There’s no better way to enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner in Hossa National Park, than by picking it or catching it and cooking it yourself over an open flame.
This isn’t just a fun way to enjoy your wilderness meals while you’re visiting, it’s actually quite a common practice for locals as well – heavily part of the Finland food culture.
Around 60% of locals actually pick forest berries as a hobby and they sell around 20 million kilos to local grocers and for foreign trade. Why? Because it’s a fun hobby for the family, and local herbs, berries and mushrooms offer excellent health benefits. Best of both worlds!
Check out our video highlighting the best of slow travel in Hossa National Park:
You can take a look at just a few of the delicious local meals we tried out (fresh from the forest grounds and lakes) in this photo guide and/or make a few notes for yourself from this list of delicious and common berries, mushrooms, fish and meat found in the Hossa area.
We had the incredible opportunity to stop in at the Vanha Kurimo Restaurant in Suomassalmi along the way to Hossa National Park (from Kajaani Airport) to try the best of the ingredients that come from the local land. Many of these delicious photos are from our first lunch at Vanha Kurimo. If you’re interested in making a stop there yourself, check out their website and give them a call. The restaurant is not open daily but can be booked for special occasions.
Finland Food Culture – Foraging for your food
Common Edible Herbs Found in Hossa National Park, Finland
- Rosebay willow-herb
- Birch buds and leaves
- Spruce tips
- Lady’s mantel
Common Edible Berries Found in Hossa National Park, Finland
- Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus)
- Cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus)
- Lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea)
- Crowberry (Empertrum nigrum, E. hermaphroditum)
- Rowanberry (Sorbus aucuparia)
- Cranberry (Vaccinium oxycoccos, V. microcarpum)
Common Edible Mushrooms Found in Hossa National Park, Finland
- Boletus mushrooms (Boletus edulis)
- Russulas mushrooms
- Woolly milk-cap mushrooms (Lactarius torminosus)
- Rufoud milk-cap mushrooms (Lactarius rufus)
- Copper brittle gill mushrooms (Russell decolorans)
- Chanterelle mushrooms (Cantharellus cibarius)
- Trumpet chanterelle mushrooms (Cantharellus tubaeformis)
- Sheep polymore mushrooms (Albatrellus ovinus)
Common Fish Found in Hossa National Park
- Northern pike
- Brown trout
- River trout
If you’re looking for some hardy reindeer soup or moose burgers, you can try out your luck finding a hunt to join or visiting a local restaurant like the farmhouse at the Hossa Reindeer Farm who serves up a mouth-watering reindeer and potato soup. Another part of Finland food culture!
Want to learn more about the edible forest in Hossa National Park? Check out www.arctic-flavours.fi. While you’re all it, explore the different Hossa National Park accommodation available along with our Hossa National Park itinerary for 7 days.