Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Family Tradition

One thing I always look forward to at Thanksgiving especially is the Lefsa! My grandmother was pure Norwegian and our house would be filled with Scandinavian foods during the holidays. For those that have never heard of Lefsa, it essentially looks like a tortilla, but is made with potatoes, flour, butter and cream. When my grandmother made them years ago, she used lard. It's such a special treat and I have grown very appreciative of my grandmother standing over her lefsa grill making one at a time. It's time consuming and there is flour every where, but so worth the effort. Here's how I made them.

I started out with russet potatoes cut them into managable pieces and boiled them until done, but not falling apart or they will be too wet. Then you can either rice them or mash them and adding butter. I use a stick and a half of butter for a mixing bowl full. I then cool and refridgerate them several hours. Then I add 1/2 cup of cream to 4 cups of mashed potatoes and mix well.

I then mix in about 1 1/2 cups of flour and knead in by hand. Then make into a ball the size that your two hands can hold together and form into a slight patty. Refridgerate to keep cold as it is much easier to roll out.

Then one at a time roll out onto a floured board. You will need to use a little more flour to keep from sticking but too much will make them tough. I then use a white pillow case and covered my pizza stone. The lefsa rolling pin has groves in it. Flour it well and use light pressure in rolling the dough out about as thin as you can without tearing. It does take some practice.

You will then use a lefsa stick to transfer the lefsa to the pan. The stick must also be floured well.

The lefsa is made on a special lefsa grill. It was preheated to 450 degrees. While it cooks, it starts to bubble up slightly.

Then turn over with the lefsa turning stick to brown the other side.

When it is done, transfer it to a cozy made of kitchen towels. It will keep them warm and keep them from drying out.

Before long you will have a stack of them for your Thanksgiving dinner!

You can store them in a zip lock bag. I fold them in fourths. I keep out enough to eat and freeze the rest. I made 22 lefsa pieces from a 10 lb. bag of potatoes.

To eat, butter them and heat in the microwave . You can also butter and add cinnamon sugar as a sweet treat! I even like to roll them up with link sausage in them. With turkey, I like to use it to mop up gravy with.

Note: If you are looking to purchase a lefse grill you can go HERE ! Or if you don't want to mess with making them, you can get them ready made. You will miss getting them for Thanksgiving, but you can still get it in time for Christmas!

This evening, I also made an AWESOME Italian soup! A bit of my grandfather's heritage, but the recipe came from my friend Jan in North Dakota. I changed a bit of it but it has become our favorite!!!! It's awesome! Thanks Jan! It will certainly become a family tradition too!

Jan's Italian Soup

1 hot Italian sausage and 2 sweet (adjust to what you like)
remove the skins and chop and brown with onion and celery (About 1/2 cup of each)
and add a couple of cloves of minced garlic

add 1 qt. container of beef broth (I didn't have any so I used 1 quart of water with 5 chicken OXO cubes)
1 can of Italian diced tomatoes
2 cans of water and a half a box of bow tie pasta
I added 1 Tbs. each of basil and oregano

cook for 10 min. or until pasta is finished. YUMMY!!!!


Dotti said...

I can smell that lefse cooking on the griddle clear over here in Nevada. Yum. I'm Norweigian. My granny had a Land O Lakes creamery in her tiny town. She must have gone thru at least 50 pounds of butter at holiday time! LOL


Come on over Dotti:) Do you smell the turkey too? I also have 5 turkeys in the freezer, one in the oven and one being smoked. LOL We shall be eating turkey until it comes out our ears, but I can't resist when they are on sale for 24 cents a lb.! The kitties are in heaven too! So nothing goes to waste.

That's funny about your granny. I must be trying to follow her. I bought 12 lbs of Land O Lakes butter when it was on sale this past week and now wondering if I should have gotten more. LOL

Deborah said...

Yummy! And what a lovely blog!

Shasta said...

Both of these delicious! I will definitely have to try the lefse!

Kim D. said...

My mother was pure Norwegian and she made Lefsa every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas.. Yummm it's so good, I miss having it. Maybe I should make some for Christmas and carry on the tradition.

Patty Skypants said...

I ain't no scareda no buttah!! Bring it ON! This is a wonderful tutorial! You are the only person I've ever met who actually makes this! Now I gotta try it myself. Happy Thanksgiving, sweetie pie!! xxoo Patty

morningDove said...

i love trying your recipes. so far they have been wonderful. must try this one too. thank you for sharing.