Luke’s Life

ApronAdventures Guest Blog: Thanksgiving Lefse

Posted in apartment, food by lrobison on December 3, 2008

Hello Apron Adventurers!  Lindsay was nice enough to ask me to write up a post about the traditional Norwegian flat bread I contributed to our duplex thanksgiving this year, so here it is kids.  Enjoy!

Part of my family’s tradition for both thanksgiving and Christmas dinners for about as long as I can remember has been the making and eating of Lefse.  Lefse originates in Norway, and is about the only thing I can show for my 1/16th Norwegian heritage, but this was the first year I’ve ever attempted to make it alone.  It turned out to be pretty easy, but does take a good amount of time and some special equipment.


Made lefse for thanksgiving

  • 3 cups mashed potatoes ( no lumps )
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbs thick cream
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 1 cup flour

Yield: 10-12 lefse.
20lb of potatoes yields roughly 10 and a half batches ( we like to think big ).

You will also need:

  • lefse griddle.  A flat variable temperature surface with low edges and at least 12″ diameter.  Mine is closer to 24″.
  • lefse stick.  A wooden stick thats flat enough to slide under a lefse and about 3/4″ wide, used for moving the dough from the rolling surface to the griddle.
  • lefse rolling pin.  I’ve never seen these used for anything else, its a regular rolling pin with grooves cut laterally down the side.  Luckily my mom had a spare.
  • Pastry Cloth.  Its hard to find these, but it can be done.  I made mine from a thick cotton canvas pulled tight across a flat, heavy piece of wood ( just like my grandma used to ).  You need it to be at least as big as your griddle, and the more room the better.

Boil and mash the potatoes, mixing in the cream, butter, and salt.  This can be done all at once if making multiple batches.  Place the mixture in the fridge to cool.  You can keep it like this overnight, but I’d throw some saran wrap on it in that case.  Once the potatoes are cold, heat up your handy lefse griddle to about 475 degrees, and rub flour into your pastry cloth.  One batch at a time, add the 1 cup of flour to the potatoes, and make into small fist-sized balls.  To keep them as cold as possible, return them to the fridge, taking out one ball at a time.  Roll each ball into as thin a lefse as possible before it starts sticking to the pin.  This is the tricky part.  Cold dough minimizes stickiness, and frequently rubbing the pin and cloth in flour helps as well.  In order to transfer the lefse from the pastry board, start from one end and roll it up around the lefse stick, unrolling it on to the griddle.  It should cook for about 1 minute a side, enough for golden brown spots to begin to form. When done, place between two moist towels, flipping the pile occasionally.

flour everywhere

And there you have it!  I made 10 pounds of potatoes, and between snacking while cooking, and our 30 guests at thanksgiving, only 3 lefse were left over, so it looks like I’ll have to do it again for Christmas since I had none left to freeze.  We typically serve lefse warm or at room temperature (it cools fast…) with butter, with butter and brown sugar, or just plain.  I usually roll it up and eat about half a lefse at a time, depending on the size.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Ha Det!

Day 1

Posted in apartment by lrobison on April 24, 2007

A new menace has made itself known to our House.  We only have had only one quick glimpse if the foul creature, but you can feel its presence in the air.  Its stench is terrible to be sure, but the noise its deadly claws make is sobering:  a sound like the scratching on the gates of Hell itself.  For now it satisfies itself by solely waiting and watching.  Observing our every move.  Plotting.  I can feel its eyes upon me this very minute, bearing down with a cold stare as black as death, though I know not where it is.  We have seen signs of it in our food, but it only becomes so bold at night when even the good warm sun is afraid to come out for fear of angering the evil animals that claim sovereignty over night.  Mike of the Warrior Clan was able to sight it this evening just after the sun had set, and darkness was closing around us.  It had perched itself high in our food stores, and was making a snack when it found itself cornered by Mike.  Rather than quivering in cowardice like most animals of Earth, this creature fearlessly leapt from its pearch, screeching like some horrible bat and bearing its sharp claws.  I believe it possess some sort of black magic or witch craft, for at that very moment, Mike the Brave was taken over by the spirit of that foul beast, and forced to copy the actions of its now soulless body.  With a look of helplessness, Mike also jumped up in to the air, clumsily baning into objects around him and screeching in loud high voice.  In this moment of confusion, the creature slipped away into the shadows.  Surely we must be more careful when attempting to confront this creature in the future, who knows what other power it may wield.

Its been a while

Posted in apartment, college, UT by lrobison on September 10, 2006

The dust is clearing as the school year picks up speed. some noteable occurences, in no paticular order (loose reverse chronological)

  • Longhorns loose against the buckeyes. a sad day indeed.
  • I dropped spanish and added government. I didn’t need the spanish class, it was for my own benifit, but I realized that one more semester of spanish is really only going to translate into extra 6 months before I forget it all. Its cynical i know, but its true since my memory sucks. This also has the side effect of clearing friday of any classes. wooho!
  • I saw The Rocky Horror Picture Show at the Alamo Draft House. They put on quite a show and made what is truely a terribly-good movie well…. terrible yet so so good.
  • Grandma turned 66. I visted her in New Braunsfels, and somehow got elissa to come along. twas fun.
  • We threw a party to let everyone know where we are and to see all our friends again. it was a success and we had about 50 people here over the course of the night. A large percentage of the people were females we hadn’t met before. Mission Accomplished.
  • We attended Rob-Andrew-Fritz’s house party soiree. They have a three story duplex and a gehto couch. thats all i have to say about that.
  • Jess Andrew and I went drinking at Nasty’s bar and win the Miller contest for a new man law: “A man may admit to being less than 6 feet or less than 6 inches, but not both”. The result was a pitcher of Miller after we had already downed 2 pitchers of Shiner. so we basically had a pitcher each. weeeeee!
  • John invited everyone to go tubing with him on the comal in New Braunsfels. Only Elissa and I took up the offer, but we were joined by brian later. Oh tubing, how i love thee.
  • I’m helping a grad student do some pointer analysis research by getting some things to compile in his environment. I might try to get on some of Lorenzo’s distributed systems. those sound interesting.

Well with all that out of my system, maybe I’ll go back to regular updates. First thing on my list, take pictures of the apartment next time its clean (expect that after we move out).

sleeping room

Posted in apartment, UT by lrobison on May 10, 2006

sleeping room

I got a call from the River Oaks apartment people. We now have our apartment set, we will be living in apt# 132. Jeremy had been told the code to get in earlier so we went and checked it out, and figured out how we were going to arrange things and take measurements for furniture. We decied we would try having a single sleep room with all the beds, and a single study/computers room with all the computers and desks. Our living room will have the console games, TV, and will be hooked up into a free version of Tivo (mythTV). We also hope to wire the place with gigabit ethernet. I can't wait to move in.

Jeremy also found my long lost camera – so the pictures will flow again