A journey into Indian cuisine

spiceWhile many airlines are cutting back on their meal service, we at Finnair consider that tasty in-flight meals provide competitive edge. The opening of each long-haul route has presented a new challenge to Finnair Catering. Starting with the correct way to boil rice, Finnair’s chefs have conjured new skills with every Asian destination.

National cuisine is a culturally sacred issue, and with the assistance of local experts, Finnair’s chefs have become dedicated experts in the secrets of Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Korean as well as Thai cuisine.

Finnair’s Chef Juha Stenholm is pleased to share recipes for some of the summer delicacies that have been served on our flights to Delhi. Spicy food can be a challenging companion to wine, so Finnair Catering wine guru Magnus Hannukainen helps you make a tasty choice.

Indian lamb kebab
350 g of ground mutton (minced beef can also be used)
Half an onion
1 tbs finely chopped ginger
3 garlic cloves
1 small fresh chili
1 tbs crushed cashew nut
1 tbs vegetable oil
½ ts ground white pepper
1 ts salt
1 ts garam masala spice mix
50 g home-made cheese
1 raw egg
2 coriander leaves
Barbecue skewers
• Soak the skewers in water for about an hour
• Dice the chili, ginger, cheese and onions
• Shred the coriander leaves
• Mix the ingredients by hand and knead into a dough; then refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to develop
• Mold into 50-gram sausage shapes and thread on to skewers
• Barbecue or bake in a 200-degree oven for approximately 10 minutes

Chicken Tikka
3 boneless chicken breasts
4 tbs lime juice
4 tbs finely chopped ginger
4 tbs finely chopped garlic
1 ts ground chili
1 ts salt
1 ts jeera (cumin)
1 ts ground white pepper
1 ts cardamom
1 ts garam masala spice mix
50 g plain yoghurt (preferably Greek or Turkish)
• Cut the chicken breasts into three pieces
• Mix the marinade ingredients
• Put the chicken pieces in the marinade and leave in the refrigerator overnight
• Put the marinated chicken pieces on a baking tray or casserole dish and bake in the oven at 220 degrees for 10 minutes
• You can barbecue the chicken instead, but then wipe the marinade off first
• Make a fresh green salad as the perfect side dish

Cold mint Raita
300 g plain yoghurt (preferably Greek or Turkish)
1 ts finely chopped ginger
Half a bunch of fresh mint
½ ts finely chopped chili
1 ts salt
3 tbs lime juice
5 branches of coriander
1 ts garam masala spice mix
• Put all ingredients, except the yoghurt, into a blender and grind into a fine paste
• Mix the paste into the yoghurt and serve chilled

Summer wine choice
Magnus Hannukainen picked two wines which are excellent value for money, and suitable for barbecued dishes. In Finland they are available in the Alko selection.

Bixio Valpolicella classico
Bixio has produced wines in the vicinity of Lake Garda since 1866. This wine is a traditional Valpolicella, made from Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara grapes, which are typical to wines of this area. The wine is fermented for 6 months in caskets made from French oak and Italian cherry wood.

Bixio is medium-bodied, slightly spicy and moderately oaky. This wine offers great value for money, as it is fully comparable with other Valpolicella wines, which usually cost around 12 euros.

Bixio is the perfect companion to various barbecued dishes, pasta and cheese.
(Alko product no. 426487; price 8.66 €)

Cycles Gladiator
This wine comes from California and represents American wine-making at its best. It is full-bodied, and abundant with the flavor of dark berries. The after taste is oaky but soft, with a hint of vanilla. The wine is made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot and Petite Sirah grapes, and aged in oak caskets for 18 months. Cycles Gladiator is an excellent companion to Finnish barbecue culture, as it can support different kinds of flavors without being too overpowering.
(Alko product no. 438707; price 10.03 €)