Christmas this year was awesome. Panu and I (and friends Mags and Kirk) travelled out to Harefield (about an hour away from London) to spend the weekend with Mel and Cam, and because they live on a farm (like for realz, with horses and stuff) and it’s no where near the heat of London, snow still covered the grounds and amplified by the fact that I got to spend my weekend with some of my favourite people, everything was utterly magical.

We didn’t really get up to much all weekend. All we did was eat, starting with roast chicken and potatoes and way too much cauliflower bake on Christmas Eve, followed by toasting marshmallows in the open fire. Over the course of the night, I perfected the art of the toast and became Chief Marshmallow Toaster. Obviously, this is an achievement I am proud of.

On Christmas day itself, we woke up to Mags making mini blueberry pancakes.

There are some things in life I will never complain about. One of them is waking up to a cooked breakfast. Right after she cooked breakfast, Mags started preparing lunch, which was going to be lasagne. YUM LASAGNE. Another thing I never complain about.

Mag’s lasagne was so delicious, made with eggplant, zucchini and even left over cauliflower bake and luscious béchamel sauce. We gorged ourselves, retired into the den (with a roaring fire), put on a movie and I promptly fell asleep 🙂

Panu and I were assigned dinner duty and we’d planned a traditional Finnish meal. We kicked the meal off with herring & pickle and smoked salmon, sour cream & dill, both served on Finn crisps.

For the main, as with any traditional Finnish Christmas meal, we served up ham (honey glazed, although not sure if that’s traditional but it tasted good)…

… along with three Finnish “casseroles” (more like bakes) – potato, swede and liver – which we picked up at the Finnish Christmas Fair

… and beetroot salad

… and OMG I forgot to take a photos of the karelian pasties! There were also karelian pasties, which we had with egg butter, a concoction that is basically egg and butter and cottage cheese. BEST THING EVER.

We also had Glöggi, a Scandinavian mulled wine, served with raisins and almond flakes to soak up the goodness. It was actually potent as heck and I could barely have two sips before I was pissed.

And as if all that food wasn’t enough, we then gorged ourselves on a banoffee pie. In case you forgot, I totally inducted it into the Hall of Fame as a Scandinavian dessert.

After all that, we were still alive. Barely. We retreated back to the fireplace and fell asleep again watching the most screwed up movie ever.

Boxing Day! Rise and shine and um, anyone hungry? Of course we are. Cam, desperate to use his BBQ, fired it up and did a big ol’ fry up for us.

Like I said, I never complain about a cooked breakfast. We had sausages, bacon, pigs in blanket and even some asparagus and a whole bunch of eggs. SO GOOD.

I was going to say “after breakfast we went home” but that would almost elude to it still being morning. Considering breakfast was at about 2pm, we started going home at 3pm, and had to battle the fucked-up-ness that is the tube strike on Boxing Day! Where is the love?

Eventually at some point in the very distant future, Panu and I crawled back into our apartment, full and sleepy from an awesome weekend away with friends, full of all things good like food, fun and marshmallows.

I hope everyone else enjoyed their Christmas just as much as I did!

14 Thoughts on “my big fat Finnish white Christmas (in London)

  1. The lasagna looks stunning and I absolutely love Korelian Pies! Very nice idea for a different Christmas menu!

  2. WOW Catty, that food looks amazing! Not many people having a bbq on Boxing day, that’s going on my list of things to do next Christmas.

  3. That sounds like such a lovely weekend! Happy hols!

  4. Happy Christmas Catty – good on you for doing a Finnish Christmas and inducting bannoffee pie into the Finnish Christmas!

  5. I’m intrigued by the karelian pasties – especially because you eat it with egg butter. Omg. That sounds amazingly good.

  6. Linguina: Thanks! The Karelian pies are DELISH, and yeah we thought we’d do something a little different 🙂

    peep_squeak: I think it should be done. Come sunshine or damn snow. It’s worth it!

    Kay: Happy holidays to you too 🙂

    Gourmet Chick: Banoffee pie should be inducted into every cuisine if you ask me!

    Su-yin: Ah – check out NQN’s Christmas post for pics of the karelian pasties – – she did a Finnish xmas too!

  7. Happy Christmas Catty. Your Finnish Christmas looks delicious, as does the lasagne, and everything else. I adore pancakes for breakfast and am kicking myself I didn’t think of making them on Christmas morning – although I may have been a little too hungover for that.
    Gloggi is rather potent isn’t it!
    Have a wonderful 2011!

  8. Darling Catty! Thankyou for the Moomins cookbook which inspired our Finnish feast. Somehow it seems much more appropriate to have a Finnish Christmas amongst snow but there’s not much chance of getting snow in Australia round about now (although I heard some areas got snow in December!). Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Panu! 😀

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  10. Omg that all looks amazing! And I can’t believe how frosty cold you all look – it’s 40C today and I am SWELTERING and trying to find a good iced coffee, hehehe.

    I love your Finnish feast. I recognised the Karelian pastries from a cookbook I have, Snowflakes and Schnapps, but the book didn’t say where they were from. Now I really wanna try making them!

    xox Sarah

  11. Anne: Gloggi is SCARY potent! and pancakes you can make any time.. like how about New Years Day brekky? I’d sure love pancakes for NYD 😀

    Lorraine: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Tai too! Haha well I loved that you guys were all crowded around a small table pretending it was snowing when it was really sweltering!

    Sarah: I have to say I haven’t made Karelian pasties either but would give it a go. Normal ones just have rice but you can try putting some mince meat in it too! HAPPY NEW YEAR! x

  12. Sounds like you did it right. So much food!!!! So happy you were able to make it back to enjoy Christmas with your friends.

  13. Mmmm… herring 🙂 and i mean it, I love herring. And the ham looked amazing. As did the lasagne. Yum. x

  14. It looks like you had an amazing Crimbo!

    I am glad that we are not the only loonies to have a BBQ in minus temps!

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