Pancake party, 2013
Picture: Raudaskoski Petra, Historical Picture Collection, Finnish Heritage Agency
I moved to Finland for my studies. I remember how I would have lunch in the canteen of the university. Pea soup was always served on Thursdays. That kind of continuity delighted me. They also served blinis on Thursdays, also regularly. But I didn’t immediately realise they were blinis, because to us who are from Russia they looked strange: square-shaped pieces cut from baked dough on a baking sheet. Pancakes in Finnish. At first glance, they looked delicious to me. I approached in the queue carrying my tray and asked the cashier, “What are these?” He looked at me amazed and said, “What do you mean? They are blinis.” My own reaction was similar: “Blinis ?!”. We were both confused. Today, I understand his amazement, but at the time I thought, “Well fine, they are blinis.” (laughs).