I left ya some lefse

Some of my earliest memories as a kid involve food. I hail from Scandia: a small, Swedish and Norwegian town in Minnesota. Growing up, I sampled many flavors of each homeland. One that stands out is the simple, flat and delicious lefse (pronounced LEFF-SUH).

By definition, lefse is a traditional soft Norwegian flatbread. It is made with potatoes, flour, butter, and milk or cream. It is cooked on a large, flat griddle. Special tools are used to prepare lefse, including long wooden turning sticks and special rolling pins with deep grooves. It takes work and skill (like anything good).

Lefse in a ziploc bag
Neatly folded and ready to eat right out of the bag

By itself, lefse isn’t impressive. The texture is mildly interesting. It’s rather bland and boring. But, the minute you warm it up, add some butter and sprinkle on cinnamon and sugar, roll it up and take a bite – you are immediately welcomed into a Norwegian wonderland of taste. Your mouth will thank you.

Lefse with cinnamon and sugar
Add a little butter (real butter is best), cinnamon and sugar and you have yourself a party.

I’ve never made lefse. Couldn’t even tell you where to begin. But thank goodness our WFLA Chief Meteorologist Steve Jerve does. This tall Norwegian is quick with the turning sticks and whips up batches of lefse to Norwegian perfection. And since we both hail from Minnesota, he honors our brotherhood with a small Ziploc bag of lefse for me every Christmas. And each year I am transported back to my childhood with every bite. Thank you, Steve.

Bella-approved! And that’s saying something from this picky eater.

If you’re looking to liven up your morning coffee conversation, don’t sleep on lefse. It may not look like much, but you can likely find it at the grocery store. But if it wasn’t made by a Norwegian, I can’t promise you that your life will change dramatically, but it will improve.

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Josh Benson

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Josh Benson


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