Making piirakkas in Hancock

With Heikinpaiva just around the corner in the Copper Country, there are many events coming up having to do with Finnish heritage.

At Zion Lutheran Church in Hancock, the Finnish Theme Committee held enrichment classes Monday to educate people on the culture and customs of Finnish heritage.

The class teaches people how to make piirakkas, small pastries with a rice pudding filling.  It is a meticulous process which involves rolling the dough, topping it with rice pudding and pinching it together into a distinct shape.

After a few minutes in the oven, you have a delicious treat that can be topped with a mixture of chopped eggs and butter.

Finnish Theme Committee member Debbie Kurtti said the classes are unique because they attract people from all cultures.

“Finns and non-Finns can come to these classes and learn to make something new.  They can learn how to make something their grandparents talked about,” she said.

“One of the ladies cooking today is bring one to her mother at the nursing home after she leaves here.  It’s tradition and keeping the Finnish tradition alive and we also try out new Finnish recipes through the years and we have a lot of fun doing it.  We meet new people and make new friends.”

Most of the Finnish recipes are available online.  More information on these classes will be available at the Heikkinpaiva festivities this Saturday.

For a list of the events taking place, click here.