Quantcast

May Day sweets: Sima and Tippaleipä - KOAM TV 7

May Day sweets: Sima and Tippaleipä

Updated: May 01, 2014 03:23 PM
© Laura Sant / Bonnier © Laura Sant / Bonnier

By




May Day, or "Vappu," is a special day in Finland. A carnival-like spirit fills the air, and typically reserved Finns take part in outdoor festivities across the country.

The national holiday is a celebration of "worker's day," but it also marks the arrival of spring and the end of yet another long, dark winter. For kids, Vappu is all about visiting the outdoor May Day markets in the city, where knickknacks of every type are sold, from whistles to big helium balloons. No matter how old you are, May Day is not complete without tippaleipä, a funnel cake only sold around May Day, and a glass of sima, a home-brewed soda made with lemon and brown sugar.

As I child, I was fascinated by the preparation of this bubbly concoction. The procedure itself is quite simple — mix water, sugar, lemon and yeast, pour into the empty soda bottles and let ferment for three to five days — but I always took this process with grave seriousness. My dad was really the one doing most of the mixing and measuring, but I was an eager spectator, taking pride in popping raisins into each bottle before the caps were screwed on and the sima was taken to our cellar for fermentation.

The raisins play a crucial role: as they sit in the lemon mixture, the raisins soak up the yeast, and start floating up to the top of the bottle. Once all the raisins float to the surface, the sima is ready to be enjoyed. Simple as the soda-making is, it can also be very particular — too little yeast or too cold an environment and the mead turns out flat, while too much yeast or too warm of an environment and the bottles are at risk of exploding, due to the pressure created during the fermentation.

We learned this the hard way: one year our cellar stairs became flooded with sugary fizz, and we had to settle for store-bought sima, which sadly tastes nothing like the home-brewed version.

My family always spent most of Vappu at the markets, taking a break to visit my grandmother's office in one of the buildings facing the marketplace. I remember feeling so special as we would escape the crowds up to our 8th floor look out, where we were greeted with a bottle of sima and fresh tippaleipä, which my grandmother made even better by adding a touch of lemon zest to the batter.

For me, this was the highlight of the day: sitting in front of the window, sipping my lemony beverage and picking apart the strips of funnel cake, while looking down at the buzzing market square, counting the number of balloons that had escaped the hands of their owners.

I no longer live in Finland, but at the start of every spring I think back to this perfect May Day memory: family, tippaleipä, and sima.


See the recipe for Sima »
See the recipe for Tippaleipä »

 


© 2014 SAVEUR
All rights reserved.
  • Recipes from the KOAM Morning NewsAll RecipesMore>>

  • KOAM Morning News Thanksgiving Spread

    KOAM Morning News Thanksgiving Spread

    Thursday, November 23 2017 9:45 AM EST2017-11-23 14:45:23 GMT
    Ashley’s Best Green Bean Casserole Ingredients: 2(14.5ounce) cans green beans, drained 1(10.75ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup 1(6ounce) can French fried onions 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place green beans and soup in a large microwave-safe bowl.  Mix well and heat in the microwave on High until warm (3 to 5 minutes). Stir in ½ cup of cheese and heat mixture for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer gre...More >>
    Ashley’s Best Green Bean Casserole Ingredients: 2(14.5ounce) cans green beans, drained 1(10.75ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup 1(6ounce) can French fried onions 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place green beans and soup in a large microwave-safe bowl.  Mix well and heat in the microwave on High until warm (3 to 5 minutes). Stir in ½ cup of cheese and heat mixture for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer gre...More >>
  • Crocktober: Turkey CrockPot

    Crocktober: Turkey CrockPot

    Friday, October 27 2017 6:29 PM EDT2017-10-27 22:29:03 GMT
    Turkey CrockPot - from Shirley Beneke, Parsons KS 5-7lb Turkey Breast 1 pkg dry onion soup mix 16 oz can whole cranberry sauce Place turkey in slow cooker. Combine soup mix and cranberry sauce.  Spread over turkey.  Cover.  Cook on low for 8 hours.   Serve over rice.More >>
    Turkey CrockPot - from Shirley Beneke, Parsons KS 5-7lb Turkey Breast 1 pkg dry onion soup mix 16 oz can whole cranberry sauce Place turkey in slow cooker. Combine soup mix and cranberry sauce.  Spread over turkey.  Cover.  Cook on low for 8 hours.   Serve over rice.More >>
  • Slow Cooker Cheesy Bacon Ranch Pototoes

    Slow Cooker Cheesy Bacon Ranch Pototoes

    Wednesday, October 25 2017 1:27 PM EDT2017-10-25 17:27:04 GMT
    INGREDIENTS: 6 slices bacon 3 pounds red potatoes, chopped 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided 1 tablespoon Ranch Seasoning and Salad Dressing Mix, or more, to taste 2 tablespoons chopped chives DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread bacon in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Place into oven and bake until brown and crispy, about 12-14 minutes. Let cool before crumbling; set aside. Line a slow coo...More >>
    INGREDIENTS: 6 slices bacon 3 pounds red potatoes, chopped 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided 1 tablespoon Ranch Seasoning and Salad Dressing Mix, or more, to taste 2 tablespoons chopped chives DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread bacon in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Place into oven and bake until brown and crispy, about 12-14 minutes. Let cool before crumbling; set aside. Line a slow coo...More >>

EMAIL SIGNUP

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
Powered by Frankly

KOAM - Licensed to Pittsburg, Kansas
Send tips, ideas and press releases to: tips@koamtv.com
Send newsroom questions or comments to: comments@koamtv.com
Phone: (417) 624-0233 or (620) 231-0400
Web comments or questions: webmaster@koamtv.com
Newsroom Fax: (417) 624-3158

Powered by WorldNow All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 KOAM. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.