The Crispiest Bit of Finland

I wrote a posting about Rye last year and anticipated that Linkosuo will launch a range of organic flavoured Rye Crisps or Chips. Now it has happened in Germany rc_sauerrahmthrough the wholesaler Dennree. If you happen to be in Germany you can look for the Linkosuo Rye Crisps in organic supermarkets – the best bet probably is the Denns Biomarkt chain of stores.

You have the choice between Tomato, Sour-Cream-Onion and Garlic – or even better – take them all. You can grab a bag and eat them as they are or try adding some dip. The good thing is that they are much more healthy than chips and snacks usually are with organic wholemeal rye, 13% fibre and only 9% fat content.rc_tomate

Now that the products have been developed and launched on one market we are looking at taking the next steps in terms of opening other markets. I will keep you posted.

In addition to these flavored snack products Linkosuo has launched also unflavoured variants on the Finnish market – with 100 % organic wholemeal rye and also with a bit of wheat to soften the bite.

Enjoy the Rye!

Linkosuo Organic Rye Crisps brochure

rc_knoblauch

 

Linkosuo Rye Crisps

The story about Linkosuo Rye Crisps is a story about Rye, how traditional Finnish bread adapted to modern times and the history of the family owned Linkosuo bakery company.

Organic rye in Karjalohja, Finland

20110814-vilppula-15889

Traditional Rye Sour Bread drying on a pole at Peltolan Organic Farm in Vilppula, Finland.

Rye of course is the healthiest grain used for baking bread. The history of rye in Finland goes back over 2000 years and it was the predominant grain in Finland through the middle ages (replacing barley) until the early 20th century. Still a major part of bread in Finland is rye bread. The archetypes of rye bread is the “reikäleipä” or the round hole sour bread and the round sour rye bread “ruisleipä” with a simple recipe: rye, water, salt. So this is a sour bread with 100% wholemeal rye flour – no wheat and no yeast. The hole bread has the hole because in the old times the bread was hung on poles to dry close to the ceiling of the house. Western Finnish tradition stressed rare baking sessions combined with long-term storage. Of course the dry bread would be too hard to bite but it would be soaked in soups or milk. Nowadays with commercial bakeries baking fresh bread every day this tradition has largely disappeared.

20110910-espoo-16479

Linkosuo Rye Crisps in different sizes.

20110910-espoo-16456

Linkosuo Rye Chip with traditional organic Finnish "Bread-Cheese" and organic rucola..

20110910-espoo-16464

Linkosuo Rye Buttons with cheese, sour cucumber and paprika. All organic.

Linkosuo was the first to adapt the dry rye bread to commercial baking. The first version was just a thinner version of the traditional hole bread. It is not produced anymore because the bite was far too hard – even for Finnish teeth. The breakthrough innovation was to tear the upper part and bottom of the bread apart before drying resulting in a thinner and crispier dry bread known as “Varrasleipä”. Varrasleipä has been hugely popular in Finland for decades.

Finland, as the rest of the Western world, has developed a taste of snacking and this challenge was met by developing the hole of the traditional bread into a “Rye Button”. The Button could easily be used at home or f.ex. at parties as a kind of delicious cocktail snack by just putting butter, cheese, cutleries, vegetables etc on the Rye button.

The most recent modernization of the Rye Crisp was to develop it into a real snack – ready to eat as it is. This was achieved by adding some wheat to the dough to make the Rye Chips bite easier and crumblier and to flavor them. The non-organic range of flavored Rye Chips is already on the market in Finland but also the flavored organic Rye Chips range are in the pipeline. We have already tasted them and they are delicious! But the pure rye version “Aito Ruis” might still be the best. So keep posted and I will let you know as soon as they are available.

You can also already get Finnish Ruis – the fresh bread – in New York. Visit www.nordicbreads.com to see how two Finnish brothers bake real organic Finnish Rye Bread or Ruis Bread in Queens.

For more information about how healthy rye is visit:

The Rye info site of VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland 

and

About Rye and Health