Finnish pasties with egg butter

Finnish pasties with egg butter

The New Nordic
Simon Bajada

I ate these just near the border of Russia in the province of Karelia, which runs along the eastern side of Finland. I was on a tiny, 200 square metre island for three days, experiencing Finnish midsummer – which seems to mainly involve a lot of aquavit! These Karelian treats could never be as nourishing as they were on that occasion, served for breakfast, warm out of the pan with lots of melting salty butter; nevertheless, cooked at home, they are perfect all year round when in need of some hearty, reviving carbs.


Quantity Ingredient
100ml full-cream milk
1 tablespoon salted butter, melted, plus extra to serve

Egg butter

Quantity Ingredient
4 eggs
80g salted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon chopped dill


Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon salted butter
120g short-grain rice
650ml full-cream milk


Quantity Ingredient
300g light rye flour, plus extra for dusting


  1. First make the filling. Bring 300 ml water and the butter to the boil in a saucepan and stir in the rice. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the milk, increase the heat and stir until it boils. Reduce the heat to low and simmer with the lid on for about 50 minutes, or until the rice is just tender. Season with a pinch of salt then set aside to cool.
  2. While the rice is cooling, boil the eggs for 7–8 minutes until hard-boiled. Peel, and then chop them finely. Combine with the room-temperature butter and the dill.
  3. Make the dough by mixing together the flour, 150–200 ml water and a pinch of salt. Use your hands to knead the mixture until it forms a thick dough. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured work surface and roll out to a thickness of about 2 mm; you can use a pasta-making machine for this.
  4. Using an 8 cm round cutter, cut out circles of dough; you should be able to get 15–20. Roll the circles a little thinner if possible, using some flour to help with the rolling.
  5. Preheat the oven to its hottest temperature (around 275°C).
  6. Spread a thin layer of the rice mixture into the middle of each dough circle. Bring up the sides of the pastry over the filling and crimp the dough. Place on a baking tray and cook for 15–20 minutes. Make sure the pasties don’t burn, but you do want them to get so hot that the filling bubbles and blisters a little.
  7. Mix the milk with the melted butter and brush over the top of the pasties. Place them on a tray and cover with a sheet of baking paper and a tea towel. This will help them to soften.
  8. Eat while still warm with the prepared egg and butter mixture spread over the top.
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