I am limited in the length of my posts here. I don't know if it is the iPad or Finnish internet, but it is just easier to start a new post on the food at Lomamokkila. A few days before we got here, I emailed Kalle and asked about how we get to the B&B from the train station as it is quite far out in the country. Do we take a taxi (or taksi as they are spelled here-Finnish is a very phonetic language) or a bus? When he responded with my options he also asked if we would be joining them for dinner-it was €14 a piece and we quickly decided that since we would be on a train most of that day it might be nice to just stay in for dinner. However, since they had a kitchen available we figured we'd go into town at some point, buy groceries and I would cook. Needless to say, we abandon that idea minutes after we sat down to dinner that first night. Last nights dinner consisted of a winter squash soup with thyme that I had to restrain Doreen from going back for thirds. They had a pot roast like dish with large chunks of beef along with carrots and other vegetables. The meat was from the highland cattle they raise on the ranch-strangely enough these are also the cattle they raise at the ranch where I cook in Camp Verde! The meat was remarkably tender with a clean flavor. We ate vendace-the tiny fish I have discovered are ubiquitous here in Finland which we could eat at every meal as they are delicious! There was a green salad, potato salad with fresh dill, baked macaroni and cheese, spiced green tomatoes, mashed potatoes with gravy and bread pudding for dessert. When we were filling our plates, another guest was pouring himself a drink from a row of pitchers lined up with milk, water and what I thought was iced tea. Doreen asked if I wanted water or tea and the guest took a sip of tea and said, "It is beer!" Laura then came over and told us it was homemade beer! It is yeasty and almost sweet and only faintly alcoholic, but we are smitten with it. Breakfast this morning was equally sumptuous with yogurt, granola, Finnish porridge (baked oatmeal), an assortment of sweet rolls, vendace (again! And yes, we ate them for breakfast!!), thin sliced cheese and meat, boiled eggs, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers, pickled herring (I did get Doreen to try a bite of mine, but she made a face saying, "I didn't like it as a kid and I still don't like it!"), a baked savory that consisted of a tender crust topped with vegetables and more. And of course, coffee, but no beer!
Tonight at dinner I actually took pics! The soup was a light vegetable soup that was so fresh the peas popped in your mouth. There was a baked salmon dish in an amazing sauce, meatballs, a grated turnip and raisin salad (which I can't wait to go home and recreate), grated beets baked in cream (another dish I will definitely try at home!), roasted tomatoes, green salad, cucumbers and a rhubarb purée with vanilla cream for dessert, although purée doesn't really describe it. Doreen had served herself dessert before me and was on her way back to our table when she tasted the first mouthful. I heard her moan from across the room.