 
(The first version of this short film was shot by Helena in Sis.deli after breakfast, with coffee cups and people on the background. I shot this second one when I came home because the light on the windowsill was so good.)

December 8, 2012



First Aid Kit's concert last night, oh wow. A beautiful, strong, inspiring experience that I will remember for a very long time (Simon&Garfunkel's America as encore!) I was so completely blown away by Klara's singing.

(The photo is from 2005; I was an au pair in England for the summer. Here we're on the backseat with Amber and Ebony heading to a funfair. This photo is one of my all-time favorites.)

December 6, 2012



Here's fudge number one in my quest for the perfect fudge recipe (that makes them taste like Marks and Spencer's Buttery Fudge a friend of mine brought from London last winter).


BUTTERY FUDGE


200ml raw sugar (mascobado)
300ml light cane sugar
75ml water
25ml golden syrup
60g butter
1 can condensed milk


Put sugar and water into a large heavy saucepan. Stir over low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add butter and syrup and stil until the butter has melted. Add condensed milk and stir until it comes to the boil. Boil very slowly on low heat, stirring every minute or two, until soft ball stage (the mixture will darken to a deep caramel colour and will start to form sugary crystals on the sides, sounding like sand when you scrape it).

Remove from the stove and beat the fudge with a wooden spoon for 5-10 minutes until it starts to thicken. Pour into a 20x20 pan lined with a baking paper and leave to cool. Cut into squares when cold.

I beat mine for only 5 minutes and suspect that I stopped a little too early with the boiling; my fudge didn't quite form sugary crystals on the sides but since it had been boiling for quite some time already I was afraid of burning it. The fudge tasted really good but the texture was not what I was after; mine was soft and velvety but I want a darker taste and a sandier texture. I think I'll have a new go on this recipe and bravely let it boil longer and beat it for another 5 minutes and see if it gives me the Marks and Spencer's texture!

December 5, 2012



I love the calm of winter and the sound of snow crunching under your feet. I love planning and making and getting christmas presents. I love breakfast. And Jamie Oliver.

December 1, 2012







I don't care how poor a man is; if he has family, he's rich.
(Dan Wilcox and Thad Mumford)

November 28, 2012



BANANA BLUEBERRY BREAKFAST MUFFINS

(makes about 8)
(adapted from Donal Skehan)


60g light spelt flour
40g oat flour
100g rolled oats
30g muscovado sugar
0,5 tsp salt
1,5 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
0,5 tsp cardamom
1 egg yolk
125ml milk
1,5 tbsp oil
1 very large or 2 small ripe bananas mashed
1 egg white
130g blueberries


Mix the dry ingredients. Add egg yolk, milk, oil and mashed banana and mix with a spatula. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Fold the egg white gently in to the batter and last add the frozen berries (mix quickly; the blueberries color the batter easily when they start melting). Divide the batter into 8 paper cases on a muffin tray and bake in 200c for about 20 minutes.

I keep coming back to this recipe, these are my favorite breakfast muffins!

November 25, 2012



My niece turned seven on Friday. I remember so much from being seven. The watch I got for my seventh birthday, the smell and the feel of the desk at school, how I was nervous when I didn't want to eat the orange bits in the salad one school lunch and stuffed them in my pocket, my best friend on the same street, watching telly with her and singing along, her mom's cinnamon rolls, forests on the way to school. I've realized later what a tremendous impact that year I went to school and those people that became my friends then (and along the years) had on me and my life. It's intriguing.

November 23, 2012

The postman brought this jewel, What Katie ate, yesterday. It must be the most beautiful, mouth-watering cookbook I own. So much inspiration, ah.



These days I'm loving Endless Ocean by Jonathan David & Melissa Helser, good hot chocolate (need to post the recipe!) and the nearness of Christmas.



Here's my newest darling nine days old. I can't wait to know her name.

November 14, 2012



I love this picture of me by Helena. She took it a while ago when I was over for some beetroot soup at her place. Good times.

November 11, 2012



I love friendship. I love breakfast. I love freshly baked things and invitations. I love long, slow mornings and having to hurry nowhere. I love sharing lives, big and small things.

Kata made me breakfast (really one of the best ways to love me) and among other yummy things she had made these sweet potato nut biscuits (known as Panellets in Catalonia). Very addictive.

November 4, 2012



My brother's babygirl was born on Wednesday and we went to see her yesterday. There's really nothing quite as wondrous as a newborn baby; I could have held her forever and just stare and stare.

Welcome to my heart little darling. I love you lots already.

November 2, 2012





Helena and I have almost a weekly breakfast date these days. This morning it was Brooklyn Café (on Fredrikinkatu 19 in Punavuori), our newest favorite. Their latte good be better but the cinnamon raisin bagels cover over a lot of shortcomings, oh wow. They're just as scrumptious and mouth-watering as the ones I fell in love back in 2009 on my trip to Boston. The place is tiny and cozy and I loved the broad american "Good morning" when coming in from the cold.

Have a good trip to Canada Helena!

October 28, 2012









We had family brunch at Laura's and Jooel's today and the smallest one took three steps!

October 26, 2012



"In every place, all the time some stories happen. Just next to us, though usually we don't pay much attention to that. Places are filled with hundreds of emotions, thoughts, feelings. With joy, moments of carelessness, hope, laughter, sorrow, disappointment, despair. People meet, people part, people pass each other. Our ways are crossing. Are you sure that person you just met, you indeed see for the first time in your life? Maybe you already met, passed each other? Maybe you once touched his coat, felt ger smell? You don't remember this, but places do remember. Buildings, sculptures, trees, trains have been watching people for hundreds of years. How many people sat on this bench? How many kissed for the first time and how many for the last? How many emotions, thoughts, ideas were born here?"

Tanja Turpeinen/Memento Express

(Picture by Timo Hakkarainen, taken from Memento Express' facebook wall)



I went to see a performance tonight directed by a good friend of mine. It took place in an old railway carriage, beautifully and whimsically decorated. There was a perfect amount of drama, nostalgia, surprise, laughter and even tea and biscuits served. I cried through the songs and loved the painted view passing by our window. It was unlike any show I've seen, it was en embracing experience, a journey you took (I actually waited for the train to start moving as they announced it would be leaving) and lived through, remembering places and people. Thanks a million Tanja! I'm so proud of you and I love what pours out from your soul!

If you want to experience something very unique and beautiful, please go see this! (more info here)

This morning it was snowing as I cycled to work! I felt all exuberant (a word I've never used before but now it feels like just the right one) and sang Jingle bells and then had a very good time at work all day though there was a mad amount of laundry from yesterday's shows.

October 22, 2012







Monday morning! I got up early to do laundry and made rice porridge while waiting for the first load. (Boy it tastes comforting.) I also made pumpkin coconut muffins with a recipe from Green Kitchen Stories (for which I bought my first ever pumpkin yesterday! An exciting and very yummy recipe; next time I think I'm leaving the ginger out though and using a little more pumpkin. The hint of orange gives the muffins a really nice taste!) I love my roomie's bedding!

October 21, 2012

I dream of


my own breakfast café
a house with fruit trees in the garden
Africa and flamingos
a man who brings me flowers
days filled with music

October 14, 2012





I don't know many things that beat rye bread warm from the oven. (If you'd like to bake your own, tell me and I'll give you the recipe and the sourdough needed! And thanks a million Caro for mine!) I've also had a craving for mashed potatoes for quite some days and today I finally made some with meatballs. Ah. It's interesting how food has such an ability to comfort, bring back memories and inspire. I have so fallen in love with tastes, cooking, the magic of baking, cookbooks..

The autumn has been exceptionally packed and busy with two premieres and two weddings (Henna&Markus' and my sister's) but now it's all done and I'm back to normal schedule. It actually feels weird and a little empty. I feel I need something happening, something new..

October 6, 2012



The best thing lately, had me smiling for days: I went to my favorite café and was served by the guy who owns the place; we hadn't met in a while. "Where have you been?" he asked.

My sister is getting married today. I'm at home, listening to Diana Krall's Live in Paris, eating banana bread fresh from the oven (I'm mad about this bread, I'll post the recipe sooner or later!) drinking coffee and curling my hair. I am so ready to celebrate!

September 25, 2012



These days I'm loving this little boy, banana bread, Mumfors and Sons' new album, Good Life Coffee, family and Jiri Nikkinen & The Brighton Peers.

September 16, 2012

I went through some stuff I had in my sister's storage (thanks Laura for the laugh!) and found an old card from Henna with a poem that made me cry:


Meidän ei tarvitse kysellä toisiltamme.
Me tiedämme, juommeko kahvin kerman kanssa vai mustana,
syömmekö ituja, tarvitsemmeko vierailulla kaksi tyynyä vuoteeseemme.
Me tiedämme millaisista teatterikappaleista toinen pitää,
mistä kirjoista, millaisesta musiikista.
Tiedämme toistemme lempikukan ja mielihajuveden.
Tiedämme toistemme pikku omituisuudet.
Niinpä tapaamisemme on aina kuin kotiintulo.


Pam Brown

September 12, 2012



I've spent lots of time in the kitchen so far this week; I've made moussaka, rye bread, raw chocolate, italiansalaatti, my first ever american apple pie with Leila's recipe and this (we added sweet potato, a perfect match!) in Nora's kitchen. (For the rest of the week I'll be spending most of my time at work rehearsing One Man, Two Guvnors.)

The fall is here with apples, crocheting, red wine and cozy time indoors. Let's make the best out of it and let's be thankful for what we've got!

September 10, 2012



We've always celebrated birthdays and name days with a cake in the morning and I love that about our family.

September 9, 2012

Summer was made



Summer was made,
With the songs of the birds inside,
With the lungs of the earth pressed
For the wind to hum through fields,
That sound like our summer.

Summer was made,
With the woods we wander through,
With the seas we seal inside,
Along with our waking nights
With your hand, ready for mine,
My heart, braced for this warmth,
Our souls, trapped in these skins
That enjoy these bouts of summer.

Summer was made,
For us to have skies inside of us,
For your hands to slip into mine,
And for the sun to never set on this love.
And so in that, we make all of this summer.


Samu Ainesmaa

September 6, 2012





I love evening performances because then I get to have guests for breakfast.

August 25, 2012

Here's best friends Helmi and Kerttu and some spontaneous excellence at today's birthday party:









August 23, 2012



I have the morning off from work and I'm celebrating it with a long breakfast, listening to Gregory Porter and the rain and dreaming of days when I'll have time to bake bread. (I realized I have an amazing cookbook in the shelf I never really picked up!)

August 4, 2012

So here's my long Berlin post with old and new favorites:




The best coffee in town is in The Barn. I found the place a couple years ago through a blog I read and it has remained my favorite since. This time I tried their fruit and nut bread (big chunks of dates and figs!) and fell head over heels in love with it. I will definitely try making this!




On Auguststrasse we passed this most inviting restaurant. (Must go!)


Coffee in No Fire No Glory was very good and their banana bread even better. Yet I think my second favorite coffee was in DoubleEye near my uncle's place. (One day my uncle, being adventurous, ordered "Super Spezial" from their list of coffees and got a mouth-watering espresso with condensed milk. Yum.)


We had coffee on the patio of Michelberger Hotel and what a pity it is I never need a place to stay in Berlin! It was the most amazing hotel I've seen (with old suitcases and cuckoo clocks in the lobby to begin with), oh wow.




Petri is the master of karelian pies (and of all cooking) and we all love to eat them so we try to make them every time I'm there.


(Me and Mariia accidentally bought exactly the same glasses a while ago.)




The breakfast menu of Factory Girl looked scrumptious; we had coffee and Magnolia Bakery inspired banana pudding (in this style).


I found blackberries.


Breakfast in Ungeheuer was alright. (I think we should've tried their homemade müsli.) The place was charming!


Mondo Ruoka&Matka magazine told us the best kebab in town is Mustafa's gemüse kebap on Mehringdamm 32. They were right.


On Sunday morning it rained so much that for the first time I missed the Mauerpark fleemarket. However Tanja and Martina got us to join them for the smaller fleemarkets in Friedrichshain and I ended up finding the jeans jacket I'd been wanting AND bumping into Sandra whose blog I've been reading for some years already and whom I've actually been hoping to bump into when in Berlin! It was lovely and absurd meeting her and her boyfriend (absurd because I know so much about her yet she had no idea who I was). It was Sandra in whose blog I found The Barn back then!






Danke schön Berlin. You were everything I wished for. (And thank you Juha, Pete and Mariia for all the delicacies and the drama.)

This weekend I spend most of my time in the kitchen cooking various meals (and just enjoying time at home) because for the coming weeks I'll be spending more time at the theater than at home; the rehearsals for Fiddler on the Roof start on Monday and will keep me perfectly busy till the end of August. I hope to find the time to post a little something here but please bear with me if I won't! Have a beautiful and inspiring August everyone!