March 12, 2011

Capsicum soup and Finnish scones


Hello friends,

I hope you are all well and safe. I'm sure you share the same feeling of shock after seeing the horrendous devastation in Japan. It is hard to believe that we were travelling around this country just a couple of months ago. We are very grateful that all our relatives in Japan are safe, but our hearts go out to everyone affected.

I think I'm personally a little bit obsessed with the idea of enjoying my life to the fullest. When natural disasters like these hit, one can't help but wonder how fragile life is. Perhaps it's not such an unhealthy obsession after all. 

I felt like we needed something comforting during this time of distress. A bowl of soup and home-made bread, what could be better? The Finnish 'scones' or 'tea bread', as we call them, is the simplest bread to make. There is no yeast, no kneading and you can get fresh bread from start to finish in less than 30 minutes.

Capsicum soup
(Serves 2)

2 red capsicums (bell peppers)
100g day-old sour dough bread
1 heaped tbsp almond meal
2 cups vegetable stock (less if you want it thicker)
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat your oven to 225C. Place the capsicums on a roasting tray and roast for 15 minutes or until the skin has slightly blacken. Remove from the oven and place the capsicums in a plastic bag. Leave to cool, then peel the skins off. Place all ingredients in a food processor or in a blender and blitz until smooth. Serve warm or cold with the Finnish scones.

Finnish scones 
(Makes 2)

180g wholemeal spelt flour
1,5 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
150ml water
1 tbsp olive oil

Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Pour in the water and the oil and mix until smooth. Divide the dough into two. Place the dough on a baking tray lined with baking paper and pat into 1 cm disks. Using a knife, cut each disk into 4 sections (you don't need to cut all the way to the bottom). Bake in 225C for 15 minutes. Serve warm.

Enjoy life.


  1. Wise words. It's been truly heartbreaking to watch the footage coming out of Japan. So much tragedy, it must feel like a hopeless situation for so many right now.

    Fantastic soup recipe, and a beautiful colour to cheer you up too :)

  2. love how simple the bread is. I've always felt discouraged to make bread as most recipes call for hours of rising. Not sure if I can find wholemeal spelt flour in Vietnam though. Any substitute?

  3. Hi!
    I´m a swedish student living here in sydney. Since you have lived here a little bit longer than me I wonder if you have an tips about swedish/ scandinavian restaurants? I´m going to take my boyfriend out to thank him for all he have done for me here so I would be so happy if you could help me out!

  4. maria, my jonas would love those scones.

    to anon re scandinavian restaurants, there's not much we've found besides a danish restaurant in enmore that seems to have more of the german-danish food than the nordic-danish food, if you know what i mean.

    how about sven's viking pizza? it sounds silly, but it truly is a swedish experience with all that kebab sauce and pizza salad :)

  5. A very healthy and nutrients well balanced meal! The soup looks so soothing and delicious.

  6. So true Maria. We should all enjoy life. It's just too precious not to.

  7. A delightful meal! I really like those finnish scones.



  8. Eilen aamulla oli kyllä surullista lukea Japanin maanjäristystragediasta.Se tuo myös mieleen,että itsekin asun sellaisella alueella,jossa voi milloin tahansa tapahtua suuri järistys (viimeinen suuri ja tuhoisa sellainen täällä oli v.1927...)
    Ihana paahdettu paprikakeitto;olen myös sitä tehnyt välillä ,mutta tuo mantelijauhon lisäys varmaankin tekee siitä vielä paremman:) Ja teeleipäsi näyttävät ihanilta!

  9. My brother lives is Sendai,which is one of the worst hit area. He is fine, but is still taking refugee at an evacuation centre. ALl my prayers go to Japan to remain strong.

  10. Thank you all for your comments!

    Chi Anh: You can substitute spelt flour with normal wholemeal flour.

    Anon: There is 'The Gourmet Viking' (Danish food), Sven's Pizza and the Swedish Church (obviously not a restaurant, but serves authentic Swedish food). Or you could treat your bf with a home cooked Swedish meal instead ;-) Hope this helps!


  11. Hello I just found your blog and I agree with you completely about enjoying life. I have friends in Japan. Luckily, they all are fine.

  12. Oh this looks delicious! I love all your photos!

  13. Totally agree with you. Though it's sad that horrifying disasters such as this remind us take stock and live each day to the fullest. But in a way, it's a good thing that it does.

    Love these scones. Can you eat them with anything or by themselves?

  14. I'm so relieved to hear that yours and Michaels families are safe... it's such a huge tragedy :(

    The scones look great, don't think I've had them before not even from Panu's family so I might have to try it one day!

  15. Homemade soup and homemade bread are definitely comfort foods indeed. I really like how simple these recipes are!

  16. I know how you fell. I also have some great friends over in Japan.

    This is a lovely soup. This is some something to my no-cream creamy soup. I bookmark the recipe.

  17. Ah, I thought this was going to be your caraway bread! Luckily I'm not too disappointed, as I do love no-yeast breads :)

    I'm so glad to hear the people you know in Japan are safe. Luckily my friend over there is safe too, but it's still so hard to know that so many people aren't.

  18. Such gorgeous color for that soup, it sounds wonderful, perfect with those delicious scones!

  19. The devastation over in Japan really is sad. I'm glad you managed to find some comfort in this lovely meal. x

  20. The soup looks fresh & delicious and bread in 30 minutes....what could be better?

  21. Mmm such a vibrant soup! And fresh bread in less than 30 minutes? Yes please!

  22. Maria, glad to hear that your relatives are safe and sound in japan. Again, this is a interesting dish for me... I believe this is the first time I have come across a capsicum soup... Would love to try this with a pinch of heat- chilli powder.

  23. learning to appreciate life is one of the few silver linings that come out of tragedies like this. The whole ordeal made me crave comfort food as well, and this soup looks just perfect.

  24. Hi Maria, I have read through your latest posts; this soup, the grilled watermelon, your apple muffins... they are all amazing! Great recipes, and your photos are getting better and better for each post. So impressive!
    I'd love to try the soup, but what I really long for is some finnish spelt tea bread. I have always loved those.

    Ps. It's so true what you wrote about appreciating life when disasters like this happens.

  25. Glad to hear that your relatives are safe.

    And it is not an unhealthy obsession at all to enjoy every day of life to the fullest! I am trying to improve on that.

  26. It's quite devastating here in Japan, I've never been so scared in my life.

  27. Glad to hear your friends and family are safe. I must try your whole-grain Finnish scones - they look so hearty! Perfect with the vibrantly colored soup.

  28. This looks delicious! I love all your photos!

  29. Hi there! I made the soup and bread for lunch the other day and it was a hit in my family! Very delicious and easy to prepare.


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