Monday, March 27, 2017

Binge Blog #2: Salmiakki

Facebook Status, Feb. 7:
My name is Rachel and I'm addicted to Salmiakki

I know in my last post I said that people are Finland's most valuable resource...but I beg to differ.  I'm pretty sure salmiakki is Finland's most valuable resource.  What is salmiakki, you ask?  Here's what wikipedia has to say about that:

Salty liquorice, also known as salmiak or salmiakki (in Finland), is a variety of liquorice flavoured with ammonium chloride, common in the Nordic countries, the Netherlands, and northern Germany.[1] Ammonium chloride gives salty liquorice an astringent, salty taste[2] (hence the name), which has been described as "tongue-numbing"[3] and "almost-stinging".[1] Salty liquorice is an acquired taste[1] and people not familiar with ammonium chloride might find the taste physically overwhelming and unlikeable.[4][1] Salty liquorice candies are almost always black or very dark brown and can range from very soft to very hard and may be brittle. The other colours used are white and variants of grey. Salty liquorice is also used as a flavouring in other products, such as ice creams and alcoholic beverages.


I have never been a fan of black licorice, but Salmiakki is not black licorice.  It is similar, but not the same.  The first time I tried it here, I was hooked!  Full disclosure, some of it is actually pretty disgusting, but the stuff that is good is SOOOOOO good!  Here are some of my favorites:

Image result for salmiakki fruit candy
I've eaten a lot of these bags...

Mmmm...crunchy filling inside the soft candy.

Image result for salmiakki fruit candy
Salmiakki comes in all kinds of fun shapes and flavor combos.
See that one in the middle with the pink filling?
That's my favorite.  MY FAVORITE!!!!!!

Then there's Salmiakki liquor.  I LOVE this stuff too!  I was introduced to this drink by a bunch of college musicians at a bar.  As we were waiting to be served the conversation went something like this:

Them: You have to try it.  It's awful.  All Finn's drink this, but it tastes terrible.  You have to drink it all in one shot.  And you aren't allowed to make any bad faces.  It's terrible.

Me after taking the shot:  I like that!

Them:  Yeah, it's actually pretty good!

Kippis! (That means cheers!)

A funny memory from the same night I was introduced to Salmiakki:
Facebook Status, Feb 3:
This afternoon one of the singers in the choir I'm working with invited me to her show tonight. She goes to the music high school in town and this show was a school performance. I asked her if I could bring my family and she said probably not because it was at a bar and all of her teachers would be there drinking. When I got there it was indeed a bar, and the teachers there were actually guidance counselors from all over Finland who were attending a three-day professional development conference.
So there I stood, drinking a glass of wine, as a band of high school students (who were very good, by the way) performed for a bunch of teachers who were drinking and dancing. They closed their set with "Sex Bomb."
All I could think was, "this would never happen in America." And, "why is no one here to witness this moment with me?"

Although I love salmiakki with all my heart, I recommend staying away from the Salmiakki McFlurry.  It is no good.  Trust me on this one.

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