Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tempt my Tummy tuesday, Poulsbo style.

I hope you enjoy these two recipes. I like them so much mostly because they are what my Grandma and her Mom have made and past down for generations. Poulsbo passes down these traditions and these recipes from women just like my Grandma, Great Grandma, aunts and cousins that all brought these over from Norway. It is that feeling of home and tradition that makes Poulsbo what it is today. The Son's of Norway and the lutheran church that brings these two traditions back to us early for their meals that they share with the public once or twice a year.

Lutefisk (dried cod treated with lye) must surely be the strangest culinary effort credited to the Norwegians, but what a treat when prepared properly. Everyone of course is not a devotee of lutefisk, but those who are defend it vehemently. Others go to the opposite extreme and claim it's a national disgrace. In years past, the homemaker had to go through the complicated task of treating the dry fish with lye, but now, even in America, frozen lutefisk is readily available at selected fish markets and at Scandinavian delicatessens.

Cooking lutefisk the old fashioned way: Do not cook in aluminum vessels as it will darken the kettle. Use three level tablespoons salt to each quart water. Bring water to boil, add salt and return to boil. Add fish which has been sliced into serving pieces and again return to boil, then remove from the heat. Skim, and let fish steep for 5 to 10 minutes depending on thickness. Serve at once.

Without adding water: Put the serving pieces of lutefisk in a kettle, season each pound (450 g) of fish with 1/2 tablespoon of salt and place over low heat. This allows the water to be "drawn" out. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Let steep 5 to 10 minutes. Serve at once.

Baking in foil: Heat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C). Skin side down, arrange lutefisk on a sheet of double aluminum foil and season with salt. Wrap foil tightly about fish and place on rack in a large pan and bake 20 minutes. Cut corner from foil and drain out excess water. Serve at once.

Lutefisk with a firm texture can be obtained by first sprinkling with coarse salt and allowing to stand several hours. Rinse well in cold running water, and soak in unsalted water. Then cook or bake as desired.

Lutefisk must be served hot on piping hot plates. Accompaniments vary from bacon or pork drippings, white sauce, mustard sauce, or melted butter which seems to remain a favorite. Boiled and steamed potatoes, stewed whole, dry green peas are a must as a vegetable accompaniment. The only other necessary additions are freshly ground pepper, lefse, or flatbread. In some parts of Northern Norway, lutefisk is served with melted goat cheese.

Norwegian Lefse

10 pounds potatoes, peeled
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Cover potatoes with water and cook until tender. Run hot potatoes through a potato ricer. Place into a large bowl. Beat butter, cream, salt, and sugar into the hot riced potatoes. Let cool to room temperature.
Stir flour into the potato mixture. Pull off pieces of the dough and form into walnut size balls. Lightly flour a pastry cloth and roll out lefse balls to 1/8 inch thickness.
Cook on a hot (400 degree F/200 C) griddle until bubbles form and each side has browned. Place on a damp towel to cool slightly and then cover with damp towel until ready to serve.


Heather @ Gerber Days said...

I've really been wanting to get into Glee! Can you believe I haven't seen even one episode?! I'm a singer, so you'd think I would be watching! I'm hoping to find some time to watch this season.

Loves. xx

Kingston girl said...

It is so worth watching! You should go and buy them. :)

Blogger Boy said...

Great Poulsbo post on Lutefisk and Lefse YUM. Marina Market in Downtown Poulsbo does carry frozen Lutefisk TV dinners. Yea I know. Suzanne