Fear of Clowns

"Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable."
- H. L. Mencken

Monday, December 06, 2004

This is lefse 


Does everybody's fingernails look that pink? I will take it as a compliment from my body on how healthy I keep it. That is a piece of lefse along with my stunning thumbnail. Lefse (LEF-suh) is a Norwegian pastry bread made from potatoes and flour. It's delicious if you grew up eating it, but usually unappealing if you didn't.

Two recipes are used in my extended maternal family: "State Fair" and "Clarkfield", the second being named after the "Clarkfield Cookbook". Most likely "Clarkfield Lutheran Cookbook". Or maybe it was a clipping from the Clarkfield newspaper. It definitely has something to do with Clarkfield's geographic proximity to my mom's hometown of Granite Falls. The significant difference between the two recipes is that Clarkfield uses real potatoes, State Fair uses Potato Buds. The State Fair is drier and less pliable, and is the recipe I prefer (to eat).

I've never tried to make lefse - it's allegedly quite hard as it's one of those things that you have to account for the humidity and temperature of the room. Making it involves rolling out the dough, flouring it and grilling it on an extremely hot surface - one at a time.

Most people butter and sugar half a piece and roll it up as pictured. Some fold it into triangles. At an extended family get together Saturday, someone had brought some that had cinnamon in it. One hears of people putting jelly in it, but no one ever claims to know someone who has actually eaten jelly in lefse.

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