This festival brings people outdoors and today - first of May - you would see many Finns enjoying picnics in the parks and outdoor areas. There are also the Socialist traditions connected to this day - you may see some political agitations held, but overall today is about celebrating spring and the summer months to come.
Since vappu is a carnival, the food served is also quite festive. Sima, a home-made non-alcoholic mead is enjoyed with typical vappu doughnuts and funnel cakes. At the first of May picnic you could be served open herring sandwiches, potato salad and other savoury dishes flushed down with sparkling wine or cider.
Walpurgis night doughnuts
(makes 15 small)
210g gluten-free plain flour*
35g natural brown sugar
1,5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
pinch of salt
1 large free-range egg
2 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil, melted
natural raw vanilla sugar, for coating
* I used Orgran brand plain flour that is a mix of maize starch, tapioca flour and rice flour.
1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a roasting tray with baking paper.
2. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, cardamom and salt in a bowl.
3. Stir in the water, egg and coconut oil (can substitute with vegetable oil or melted butter). Stir to make a smooth but sticky dough.
4. Using your hands, roll the dough into 15 small balls and coat each ball with vanilla sugar. Place the balls on a roasting tray and bake for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm.