Beetroot and Pea Loaf ‒ Punajuuri-hernemureke

We usually spend the Yule eve at my spouse's mum since his siblings gather there as well and then go to see my parents on the Yule day. We don't buy much gifts but think it's nice to bring something special for the dinner table. Knowing his family, my spouse convinced me we should make them a seitan roast, along these lines. After all, the only hardcore carnivore on the table was his big brother, the chair of the local hunting club, but even he hadn't eaten pig for a year. And to my surprise, instead of thinking seitan as a fake ham they seemed to like it, even though I myself thought there was too much spices and the experiment with rye flour had made the structure rather sandy.

My parents on the other hand have a history of being much harder to please. I'd like to think they've stopped mocking my vegetarianism cause they now realize I'm a responsible grown-up and have started enjoying my dishes since I've become a better cook but actually, think the change happened when I dragged home a 34-year old, hairy, oveweight and loud guy who refused to eat meat. The power of example is amazing. Still, for them, I thought the beetroot and pea loaf from the book Härkäpapua sarvista (Irina Somersalo & al., Multikustannus 2007) would be a safer option.

Last time I tried something like this was a fiasco (lacking of taste and crumbling apart) so this time I wanted to follow a recipe rather faithfully. The medley of different herbs is naturally very dominant, and since there are so many of them you can't really put your finger on any specific one. Somehow I thought they made the loaf taste more like summer than Yule but liked the result anyway. It doesn't make a centerpiece for a dinner table but it's a good sidekick on the fancier side.

Pea layer:
- 1 dl crushed peas (or 3 dl cooked peas)
- 3 dl water
- 2 potatoes
- 0.5 dl buckwheat flour
- 2 teaspoons dried marjoram
- 0.5 teaspoon ground coriander
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 teaspoon herb salt

Beetroot layer:
- 2 large beetroots
- 1 potato
- 0.5 dl buckwheat flour
- 1 onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 0.5 teaspoon dried sage
- 3 teaspoon parsley
- 0.25 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon herb salt

Cook the peas with the two potatoes in scarce amount of water. Let them cool down. Then mash and mix with the other ingredients of the pea layer. Cook the beetroots with the potato (again, with minimum amount of water so you won't have to waste any taste into the sewer). Cool down as well. Mash them smooth with the rest of the beetroot layer ingredients (you can either smooth down the onion in a blender or such like the rest or just chop crunchy pieces out of it).

Butter a mold. Pour in the pea layer and spread it even. Pour the beetroot layer on the pea layer and spread even as well. Cook 40 minutes in a 200°C oven in a water bath (this can be achieved by placing the mold into a larger casserole where you pour some water).

Serve cold. Enjoy with some perky sauce or slice on crackers.

Nutritional values / 1055 g:
energy 771 kcal
fat 2 g
protein 33 g
carbohydrates 149 g
fiber 24 g


  1. Hello Mammi,
    I stumbled upon your Finnish beer soup recipe and decided to give it a try.actually I have my own recipe as well.
    It was delicious the only thing that was missing is real Finnish Bread!I will be in New York City trying to locate some but I know it will not be the same. hope you like it!

  2. Your version sounds really good as well. Recently I made a hot drink with porter and noticed that ginger fits it well. Also, I would assume that using old, dry bred pieces has to be the earliest form of beer soup altogether.
    And hey, if you can't find any Finnish bread in NYC, try baking your own. All it really takes is rye flour and waiting.


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