Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring, Swiss Roll, Donuts

The first day of spring came and went in Finland. As you can see, the snow is melting. You can begin to see some green from the trees. And you can even tell what color the cars are under the snow. When walking to the market or to class, pavement peeks through. The top layer of packed snow melts which reveals a layer of ice underneath with some more snow underneath that. The snow piled up on the side of the roads has melted some so you can actually see the cars in the street as you walk past.

And then it snows again.

We actually had some warm days here in Kouvola. The sun shone brightly and the temperatures reached +7 (40s F). And for one day the ice on the walking paths melted even more so there were places big enough to put your shoe in without snow. The snow melted into small rivers at points which flowed into the walking tunnels that are built under roads to get pedestrians across the street without having to cross traffic. The tunnels are decorated too; there is one I walk through to get to school nicknamed the Dolphin Tunnel due to the dolphin art inside. And the snow melted enough that we were able to discover that that car on the right... is white. I was betting orange, Niko bet red. And at the moment there is little to no snow on the trees. But it's a warm day today, +2 (low 30s), though tomorrow and the Friday it will fall back down again to -4 (low 20s).

But enough about the weather and eternal snow of Finland. It's more fun to write about food. Like Swiss Roll. And bagels. And donuts.

Last night after class/work Niko made us Swiss Roll. Unlike the Hostess/Little Debbie version, there is no chocolate, but it consists of dough, whipped cream, jam and fruits. Last night's version used strawberries and banana slices. It was very tasty and we plan to make many more versions in the future.

This morning, after running an errand, Niko and I walked to the shopping center and stopped by Arnolds, a wonderful little bakery/coffee shop with donuts, coffee, muffins, cinnamon roll (Spinny) and...bagels. Real bagels. I had a delicious veggie bagel (with artichoke-so hard to find here!) and they had a special deal where if you buy a bagel you can get drink and donut for cheap as a sort of combo so I got a hazelnut donut and Niko got a fudge one. After the bagel sandwiches (which taste just like American bagels btw), we decided to save the donuts for tonight, which is the only way I could have managed to take a photo of them. Donuts in Finland (at least the ones I have tried) are more cake-y compared to a Dunkin Donuts or Krispy Kreme but they are still definitely delicious. Plus the flavors are completely different here, like white chocolate and licorice and the mysterious pomade-is it strawberry? cherry? apple? no idea...)

Life is always an adventure here.

kevät : spring
kääretorttu : swiss roll
ostoskeskus : shopping cente
donitsi : donut
sataa lunta : it's snowing (literally: it's raining snow)
mansikka : strawberry
banaani : banana

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