Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Minä Haluan Lanttulaatikko, Nyt!!!!

I saw that Géant had rutabagas a couple of weeks ago. Rutabagas are pretty rare around here, so I snapped them up immediately. That night, I showed them to Mrs. TBF and asked her if she'd make me some Finnish rutabaga casserole (lanttulaatikko). "Sure...I'd be happy to make lon-too-lah-tee-ko for you..." (I love when she says Finnish words!) was her response, and I figured it was a done deal.

That was ten days ago, and I guess we (Who we?) kind of forgot about them. The rutabagas are still in the fridge, and the Finnish Cook Book by Beatrice Ojakangas is still sitting on the table. I guess I'll just have to do it myself because...

...I'm a Finn, and Finns need their occasional fix of lanttulaatikko.

Updated later:

Canadian Swiss wants to know about the ingredients, so I thought I'd just post the whole recipe. It's very easy, and you can use either rutabagas (Swedes) or turnips. It's also VERY Finnish due to the fact that it contains three of the major Finnish food groups: cream, eggs, and butter! We normally ate this casserole at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter when I was growing up.

Take 2 medium rutabagas, peeled and diced (about 6 cups), and boil them in salted water to cover until soft (about 20 minutes). Drain and mash.

Soak 1/4 cup fine bread crumbs in 1/4 cup cream, stir in 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon salt, and two beaten eggs. Combine this "Finnish cocktail" with the mashed rutabagas.

Turn the slop into a buttered 2.5-quart casserole, dot the top with 2-3 tablespoons of butter, and bake in a moderate oven (350˚F/175˚C) for 1 hour or until lightly browned on top.

My mom's tip: Turn the heat down in the oven when it's done (to keep it warm) and let the casserole just sit in the oven until you're ready to eat. Oh...I don't know...another hour or so. The flavors will intensify. Maybe cover it with foil if you think it's drying out.

Another tip: it freezes really well. I made it last night in a foil pan, and it's now frozen solid in the freezer.

Serves 6 - 8 normal people, or 1 - 2 Finns.


Ms Mac said...

Oh, so that's a rutabaga. That's what I call a swede. You're right, they are pretty rare round these parts, I wonder why.

The Sour Kraut said...

Those aren't sheep testicles - or whatever it was you had The Swede ask your mom if she'd make him for breakfast.

CanadianSwiss said...

I love rutabagas, but I'm wondering what the casserole is like. What's in it?

The Big Finn said...

ms mac - I never knew about the "swede" thing until I moved to Switzerland and heard my British neighbors always talking about how they wished they could "...buy some Swedes" in the grocery store.

tsk - I like the "sheep" embellishment. When we were in high school, the Swede (not a rutabaga) slept over. Actually, I'm pretty sure it was the first time he slept over at my house. In the morning, my mom yelled downstairs and asked us what we wanted for breakfast. The Swede wanted to ask for eggs in Finnish so I told him to say "minä haluan munat" instead of "minä haluan kananmunia". The first one means "I want testicles", the second means "I want (chicken) eggs". So, yes, he went upstairs, asked my mom the question in Finnish, and my mom replied: "You want testicles???"

cs - I'll add the recipe to the post.

The DP said...

oh so that is a rutabaga! i only knew the word for that in French and Arabic! It was killing me to not know what the heck it was in English!
Thank you TBF!
And no online dictionaries did not help because they kept showing me pics of turnips.

christina said...

Mmm...that sounds really good. It would have never occured to me to do that to a rutabaga. In fact I'm not even sure if I have ever even tasted one. But I *have* seen them here in the supermarket (they're called "Steckrüben" in German, right?) so I'm going to give this a try.

Ksam said...

That's really funny, I actually know Beatrice Ojakangas. I was extremely active in the Finnish community in MN before moving here (including the Finnish language village & the Finnish-American Society), and I helped organize FinnFest when it was in MN, so I've had the opportunity to meet her several times now!

Anonymous said...

even tho i dont like rutabagas
do potatoes count?
/,,/ (-_-) /,,/