So what the heck is Lefse? Well if you are Norwegian, you already know. I am sure that half of the folks in Bottineau, North Dakota are boiling and ricing pounds of potatoes to make this delectable treat! Which is covered in butter and sprinkled with sugar and rolled up and shoved in eager little mouths!
When my Great Grandfather, Fredrik Nilssen Vestre, of Vatne, married my Great Grandmother, Hannah Petrine, from Dyroy they soon set out to the U.S. and stopped just short of the Canadian border in Souris Township. Most of the people moving there were of Nordic descent and came from Sweden, Norway, Scotland ( where my other Grandpa came over from and married the daughter of Fredrik, Anna Vestre, born in the grain bin since the house wasn’t finished yet!)
They brought with them the customs and food of their homeland and it was the best food I ever ate! Being from the deep south, our holidays had to incorporate a few different cultures. But today it’s all about the Vestre family and what we make.
This my friends, is Lefse! It is the best thing ever! I have only made it once. It’s hard. Usually someone sends me some. I can never think of Lefse without thinking about Lutefisk. Lutefisk is dried whitefish (normally cod, but ling and burbot is also used) treated with lye. It is nasty and stinks and I think they must leave it out in the sun for a few days to ripen…Every year the First Lutheran Church in Bottineau has a Lefse and Lutefisk Dinner. I went once. I will not go back.
Next time I will share some of the sweets we love and how you can make them too!