This time last week I was writing to you from Venice after eating all the risotto and drinking all of the espressos in Milan. I had exactly eight hours to come home, swap suitcases before heading to Helsinki for a quick work trip. After Italy, Finland seemed so quiet and calm. It's the third time that I've been there for work and each time I go, I love it more.
Finnish cooking is so informed by their neighbours of Russia and Sweden but it is entirely it's own. From blueberry pie to salmon soup and plenty of smoked fish and cured meat, I ate so well. I've added spending a few hours in a traditional smoke sauna, swimming in the ice-cold sea and then wrapping myself up in cashmere and a coat and walking to a beloved restaurant to my top five feelings list. I was alone most of the time and after a busy month, it was heaven to just have myself for company. Nights in silky hotel sheets watching comfort films like Julie and Julia while eating a mixed bag of Finnish sweets and mornings listening to music and wandering around Helsinki's antique shops really reset my brain.
November is arriving and with it lots of exciting new things including a new job, watching this on repeat and topping up the whiskey on a jar of fruit for my Christmas cake. Something Helsinki-inspired is coming next week so stay tuned for that and some other surprises. Also, my interview with The Spoken Woman Podcast is out now and you can listen to it here. I talk to the lovely Zoe about everything from cooking and ingredient inspiration to writing and this newsletter of course.
Thank you as always for reading, for writing to me and for sending me photos of the recipes you recreate, I appreciate you all more than you could ever know.