Taste the Waste
November 7, 2010, 1:01 pm
Filed under: 5/5, Bread, Food, Production, Recycling | Tags: , , , , ,

We throw away 50 % of the food that is produced. Yes, fifty percent! 500.000 tons of bread is thrown away yearly in Germany. Since bread has the same heating value as wood, we could spare one nuclear power plant if industry would make use of that fact. The food, that is thrown away in Europe, would be enough to feed the world’s starving population not only once, no, twice! For the production of the ‘trash bread’, an area of 200.000 hectar would be needed and as much greenhouse gases blown in the atmosphere as 300.000 cars would emit. A reduction of the trash to only half of its amount would mean a 10 % reduction of greenhouse gases – as if every second car would be erased from our streets. (Source: http://tastethewaste.com/media/file/ARD_Frisch_auf_den_Muell_PM.pdf)

Valentin Thurn’s recent documentary ‘Frisch auf den Müll- Die globale Lebensmittelverschwendung’ was shown Oct. 20 th 2010 on the German public TV channel Das Erste (at 11:30 pm – what kind of screening time is that for such a relevant interesting topic??). Anyway, thanks to the internet and livestreaming, you can watch the video in three parts on Youtube, unfortunately, it is only in German, but they are also going to screen English versions under the title ‘Taste the Waste’ internationally, if I understood right.

The movie has its own website in English and German, where you can find articles and more information and can also take action by spreading the word and uploading own articles and experiences.


October 29, 2010, 7:26 am
Filed under: Design, Food, Production, Theories | Tags: , , , , , ,

Fuji Eco Park Village, Japan, by Cecilia Macaulay

Last night, I attended a lecture about Permaculture at the Hub Helsinki. My mind is blasted. Jerome Osentowski, director of the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute, was speaker of the night. It got me really interested in learning more about Permaculture, which is a whole philosophy including social, economical, technological, cultural, educational, political and spiritual aspects. Basically, it is a concept about a self-sustained life, independent from governments and states, in accord with nature. The term comes from the two words ‘permanent’ and ‘agriculture’, and “aims to design human settlements and agricultural systems that mimic nature”, Osentowski presented in his lecture. Three basic ethics lead Permaculture: care for the earth, care for the people, and sharing the surplus. From the website www.permacultureprinciples.com, you can find very nice and clear descriptions of the principles, presented in the permaculture flower diagram, which are explained more nearly when clicking on them. Those Ecovillages are like small Utopian realities with a holistic philosophy, that I agree with in many aspects. I would only be careful with a too large body of rules and regulations that need to be followed.

In the discussion after the lecture, the question was raised whether is was possible to use only vegan fertilizers, forgoing animal manures, since Osentowski is making use of the rabbits’ and chicken’s dirt for the plants. I was wondering what could be wrong with using animal excrement, and found an answer of sorts in the internet: Using animal manures would support the meat and dairy industries. But if one raises the animals himself and does not make use of any other products but their dirt? Food philosophy at its best, source of discussion and thoughts; I am seriously troubled.

Here an interesting article about Masanobu Fukuoka’s, a Japanese farmer, philosophy, whose agricultural approach is recommended on the Permaculture website. Another interesting aspect are the alternative economic models proposed and encouraged, such as volunteer work, trading without money, and concepts such as WWOOFing (which I plan on doing next year – I hope to find answers to all my questions!).

2/5 in the installation process
September 21, 2010, 12:01 pm
Filed under: Art, Bread, Design, Handicraft | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Slowly but surely, the installation is growing. Today, I added a bread sky made from reikäleipä (Finnish hole-bread) that was baked in June 2010 in the traditional Avikainen bakery in Kallio with a group of volunteer fellow students and friends. Also, there is a slow movie to be seen, showing the baking process. People still come by and continue their last night’s stitchings, and new ones are added by some of today’s passersbys.

The movie will be uploaded soon (as soon as I figure out how to do it).

Tomorrow is sewing and sowing day!

Archie meets Simon
August 22, 2010, 8:56 pm
Filed under: Good to know, Helsinki, Making of, Network, Press, Workshop | Tags: , , , ,

Check this out, a feature article on Simon’s clayoven blog about Archie and the project! Once more: hurray to the internet!


day 2 – sun/sand/bricks/circles/coffee/music/1-min-decisions/2-min-reactions/thunderstorms/rain dance/container parties/tea/candles/warm food/sleep!

If you want to have a most wonderful weekend full of fun and surprises, I can recommend: build a cob oven with a group of strangers. You will end up having lots of fun, start to believe in the power of cob ovens to save the world, and make great new friends. I shot about 700 pictures this weekend, so I need to make a bigger gallery, which I will put on a public photo gallery in the net. I will publish the link as soon as it is done. Here just one pic of how the building on Sunday night ended, right on time after finishing the second layer – the thunderstorm Helsinki has been waiting for since the whole summer finally arrived!!! (and the oven survived!) Curious to see more?

free pdf
August 10, 2010, 10:38 am
Filed under: Design, Good to know, Making of, Recipes, Workshop | Tags: , , , ,

What would Simon say? With great inspiration from Simon’s free manual (which you can find from here: http://clayoven.wordpress.com/), I made this 2-page-pdf, easy to print out both-sided on one A4 to support your first oven-building-experience, to share with friends, to understand the basic construction and building steps of a cob oven.

Have fun and spread!!

Cob Oven Manual

Day 1 – simon says.
August 7, 2010, 8:50 pm
Filed under: Bread, Design, Good to know, Helsinki, Making of, Workshop | Tags: , , , , , ,

Hell yeah!

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exciting planning night @ hub
August 4, 2010, 8:31 pm
Filed under: Bread, Design, Helsinki, Network, Workshop | Tags: , , , , , , ,

20 people all together gathered tonight at the Hub in Helsinki city centre to plan the cob oven building at Kalasatama! A big success! First, we all introduced ourselves, most people were from Finland, but we also had some international guests from Norway, Turkey, Scotland, Mexico, and Germany. After a short brainstorm, Tanja showed some pictures from her cob oven building experience at a workshop in Germany. Everyone with some experience shared their stories and knowledge. Then, we divided into three groups (material, tools, design) to get organized, which was great fun because we only had very basic knowledge, but still managed to plan everything. The next two days will be busy with retrieving building material from Helsinki and its suburbs, finding information from the internet (free manuals etc.), and planning the workshop weekend. Stay tuned!

Great links:




Cob oven workshop scheduled!

Good news to all bread, pizza, and oven enthusiasts! Something similar to what you can see on this picture might soon be standing in the middle of Helsinki!

The cob oven-building workshop is finally scheduled and will take place during the first week of August, divided into two phases: the design/ planning phase, and the actual building phase. In between, we will organize and retrieve the materials needed together.
The design phase will be a relaxed meeting at the Hub in the city centre on Wednesday, 4th of August, at 5 pm. Feel free to bring any info ma…terial, photos or stories on oven building with you! We will most probably be joined by some professional oven builders who will share their knowledge, all other information can be retrieved from the Internet. You can bring your own laptop if at hand, otherwise, there are some computers at the Hub we may use. We plan to get all building materials for free, e.g. sand and bricks from construction sites, and clay from nature in the Helsinki area.

The building phase will take place on the weekend of the same week, 7th and 8th of August, at the container square in Kalasatama, starting from 1 pm until later at night. Sunday night, we will celebrate the successful building with drinks and grilling. At the same time, we can start to plan events that involve the use of the oven. Because it needs to dry out for about 2 weeks, we cannot inaugurate it immediately, but keep your second weekend after the building free!

There is no limit of participants for the planning workshop, so welcome to the Hub! To sign up for the building part, please send an email to: saviuunihelsinkiin@gmail.com, even if you registered for it on Public School. At the building site there can be max. 10 participants at the same time.

Dates & places:

1) Planning workshop: 04.08.2010, 5 pm @ Hub Helsinki, Aleksanterinkatu 16-18, 00320 Helsinki
2) Building workshop: 07.+ 08.08.2010, 1 pm – open end @ Kalasatama’s Konttiaukio/ Container square, 00580 Helsinki

Things to bring along:

– water!
– working clothes
– sun protection (sun lotion/hat/etc.)
– energy and enthusiasm :)

Sign up quickly so you can participate! If the workshop is already full, you are still welcome to join us, to watch, discuss, take pictures, film, or just hang out! Any help or interest is welcome!

Contact & registration:


Katharina, Salla & Tanja
Public School Helsinki & Hub Helsinki

Baking workshop @ Avikainen
June 9, 2010, 6:51 pm
Filed under: Bread, Food, Helsinki, Making of, Production, Workshop | Tags: , , , , , ,

Today, the first workshop of the “5” event series took place, at Avikainen bakery in Kallio, Helsinki. The small family bakery produces daily fresh bread since 1955. The sourdough root they are using now is about 50 years old! My friends and fellow students Iina from Finland, Valeria from Russia, Jens and Jakob from Germany, and David and Giovanna from Mexico watched and kneaded the rye sourdough that Jenni Avikainen had already prepared for us. We made about a dozen of reikäleipä, ten of those are hanging now on my curtain pole to dry and wait to be used in one of the upcoming events. Reikäleipä used to be stored like that over the winter. Its taste gets stronger and stronger with time, and its consistency harder and harder to chew on. I am exited to try it!

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A big thanks again to Jenni and her mum, Jani, the half-German-half-Finnish who used to work in the bakery and told interesting stories, and the baking students for your participation and interest!