Saturday, June 21, 2008

Kesäkeitto (Summer Soup)

Hurray! It's Midsummer!

In Finland (where my parents and my two sisters are traveling right now) the big cities are abandoned. Helsinki is a ghost town, inhabited only by hapless foreigners who didn't know about Juhannuspäivä. The natives are all ensconced in their cottages by the thousands of inland lakes, preparing the bonfires, the beer, and the makkara (Finnish sausage, so much better than American sausage that the word "sausage" almost doesn't apply). I loved Juhannus. It was the one day of the year parents let us literally stay up all night (which Finns do to celebrate the height of the midnight sun).

I wish I were there, with my folks!

In anticipation, I made my first ever kesäkeitto. Two cups of small, new potatoes, two cups of snap beans, three small, sweet onions, two to three carrots cut and quartered into two-inch long pieces, one cup of new peas. Boil for five minutes in just enough water to cover the veggies, and then add four cups of milk that you've brought to a boil with a tablespoon of sugar, a teaspoon of salt, and two tablespoons of flour. Simmer for ten minutes, and then add a dollop of butter and some parsley as a garnish. O boy, I love summer soup! It brings back amazing childhood memories.

Glen had a rough day the other day. So Göran cancelled plans he had for the evening and came home early. I made the summer soup while the two of them worked together in our garden. We had dinner on the porch. Glen loved the soup! He had seconds! We went for a long ride around the lakes. (Minnesota looks strangely like Finland, with its many lakes and its forests of birch and pine.) We rode twenty miles. Glen was leading us. He didn't know where he wanted to go. He just knew he wanted to ride, ride, ride until it was dark. That was our Midsummers celebration!

Happy Juhannus!

1 comment:

Maraiya said...

I had to chuckle at your post as today is a day of mourning for me as I strongly dislike the days growing shorter!

By the way, I like your countdown. I'm so excited for you both.