26 The Karelian Treat: “Kalitki”

The Karelian Treat: “Kalitki”

Posted on July 21, 2010 by team


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Kalitki are tiny Karelian pasties made of unfermented dough with rye flour. They are usually served with tea and baked with different filling: millet, potato, cottage cheese, oat flour, barley...


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Karelians also call them "ryupittetyu" that means "puckered" as they actually look like.

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The fact that they are made of unfermented dough definitely means that they were baked long before the Conversion of Russia, apparently they appeared in the IX century and maybe even earlier.

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However, despite their long history, they have been actually made only in Karelia. Their recipe has never inspired Russians who believe that pastries always should be fresh, puffy, smelling sweet. And kalitki are made of plain rye flour, filled with pearl barley and after baking they become hard as iron and are to be softened again.

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26 Responses to “The Karelian Treat: “Kalitki””

  1. muzzer says:

    doesn`t look tasty. would give it a go though. 2nd?

  2. yummyyy says:

    Karelian pie is the best. We love it here in finland!

  3. ddr says:

    its better than burger king

  4. Maraudon says:

    Looks yammers! g1ef plz?

  5. Testicules says:

    Barf!

  6. sid says:

    make´m hungry

  7. xoxo says:

    some of them look pretty good.

  8. Andrew says:

    humm… I go to make

  9. Orange_you_tang says:

    I thought this was English Russia, not English Finland … oh I forget, you pinkos stole Karelia from Finland.
    You should have stood up and fought us instead of running off to Germany. Cowards.

    • Anatoley says:

      I like your comment. More importantly I adore the fact that the local culture has prevailed under such a long hegemony!!!!

      • silvertwinz says:

        that’s the 100 ruble word of the day–“hegemony” :-D

      • kingkong says:

        I can guarantee that they did, and thats why they wanted to be part of finland when the wars started, thats why they aided finland in the war and thats why hundreds of thousands of people moved away from karelia (to finland) once the russians occupied it.

    • Dakkus says:

      Hey, come on. I don’t know where you’re from, but if you had been to school in Finland, you ought to know that some half of Karelia was never a part of Finland, not even the autonomous Finnish grand duchy under Russia.

      Of course the Russians have generally not been in the area very long and could be considered to be “intruders” in the area constituting some half Russia. But that was some half a millenium ago, so I don’t quite see the point in crying about that any more.
      And if we do want to complain of the Russians appearing some 400-700 years ago to what is now considered the bulk of Russia, why not also complain about the fact that the whole Finland used to be inhabited by Sami people until the Finns came some thousands of years ago from what’s now Russian territory, kicked their asses and forced them to Lapland?
      Also, as one can hear in the attached song, karelian is already quite a bit a language and culture of its own, not just a part of Finland. “Kylyseen”?! In Finnish they would say “Kylään”, if I even guess the meaning of the word correctly.. The Karelians that resided in the old Finnish area were strongly absorbed to the mainstream Finnish culture and didn’t really speak much like these Karelians. Also many other Karelian cultural aspects were replaced by something Finnish.

      Most of the things shown in the blog entry are purely Karelian, not Finnish or Russian. It would be just as correct or incorrect calling them Finnish as it is to call them Russian. Taking into account that they do not exist and probably never did exist on the territory of Finland and do exist on the territory of Russia, it even seems to make more sense calling them Russian than Finnish, if a UN recognized state really has to be attached to the culture.

  10. OLUT says:

    OMG nomnomnom!! The fruit ones are calling my name!

  11. I am hungry looking at them :)

    Soendoro Soetanto

  12. dreamingofKarelia says:

    More subjects on Karelia please.

  13. Mel says:

    I looks yummy :D

  14. falseter says:

    looks delicious,

  15. calahan says:

    I like the ones with berries. Good stuff. I need to visit.

  16. fikamar says:

    hmm I will make it. maybe the appearance is little bad, but I think the taste is more important than appearance

  17. Tiksa says:

    I’m a Finn but my grandmother was from Sortavala which is now in the Russian side of the Karelia. And I’ve made these pies many times. And I think that a better recipe for these is:

    Dough:
    3 parts of water
    4 parts of rye flour
    2 parts of wheat flour
    salt

    Filling can be rice or barley porridge or mashed potatoes or something else like that. They use berries in the northern part of the Karelia and it’s also good.

    If you use 300 ml water, you should get something like 40-50 pies. If you’ve got really good and fresh rye flour (which is quite rare thing to find in Finland) you can use only rye flour and you’ll get better pies. If the dough sticks to everything and it’s impossible to handle it, you should add some wheat flour.

    Cut the dough to small pieces and use your rolling pin and make round flat pieces from the dough. They should be as thin as you’re able to do. The thinner the better and not like the ones you can buy from Finnish shops.

    Add the filling (not too much) and turn two opposite edges in to create the oval shape (it should look like women’s genitals :)

    Bake in a hot oven (200-250 degrees Celcius) until the pies are nicely brown. Then use a brush and coat the pies with melted butter and cover the pies with paper or folio so they’ll soften a bit.

    Cook some eggs (hard boiled), cut them to small pieces, add same amount of soft butter and mix them. Before eating put the egg/butter mix on the pie (especially pie with rice porridge, doesn’t work with the berry ones). Enjoy!

  18. Missy says:

    They’re from Finland, not Russia! Russia stole Karjalan area from Finland! :(

  19. Kenneth says:

    My mother escaped from Vyborg/Karelia in 30,s and i have eaten this warm “riisipirakka” whit butter. Very good and still your hunger fast.
    Kenneth from Sweden

  20. juuso says:

    “Karjalanpiirakka” in Finnish language. Very tasty!

  21. Mister Twister says:

    I read about them. These are from Finland, but russians living in the region learned from the locals.

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