hyvää joulua and happy boxing day!

I hope you all had the merriest of merry Christmases. And if you didn’t celebrate, I hope your Chinese food was awesome!

We had a really fantastic Christmas celebration, starting off with a Christmas Eve gathering with my husband’s extended family.  The food was awesome.

We had meatballs, spinach dip, shrimp, scallops and bacon-wrapped sausages (which I ate about a billion of). Plus suolakala sandwiches (the first of many Finn foods you’ll see in this post). Salted salmon on rye bread.

Later on we gathered around the TV and watched some old 8mm home movies of my mother-in-law’s family.

It was very cool and the entire time I had the attic scene from Christmas Vacation going through my head.

A whole lot of wine was drank and a whole lot of cousins were introduced, but then we made it to bed. For Santa was on his way!

There was a bit of last-minute wrapping on Christmas morning.

And a whole lot of unwrapping.

I enjoyed my Vancouver Olympics mittens.

Seriously enjoyed them. As in, wore them all day.

After presents, it was time for Christmas breakfast.

Standards : orange, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, coffee bread.
Not-so-standard : piirakka.

Rye crust filled with a rice pudding. Served with maple syrup. Although I heard talks of people eating these with egg salad and lots of other things on top. They aren’t very sweet and are used as a base for both savory and sweet foods.

The rest of Christmas day was spent in our jammies playing with our toys. Lots of Wii was played and there was lots more wine. We also tuned into the 24 hour Scrooged marathon on AMC. Oh, and Clancey, the world’s largest chocolate lab, and I became close friends.

There was a whole lot of Donkey Kong Country Returns played into the wee hours of the morning by my husband and his brothers. I was a lightweight and went to rest my cold-ridden head early on in the evening.

Happy Boxing Day! Not a holiday ever celebrated in the U.S., but Boxing Day means one thing in Canada—shopping. Apparently the Boxing Day sales rival the American Black Friday sales. Not our cuppa tea though. For us, Boxing Day just means more food and another day to relax with family.

Boxing Day breakfast was another Finn specialty, pannukakku.

I have a recipe on my blog for thin Finnish pancakes. Pannukakku is also called “Finnish pancakes” but is totally different from the recipe I posted. Pannukakku is a baked pancake made of milk, eggs and flour. It is thick, the crust is fluffy and the middle has a custardy texture and flavor.

It can be served with fruit or jam, but we went simple and had it with butter and maple syrup (and apples, obviously).

There is a big Boxing Day family dinner this afternoon that I might actually take a shower and put on some real clothes for. Although I am certainly not going outside.

My Canadian family has stopped saying it is “mild” and now are saying it is “pretty cold”. I’m gonna go put my maple leaf mittens back on.


  1. jodi says

    Oh, Clancey how I love him!!!!! Make sure Bill lets you give him lots of treats. Give him a hug for me and lots of love to the whole clan!!! Ask Janet to make the artichoke dip.

  2. Jenn says

    Oh my goodness…. It has been so long since I have had those Finnish foods! My grandmother, who lived with us for 16 years used to make those! Both of my parents are from Finland but unfortunately I never got to learn a whole lot of the language…but I recognize it when I see it! Thanks for the jaunt down memory lane!~

    • says

      It was a lot of fun experiencing that part of my husband’s culture. He had forgotten a lot of it (hadn’t been home for Christmas in 4 years) and it was fun to rediscover it with him. There were a few times when his Mom would say something to us in Finn and he’d have to translate.

  3. Jana says

    It looks like a winter wonderland and culinary heaven collided. I wouldn’t be surprised if no one really minded if they got stuck there :)

    My husband and I finally made it to Mississauga two days ago to spend some time with my family here – and you know what? Santa left Vancouver Olympics mittens for me, too! Can’t wait to wear them in Indy and feel really proud.

  4. Sarah says

    Looks like a fantastic Christmas! And the Pannukakku looks very similar to something my family makes called Dutch babies. I’m not sure where they came from but I’m leaning towards the Pennsylvania Dutch side of the family…

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