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For Norwegian-Americans, Christmas Cheer Is Wrapped Up In Lefse

Enlarge this imageMegan Walhood enjoys the distinctive toasty potato flavor of lefse. “There’s a little something so comforting about soft, starchy factors,” she claims.Deena Prichep for NPRhide captiontoggle captionDeena Prichep for NPRMegan Walhood enjoys the exceptional toasty potato flavor of lefse. “There’s a little Gump Worsley Jersey something so comforting about tender, starchy points,” she claims.Deena Prichep for NPRFor quite a few Norwegian-American people, the biggest Christmas addre s just isn’t foil-wrapped chocolate or sugar-dusted cookies. It can be lefse, a simple flatbread. Lefse are sort of like comfortable tortillas, created generally from mashed potatoes (using a small unwanted fat and flour blended in to kind a tender dough). They are normally spread with butter and sugar, or rolled up that has a little bit of lingonberry jam. And people which make them make them via the dozens. “It’s most likely certainly one of the first foodstuff I fell in love with,” claims Megan Walhood, who life in Portland Ore., and it has relatives roots in Norway. “The relaxation with the 12 months, I would just take into consideration, when are we heading to have lefse once again?” A lot more On this SeriesThis is part of a number of stories discovering the prosperous variety of Christmastime edibles all over the world, along with the stories driving the food.The Salt Pride And Prejudice: For Latinos, Tamales Can Flavor Of BothThe Salt Tourtiere: A French-Canadian Twist On Xmas PieExplore The many Tales With this Series: The 12 Times Of Quirky Christmas Meals All around The Globe Walhood enjoys the distinctive toasty potato taste. And, she says, “there’s something so comforting about gentle, starchy things.” For that Walhood loved ones, that comfort and ease goes way back again. Megan’s dad, Dale Walhood, grew up in North Dakota, by using a sturdy feeling of his Norwegian heritage and lefse. “On my father’s facet on the loved ones, lefse arrived [with the household for the U.S.] in 1825, for that opening in the Erie Canal.” Several with the bordering families inside their rural component of North Dakota had equivalent roots. And it confirmed within the lefse. “Weddings and funerals and christenings. Everything that smacked of a great deal of Norwegians there yeah, there’d be stacks of it,” Walhood remembers. Nowadays, lefse in america is practically reserved for Christmas (and, in certain households, Thanksgiving). To the Walhoods, lefse-making can be a true spouse and children task. Peggy Walhood, Megan’s mother, has Swedish roots (“a mixed relationship,” she laughs), but discovered from her mother-in-law the art of wrapping up the still-warm lefse in towels to keep them smooth and pliable.As with a lot of basic food items, substantially of it arrives all the way down to strategy. The real key to lefse, the Walhoods describe, is to keep i sues tender. Which means chilling the mashed potatoes so that you only need a bare minimum of flour to sort a dough, and rolling them pleasant and slender that has a special grooved rolling pin. “You want to roll it slim adequate, after which you can also even,” Megan Walhood explains. “You don’t need to own a unwanted fat edge in addition to a skinny edge, which are not the perfect. They’re not authorized because of the ‘Lefse Fee,’ ” she and her father giggle. There is certainly even an artwork to shimmying an extended flat stick known as a lefse adhere beneath the dough to transfer it into the griddle. Then you definately brush from the extra flour, to keep it from either burning to the griddle or getting absorbed and toughening the flatbread. It’s a step that yields a nice completed products, but additionally a good quantity of floury me s. Dale Walhood jokes that cleanup was “about a six-hour vacuum occupation.” Once the lefse are completed, all warm and toasty and alluring, they’re distribute with butter and sugar. And devoured. Carrying within the lefse tradition is especially poignant this calendar year, the family members says. Dale Walhood was diagnosed with cancer while in the spring. They failed to think they’d get this Xmas together.The SaltWhy We Hold Restricted To Our Family’s Getaway Meals Traditions The Walhood lefse legacy extends much further than this distinct floury table. A few a long time again, Megan and her husband, Jeremy, opened a busine s and meals truck in Portland, Ore., known as Viking Soul Meals. The entire menu is predicated all-around Dale’s lefse. “I’m amazingly very pleased of her,” Dale claims, just about prevail over. “Her sensitivity, and her commitment to top quality. And i’m one among 7 young children, so that they all glance to her for his or her lefse.” Megan and Jeremy estimate that Viking Soul Food items will flip about 250 kilos of potatoes into lefse this 7 days enough to make reminiscences on dozens of Xmas tables.

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