Sausages and potatoes

Picture: Seppo Hinkula / Visit Finland

The summer in Finland starts on 1st June.

Most Finns leave their city apartments for the tranquility of the countryside and their summer cottages, which are usually situated by lakes.

Barbecues are very popular, and smoked and grilled foods are prepared in the sunshine.

Herbs, such as dill and parsley, are picked fresh from the garden to add flavours to the summer recipes.

The lakeside sauna is another very important part of the Finnish summer experience, and after sauna, it is time for hot grilled sausages and cool beers.

By June it is possible to buy fresh home-grown strawberries and small new potatoes, delicious when served with a dab of butter and fresh chopped dill.

Rhubarb pies are another favourite.

The highlight of the summer season is the Midsummer holiday, celebrated at the last weekend of June.

Midsummer Eve means bonfires on the shores of lakes and sea alike, and naturally eating too: sausage, pancakes and smoked fish among others.

The gastronomic culmination of the summer is 21st July, when the crayfish season begins.

Even Finns living abroad like to come to home at this time to join their friends at the crayfish parties held all over the country.

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