I love fish. I love tons of dishes with tons of different kinds of fish. And I love soup! But I could never be so much fond of fish soup. For some reason, the idea of fish in a lot of liquid did not appeal to me (although they come from tons of liquid!). Until I met Finnish salmon soup…
Lohikeitto, aka salmon soup in Finnish, is perhaps the best thing that comes out of Finnish cuisine. It is hearty and nutritious, and it is also very light and rich in taste. And an added bonus: it is so easy to make!
I fell in love with this soup in Cafe Engel in Senaatintori in Helsinki. At some point I was so addicted to it that I ate it all the time! I like to eat it especially at Engel because there they do not add dill while cooking but in the end. So I can always ask them not to put dill!! Which is great for me, because I hate dill!
If you look at traditional Finnish salmon soup recipes, you will see some variations. Some people say that it absolutely has to include leeks, some add cream instead of milk in my recipe, some add carrots. So the “tradition” has different applications as always, but i’d say my version is Cafe Engel’s traditional version!
So, if you want to have a hearty soup for instance for lunch these days, give this delicious salmon soup a try and yell “perinteinen lohikeitto!” (traditional salmon soup).
Difficulty: ★☆☆ (Easy)
1 tbsp butter (or olive oil, if you prefer)
1 onion, diced
6 potatoes, peeled and cut in big cubes
500 gr. salmon (no skin), cut in cubes (not too small cubes)
1 lt fish broth (or 1 lt water and 1 fish stock cube, but I do not like those stock cubes..)
4-5 bay leaves
200 ml milk (you can use cream instead of milk if you make it creamier)
pinch of salt
pinch of black pepper
pinch of allspice (maustepippuri in Finnish)
a few sprigs of dill (for me, this is “eewwwwwww!”)
1. In a medium pot, put butter (or olive oil) and onion. Saute the onion until it is translucent.
2. Add potato, stir a bit, then add warm water just enough to cover the potatoes.
3. Set the heat to medium high, cover the lid of the pot and cook potatoes until they start getting soft, but not too soft.
4. Add salmon, stir.
5. Add fish broth and bay leaves, stir and let salmon cubes cook – it will be quite quick, about 5 minutes.
6. Once salmon is cooked, add milk (or cream), salt and spices and stir. Be careful and do not crush the soft, cooked potatoes and salmon while stirring. Once it is well mixed, take out of the heat and let it rest for 10 minutes before serving. Add fresh dill on the plates if you want to, if you absolutely have to, if you must do such a thing… Enjoy!