Archive for February 2015

White lilies


In the beginning of this week I bought some white lilies from a local florist. 

As I was waiting for my flowers to be wrapped I suddenly remembered a London-based florist Petal & Cycle. 





Petal & Cycle delivers flowers in the Central London in 90 minutes by bike. I think the business idea is great because bicycling in Central London is much faster way than driving and if you remember someone's birthday at the same day it's not a total catastrophe.


Just wondered would this work in Helsinki...Ideally thinking why not, although a realist inside says something else. What do you think?

Have a wonderful weekend!
I

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String-like hat rack

Bunch of flowers and tidy home. Sometimes just a wishful thinking, but not today....


Previously I wrote about hat racks, which I bought as a second hand. I organized hat racks to a bit unusual, but needed place.



Here and now they serve in the first hall as a shoe rack. I have some plans made for this but at this moment this place will do.


More about that later. Have a good week!

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Because we were made to move

Last week was our winter holiday week. And so it was all about...Snow. There was snow and ice everywhere.


Ice here and there on the road and icy cliffs.  


Cross-country skiing...umm..with dogs.
What a perfect work-out for German shepherds ;) 

On the track...
Or...off-tracks

Building snow castle

Luckily my child had a professional skiing instructor as a skiing teacher. Instructor happened to be a former professional Nordic ski racer aka my mother. 

I have given more value to my mothers advice of healthy living (and good sports equipments) as the years have passed. Both are priceless. Sports, especially functional exercise has stayed along the way and other things such as staying fit better skin etc. have followed as a bonus. 

Personally, I could not care less whether my child becomes a professional athlete. What I do care is that my child moves and eats more or less in a healthy way and has a good social network. 

Ideally sports should just need a gentle push - not to be dead serious. Sometimes easier said than done :) But staying positive and showing good example has an important impact. Or that is how I feel. What about you?

Have a good Tuesday! Next about those hat racks and blinz..

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Blinz - sneak peek to gluten free salty pancake with a twist


As I mentioned before I have promised to make gluten free and lactose free salty pastries and something for sweet tooth. 

Few weeks ago we served blinis. It is a salty pancake which is possible to prepare without wheat or other gluten containing flour. However, sometimes my batter has not been so fluffy and it has been quite flat to be honest.

All you need for blini batter is..

* buckwheat flour
* psyllium
* sparkling water
* eggs
* baking powder
* salt

Traditional blini (contains wheat and buckwheat flour) looks like this..

Photo credit by: Maku

Mine looked like this...

I had waffle pan instead of normal blini pan. When you have more guests, it saves time :)I also used psyllium in batter in order to have volume and texture. Psyllium has actually changed my mind about  gluten free recipes. 


Blini fillings

Recipe follows within few days....Since then have a great week!



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Weekend mud cake (gluten free and non dairy)

Wasn't suppose to blog this weekend, but since I got few minutes own time decided to share a perfect gluten free and non dairy mud cake recipe. 




We had a family dinner this weekend and made lambkin roast with red wine sauce and oven made potatoes and generous green salad. Roast was bought from Stockmann and it was really nice and tender. Stockmann has become my favourite grocery store. 

As a lambkin wine we were suggested Piedemonte Reserva 2009 from Navarra, Northern area of Spain and it was not bad at all :) We used the same wine also to our red wine sauce. I have to share recipes also for those..




But as a dessert we had something which I had never done before. Even though I wanted to make a test bake because I have promised to bake few non dairy/lactose free and gluten free salty pastries and some sweet desserts to one occasion. 

Though following recipe might sound odd it tastes good. Of course when serving for a celiac one has to remember to have products which do not contain gluten. I bought unopened packages for this occasion.  It is also necessary to be careful with bowls, whips, spoons etc. everything that is in contact with batter. Cross-contamination from normal flour is always a risk. Original recipe for this mud cake was found here. I made few modifications.

Mudcake
 480 grams baked, rinsed chick peas (I used canned ones)4 eggs
150 grams sugar (I used icing sugar) 
2 tsp baking powder (mix with sugar)
250 grams baking chocolate (I had chocolate with 70   % of cocoa powder-remember to check that chocolate does not contain milk products or flours that contain gluten. Surprisingly quite many do)


Put oven to 190 °C. Grind/mill chick peas to even and quite smooth. Mix chick peas with eggs and give a good whip. Add sugar and baking powder and mix again. Melt chocolate in the microwave or as I did in the water bath. Add chocolate to batter. Put batter into cake tin, which is oiled with rapeseed oil and covered with gluten-free flour or coconut flakes. Bake the mud cake for around 35-40 minutes. Enjoy  with soy cream and raspberries.

Enjoy with cup of coffee! Raspberries were straight from  grandmothers fridge. Yammy!
Ok now I need to go.. Wonderful to see that kids like to spend time outdoors when it's sunny. See you!

      *********

Evening edit: A tip that I want to share: If you own Kenwood Chef or Major this is the perfect equipment for getting chick peas even-sized/rather smooth.





Kenwood Chef AT647 Accessory part. Beats normal blender 10-0.
I'm sorry for the quality of this picture. You can find better pictures here. No collaboration made with Kenwood. This part is just ideal for for example this.

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Sunshine and second hand finds

This week we have enjoyed few rays of sun. During lunch the sunshine   was so bright that we began to joke with colleagues that when will this misery stop. Oh, how I've missed the sun!



Our cherry tree had few broken twigs so I decided to save few and put the in Arabia's flower vase. Avocados are not just for looks in Kaj Frank's Lokerovati. Love avocados in salads, sushi and vietnamese summer rolls.



Few days ago I made some finds at local flee market. Artek Siena has been on my wish list for some time and now I ran into this....





Artek Siena cushion cover was just for 1€. I think it suits quite well.



This String -like, modern hat-rack (bought 2) was 2€ each. How convenient! These items suit our modern look and I found a perfect place for hat-racks. I just won't be using them in a ordinary place. They would also match with Hay Hee chairs and String shelving.

Next time I will show what I did with hat-racks. Since then..Have a good weekend!

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Kids room cabinet before and after

As mentioned earlier we have old cabinet in kids room with scrapes.  Scrapes could be hided with paint, but because it needed proper facilities and since I don't want to disturb my sister all the time I decided to use easier and time-saving way. I used some removable  interior stickers that fit for purpose.


BEFORE
Scrapes were especially at the lowest drawer and were better seen by eye than camera picture shows. 

PEGASOS AND PRINCESS
&
BEE AND LADYBIRD




....
AND
LATER
....

Drawer now. Interior stickers (bought here) were easy to remove and use again. Still, I advice removing stickers gently. The best thing is that when fairies are no longer "in" you can just take stickers  away and no glue etc. remained.

Also glass vitrine found its place on the wall. At the moment I'm not sure whether this is the perfect place for it and should replace it with another one. We'll see.

However, we have had so much snow that I need to go and shovel some snow. Have a good Thursday!

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The "magic box"- Why Finnish babies sleep in cardboard boxes ?

This post was first about kids room makeover but then I saw BBC's article about Finnish maternity package and how it has decreased our infant mortality rates. Well, to be more precise I have to add that also national healthcare system and for example paediatrician Arvo Ylppö had a significant role in lowering infant mortality.

When a woman is pregnant she has a right to a free dental care. In addition pregnant woman is entitled to municipal pre-natal clinic and doctor where they check that everything (for example weight, blood pressure, blood sugar and haemoglobin) is alright. Dental care is important for both child and parent. Nowadays high taxation has made free dental care and pre-natal clinic visits possible.

I'm perhaps the wrong person to tell if this would work in other countries. If it worked in poor Finland since 1940's, why not? It might be easier said than done, but not impossible.

So what is this mysterious maternity box? It is, as said in the title a cardboard box which is packed with things that a baby will most probably need within first months. Here (year 2014 maternity package) is the whole content.

Picture credit by: Kela
As well as a container box works as a small crib for the newborn baby. It is sort of nest with a small mattress, mattress cover, undershoot, duvet cover, blanket and sleeping bag/quilt. My parents still have my maternity box and I have also saved the one that I received. Clothes are quite gender neutral and also the famous Finnish weather is thought by adding snowsuit, hat, insulated mittens and booties.

And this is sold where? At the moment nowhere. Kela is a governmental institute so it takes some time. Some also sell maternity packages with used and/or non-used clothes. I will make a post when it's possible :)

And for non-Finnish citizen it is still possible to give birth in Finland. It costs from few thousands to 10 000 € (which is the upper limit)  Questions? Don't hesitate to ask.

So, that was something else what I had planned for today but next time I will be with original plans.

Since then have a good week! 

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