Top 5 Delightful Finnish Traditional Christmas Dishes

You already know Santa Claus is from Finland, and people around the world send letters to Santa Claus every year to wish a Merry Christmas. You can feel the Christmas atmosphere in restaurants, shops, schools, and at home weeks before Christmas. Decorating your home and preparing nice presents for family and friends is also an important part of Christmas. Everyone is as busy as Santa Claus, who delivers Christmas presents to children around the world!


Christmas street


In Finland, Christmas is a precious time for families to gather together and to eat amazing Christmas food. The Christmas dinner is eaten on the Christmas Eve, December 24th. Families enjoy eating a variety of traditional Christmas dishes and sharing the warm and festive atmosphere of the Happy Christmas. Then, what kind of food do people usually eat or drink in Christmas season?


Christmas dinner


1. Glögi

Glögi is a traditional Finnish Christmas drink that is a type of mulled wine. It is made from hot red wine or red juice, mixed with different spices such as cinnamon and cardamon. If you want to enjoy the Scandinavian and Nordic versions, try adding almonds and raisins into a cup of glögi. You will have the chance to drink it almost everywhere in Finland during Christmas season. In cold winter, a cup of warm glögi and a Finnish gingerbread cookie make you feel warm inside.


A cup of warm glögi


2. Oven-baked ham

Ham is an essential part of Finnish cuisine to fulfill a perfect Christmas dinner. Baking the ham for a long time in the oven is one of the Finnish Christmas traditions and rituals. It is eaten with homemade mustard or bread along with the other Christmas dishes.


Oven-baked Christmas ham


3. Root vegetable and liver casseroles

Casserole dishes, along with ham, are the most iconic dishes at a Christmas dinner. The vegetables or liver are cooked and pureed, mixed with milk or cream, egg, flour and different seasonings. It is baked in the oven until ready. There are usually four casseroles made with swede, potato, carrot and liver and those are served with Christmas ham and other meat dishes at Christmas dinner.


4. Christmas pastries

The most common Finnish pastries consumed in Christmas time are star-shaped Christmas pastries. Those are made with puff pastry and filled with sweet plum or apricot jam.


Christmas pastries


5. Rice porridge

It is a part of Christmas dinner and is usually eaten as the last dish but it sometimes it is eaten for breakfast. Rice porridge is usually served with sugar and cinnamon on top on Christmas. Traditionally, whoever finds an almond hidden in the pot of porridge will have “good fortune.”

In Finnish, Merry Christmas is ‘Hyvää joulua’.


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