Finnish cuizine is divisive: some find it bland and boring while others praise it for being unique and daring. For those who dismiss Finnish delicacies as boring, I have two words - blood pancakes.
It took me 6 years in Finland to discover this culinary gem. For some reason Finns happily introduce you to their Karelian pies, all the varieties of salmon, herring or liquorice but often avoid to mention that for generations they’ve been adding blood to pancake dough and devouring the resulting dish with lingonberry jam.
Potential explanation for such prudence is that most people I’ve talked with have traumatizing childhood memories associated with the dish. Sad as that may be, I think it’s a bigger pity that the world at large is mostly unaware of blood pancakes. With the current vampire craze, I’m suspecting there would even be a sizable market for such delicacy.
In Finland you can buy the ready-made pancakes from any local grocery store. For the adventurous souls there is blood available from frozen food sections in the same stores (or fresh blood from meat counters in market halls) and an easy-to-follow recipe online.
The pancake’s flavour is fairly mild, but it’s still quite distinct. The experience is greatly improved with generous dollops of “puolukka hillo” aka lingonberry jam. Try at your own risk ;)