Have you ever picked cloudberries, bilberries, or lingonberries? Have you ever foraged for mushrooms? If you haven’t, then you might want to join Estonian Pille Petersoo of the blog Nami-Nami (Estonian slang for delicious) as she ventures into the forests and fields around Tallinn in search of edibles.
Food site Culinate has a good profile on this blog, which blends kitchen-adventure tales with primers on Estonian cuisine. I don’t know about you, but my knowledge about the food of this region was somewhat lacking until Nami-Nami came along.
From the Culinate interview:
Estonian food is simple, hearty, and rather seasonal. During our cold and dark winters we survive by eating lots of filling pork and potato dishes and thick, heartwarming soups. The typical summer diet is totally different, consisting mostly of green salads and barbecued meat.
Estonia has been under the control of various neighbors (Danes, Swedes, Germans, Russians), and this is reflected in the cuisine. An interesting mix.
The blog is full of traditional recipes, like the tiny mushroom pies called seenepirukad, cheese-curd patties called sõrnikud, and foraged dishes such as nettle soup. Pille is also single-handedly introducing the non-Estonian world to the joys of kama. This mixture of boiled, roasted, and ground peas, rye, barley, and wheat is a traditional Estonian ingredient used in a variety of drinks and summer desserts. Pille has converted more than a few readers to its nutty flavor.
If you can’t make it out to Estonia yourself to wander the fields and forests, a visit to Nami-Nami is the next best thing.