All posts by Minka Salo


The next thing I would like to do with my friends is bake pulla.

My favourite recipe is this:



5 dl lukewarm whole milk
50 g fresh yeast
2 dl sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground cardamom
1 egg
about 15 dl bread flour
170 g soft butter

for the filling
150 g soft butter
6 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon

for the egg wash
1 egg

pearl sugar, to sprinkle

In a large mixing bowl, combine the lukewarm milk and crumbled yeast. Add sugar, salt, cardamom, and egg and mix untilcombined. Gradually add about two thirds of the flour and knead. Add butter and knead until well combined. Continue to knead the dough, and gradually add just enough flour so the dough comes clean off the sides of the bowl and doesn’t stick to your hand.

Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel. Let the dough rise in a warm, draft-free place for about 1 hour, or until it doubles in size.

My friend from France


I asked my fried if she remembered any funny things about Finland of Finnish people


Finnish language is like there is not enough air for breathing. People have deep voices. She found it funny.

She felt totally lost in winter when she once went to bed at 7pm because it had already been dark for 4 hours and in summer when she was having dinner at midnight and was woken up by the birds at 2am.

The small cute cafés were helpful for surviving the darkness.



My friend from France


I also asked my friend what things she found the most memorable here in Finland


The feeling after jumping into a frozen lake is something very special that she discovered in Finland. It´s like cleaning the body and making your mind fresh, she said.

She was initially shocked by naked people in the dressing rooms of public saunas. Then she got used to sometimes seeing naked people in the wild.

The most amazing skies she had ever seen in her life were in Finland. Tons of pink and grey in winter and yellow/pink/blue in summer.

My friend from France

I asked my friend what she liked or disliked about Finland when she was living here in Tampere for several months.

When she was doing the dishes, she wondered where she should put the dishes after washing them because there was no space on the kitchen counter. She wasn’t sure how they could even do the dishes in Finland until her friend showed her the Finnish drying cupboard (which she found very convenient).

She was at the beginning shocked by her neighbours not keeping the door open for her while she was also entering the building. Then shesaid she understood that Finnish people are very autonomous, and that wasn’t a rude thing.

She really enjoyed that open-minded side of the culture, to respect and let people live their own lives how they wish. She said she never felt judged by others when she was here.


One of the first things to discuss with our foreign friends is sauna. I want to know what people think about our sauna. Many visitors seem to like it. Our Spanish friends say that it reminds them of scorching summer days and makes them feel uncomfortable. After a really hot summer here in Finland I am starting to understand that point. We did not warm our sauna for many weeks this summer.


Kuvahaun tulos haulle sauna kuvagalleria

Nudity is a big issue for many foreigners. Beating yourself with a vihta or competing who can stay there the longest. These are some of the more memorable things about sauna, but it means a lot more to Finns.

Sauna is a quiet place to think in peace or discuss deep thoughts with your friends or just spend time in silence with a friend. It is meditative.

For older people it was a place to wash yourself, a place to give birth and a place to make food. For many it is more like a second church. There is something holy and peaceful about sauna. And in my opinion, a tv or speakers don’t belong there.

I would really like visitors to discover the real sauna.

Lingon pie

Puolukkapiirakka / Pastel de fritos rosos / Lingon pie

100g voita / mantequilla / butter

1dl sokeria / azúcar / sugar

1 muna / huevo / egg

2dl jauhoja / harina / flour

1 tl leivinjauhetta / levadura / bakin pouder


300g puolukoita / frutos rosos /berries

1 prk kermaviiliä / nata en crema para cocinar

1 muna / huevo / egg

½ dl sokeria / azúcar / sugar

1tl vaniljasokeria / vanilla / vanilla sugar

In our evening together, we made a lingonberry pie. We found out that lingonberries are well-known in Spain too, but mixers were a new acquaintance. They use stick blenders instead. Irene and Teresa told us that they don´t make pies out of berries at home, only apple pies are common. And they don´t usually specify berries by name. Kermaviili was not known in Spain.

We discussed different food cultures among students of different countries. Traditional Finnish dishes include potatoes and meat, rice and chicken, pasta, salmon. Here in Finland we make soups from potatoes and vegetables and meat or fish. We also have a lot of international dishes on a regular basis.

Traditionally, we bake pulla. We didn’t make it ourselves this time, but tasted one from the bakery. It was nice to bake together.

My Top 5 Movies

My Top 5 Movies

We met on Friday evening and discussed movies. We hadn’t seen the same ones. That’s why I’ll list my favourites here, if you have some spare time to watch them.



Calendar Girls is a British comedy film from 2003. It is directed by Nigel Cole, with Helen Mirren and Julie Walters playing the main roles.

Calendar Girls.jpg

The movie is based on a true story. It takes place in Yorkshire, where a group of women decide to produce a nude calendar to raise money for a local hospital.


This picture was awarded the British Comedy Award for Best Comedy Film.


A Good Year is a British-American comedy-drama film from 2006. It is directed and produced by Ridley Scott. The film stars Russell Crowe and Marion Cappreciate. The film takes place on a vineyard in Provence in south-eastern France.


P.S. I Love You is an American drama film from 2007. It is directed by Richard LaGravenese. The film is based on a novel of the same name by Cecelia Ahern. It stars Hilary Swank and Gerard Butler.


Under the Tuscan Sun is an American romantic comedy drama film from 2003. It is written, produced, and directed by Audrey Wells and starring Diane Lane. It is Based on Frances Mayes’ 1996 memoir of the same name. The film is about a recently divorced writer who buys a villa in Tuscany.


The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is a British comedy-drama film from 2011. It is directed by John Madden. It is based on the novel These Foolish Things, by Deborah Moggach. The movie features a lot of famous British actors, such as Judi Dench, Celia Imrie, Bill Nighy, Ronald Pickup, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson and Penelope Wilton. They play a group of British pensioners moving to a retirement hotel in India.


So, these are some of my favourite films I’d recommend to you.

Minka Salo ASO17

Greetings from Ireland


This is a postcard to my friends in EOTO. I had a mother-daughter trip to Dublin on my autumn holiday. A day before leaving came the news of Ophelia, but our flight was not cancelled.

We planned to do some shopping. So we headed to the shops on Monday morning, but most of them were closed and the ones which were open asked customers to leave. “Code red”, the shop assistants told us; this had never happened before. So shopping was out of the question. But luckily we were in Ireland. The pubs were open, no code red there.

The authorities asked people to sit inside, but we went for a walk. The city was quite empty, a bit windy, with only few cars driving by on the empty streets. Then a familiar face walks by, with a group of men following him. Big men in black suits, wearing earpieces. And the leader of the group was a small old man with grey hair who looked a lot like Bill Clinton. My uncle said he has a reputation with young women. That’s why the men in black were following him. Hillary wants to be on the safe side.


Ophelia didn’t hit Dublin hard; we only saw one branch falling down. I was more afraid of sitting in the backseat of my uncle’s car when he was driving, than of the storm called Ophelia.

Minka Salo

Ensitapaaminen Pyynikin näkötornilla



Miten opettaa suomea; vaikea kieli ja hiljainen kansa, joka vaikenee sujuvasti ja monella tavalla. Suomalainen haluaa olla kansainvälinen, kielitaitoinen ja vaikka on ylpeä suomalaisuudestaan ei käytännössä anna paljon mahdollisuuksia vierailijalle suomen kieleen tutustumiseen.

Aina kun se mahdollista me puhumme englantia, jotta meidän kielitaitomme paranisi. Suomi on vaikea kieli hallita täydellisesti, mutta se ei anna meille tekosyytä jättää opettamatta jotain. Kuinka tulla toimeen suomen kielellä?  Sijamuodoista viis, jos on sanoja joilla voi tehdä itseään ymmärretyksi. Suomalinen koulutusjärjestelmä on perustunut oikeellisuudelle, täydellisyydelle ja virheistä rokotetaan. Yrittäminen, positiivisuus, uskallus eivät ole olleet arvostelun kriteerejä. Toivottavasti tavallisessa elämässä selviytymiselle vieraalla kielellä annettaisiin enemmän arvoa jo pienten koululaisten kanssa, kun suhde kieleen ja kansainvälistymiseen on vielä alullaan.



Niinpä ensitapaamisella me pääosin puhuimme englantia, vaikka taitoja, esim.  luetun ymmärtämisessä, oli jo olemassa. Tavoitteemme esitellä jotain tamperelaisuutta oli ilmeisen käytetty idea, koska ryhmämme jokainen jäsen oli vieraillut Pyynikin näkötornilla useita kertoja.

Tapaaminen oli kuitenkin onnistunut. Vaihdoimme ajatuksia eri kulttuurien välisistä eroista, koulutuksen erilaisuuksista ja samanlaisuuksista sekä kielen vaikutuksesta opiskeluun. Löysimme paljon mielenkiintoisia ideoita ja mahdollisuuksia tulevien tapaamisten varalle ja niitä jäänkin innolla odottamaan. Kiitos innostavasta kohtaamisesta teille kaikille.


Minka Salo