I had some fresh Salmon in the fridge that was begging to be eaten (and the kids were begging to eat it). Rather than the usual grilled Salmon steak, I decided to pull up a few Salmon recipes and give something different a try. Working my way as I am through Finnish recipes, I decided to try Finnish Salmon Soup, otherwise known as Lohikeitto. It was close to a life-changing experience! (Well, OK, it was reaaaaally delicious and the kids loved it so we have another winner here). Imagine delicious chunks of salmon, and just-right potatoes drenched in creamy soup, with a little butter and a good helping of fresh dill. Serve with rye bread.
In times past, Finnish food was seasonal; in winter there were no easily available green vegetables, etc., as there are now – and the primary purpose for food was to provide energy in the harsh climate. As a result many traditional Finnish recipes are simple dishes consisting of meat (or fish) and easily stored staples such as potatoes. Lohikeitto is one of these traditional dishes – and as a bonus, it’s easy to prepare. As with many Finnish recipes, Dill is used for flavouring (Finns seem to like their Dill).
Finnish Salmon Soup (Lohikeitto) – Ingredients
- Tbsp Butter (you can use Olive Oil as an alternative)
- 1 Brown or Yellow Onion, finely chopped
- 4-5 Potatoes (buy a firm variety as they need to retain their shape through cooking)
- 1.25 litres Fish Stock
- 1/2 kg Fresh Salmon Fillet, cubed
- 100-200 ml Cream (or Milk, if you prefer a thinner soup)
- 1 cup Fresh Dill, finely chopped
- 5 pieces Bay Leaf
- Dash of sea salt
- Dash of pepper
- Dash of Allspice
Finnish Salmon Soup (Lohikeitto) – Instructions
- Cut the potatoes roughly into 1-inch cubes, and keep in water to prevent discolouration
- In a large saucepan, simmer the chopped onions in the butter over medium heat until soft
- Add peeled and diced potatoes and then enough water to just cover the potatoes. Turn up the heat to high, cover the saucepan with a lid, bring to a boil and cook the potatoes until they are just soft, adjusting the heat down as necessary
- Add the cubed salmon to the pot and cook until it is mostly opaque (this will take about 5 minutes, if that). Do not stir the soup so as not to break up the salmon
- If you want to keep the Salmon cubes looking like cubes, once the salmon is cooked, remove from the soup and set aside
- Add the fish stock and cream, along with a sprinkling of salt and pepper to taste, with just a dash of Allspice. Cook for 5-10 minutes.
- If you prefer a thicker soup, as I do, add cornstarch slurry (mix 1 Tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 Tablespoon of water, stir to dissolve the cornstarch) to the soup and simmer until the soup has thickened
- Take off the heat and stir in the fresh dill
- (If you removed the salmon cubes, transfer the cooked salmon into individual bowls and ladle the soup over
- If you want to add a touch of artistry to the presentation, place a small sprig of dill on top of the contents of each bowl
- Serve with rye bread and butter
Finnish Cucumber Salad (Kurkkusalattti) makes a great side-salad to go with this soup.
Hyvää ruohahalua! (Bon Appetit!)…………Nigel