December 25, 2010

Lefse :: A Family Tradition

Every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas my family makes lefse. For anyone who doesn't know what lefse is... I would describe it as similar to a tortilla, but made with potatoes and WAY yummier. That's right, way yummier. The last few years I've been passed the lefse stick as some sort of odd culinary torch passing. Maybe it's because no one else has the lefse flipping skills that I have (it's all about the roll). Or maybe it's because it takes so long to roll out and cook 20 lefse. I think I'll go with the idea of being especially skilled.

Now, traditionally you eat these rolled up with butter and cinnamon. However, I personally like to roll them up with either turkey or ham and homemade cranberry sauce.

Lefse Recipe --makes 20 lefse
(original recipe by an old Norwegian woman that is somehow related to my family)

You will need:
A potato ricer (looks like a giant garlic press)
A griddle
And hopefully a lefse stick... use a spatula if desperate, but a lefse stick really does make all the difference in the world... look online.
1 1/2 pounds of Russet Burbank potatoes
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened completely
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups flour

Let's Get Started!
Peel potatoes and cut into quarters. Place into a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a simmer. Keep potatoes at a low simmer until a skewers lips in easily, about 20 minutes. Drain potatoes and allow to sit until cool enough to handle.
Put potatoes through a ricer. Beat in butter, cream, sugar, and salt. Refrigerate overnight, uncovered.

Add flour. Stir until well blended. Divide into 20 equal portions. Heat electric griddle to 400 degrees.
On a floured surface, roll out the balls of dough until very thin, making circles about 10-12" in diameter. Using a lefse stick, transfer to the heated griddle and cook on each side. Stack between two terrycloth towels and cover with a plastic bag.

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