I’m waiting for the potatoes to cool

Melanie helping make lefse for Easter, Mar/April 1992.
Melanie helping make lefse for Easter, Mar/April 1992.

One of our family traditions is eating lefse on Christmas morning. Lefse is a traditional flatbread from Norway that has a potato base and for North American Norwegians it is a holiday treat. Until she passed away, my paternal Grandmother was the one who prepared it and I inherited the turning stick and griddle shown in the photo above. With a few exceptions, I have made it every year since her death.

This year our family rescheduled Christmas because my brother and I had to work. It isn’t the first time we’ve done so and it’s nice for my sister as my brother-in-law’s family follows French Catholic traditions and as such is with her extended family on Christmas Eve for Midnight Mass. So we’re celebrating next week and that means today is the day I’m making lefse for this year.

As I put pixel to screen, my mashed potatoes are cooling. From what Wikipedia tells me, lefse is generally made with leftover potatoes. Since “leftover potatoes” aren’t really in my vocabulary (they are my mom’s favourite dish, no matter how many we make they always seem to get eaten), I always have to peel and boil the potatoes before I can make the bread. Once I mix in the butter, cream and salt, the mixture has to cool before I add the flour. So there is plenty of time to wait, yearn for lefse and blog.

I’ve taken photos of my lefse process many times and this year so no exception. Taking photos of food while cooking is challenging. In addition to my camera getting covered in potato and flour, my kitchen is poorly lit so the photos aren’t the greatest. However, I’ve got an idea that I hope turns out well. I’m taking photos at three semi-fixed positions of the various stages of prep and I’m hoping to edit them together in a video. Planning for a video is hard, I already know that I missed two shots (the butter alone, the butter and salt alone) but maybe this year will just be a trial run for next year. You never know, I might have a better lit kitchen by then.

As a note, one of the current items on my to do list is getting my digital photos organized, backed up and posted. Hopefully I’ll get the photo essays on lefse that I have planned done and eventually there will be a bunch of blog posts listed below that document my lefse adventures.

/fingers crossed

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