I am not Norwegian, but my husband is. When I was first introduced to this traditional flatbread I thought it was delicious. Then I learned how it was made. Lots and lots of cream and butter. Yikes! You would think by now, in all these years that I have been married, that I would have tried a healthier version. But nope. I asked around and no one could tell me any other way to make lefse other than using a lot of butter or cream or instant potato flakes.
Finally, I decided I would play around in the kitchen and see what happens if I try to make lefse myself. Without cream and butter, and with actual potatoes, not flakes.
Lefse had long been a family tradtion in Norway, with families gathering around to make this together. It was more about the togetherness than it was about the lefse. However, that has been changing, as more Norwegians are purchasing, rather than making it from scratch. Even in the Midwest, where the Norwegian community is quite strong, store-bought lefse is more popular. At a Scandinavian store in Minneapolis, Minnesota, generally $80,000 worth of lefse is sold annually.
Since I am all about family and traditions, what I love about this recipe is that super simple to make. Everyone can get back in the kitchen together and have a batch (or 2 or 3) of lefse ready in no time at all.
I use cooled mashed potatoes, so I find it easier to make the potatoes the day before, that way when you are ready to make the lefse, the potatoes are ready and waiting for you.
2 cups mashed potatoes, cooled
1/4 cup sorghum flour
1 tbsp tapioca starch
1 tbsp brown rice flour (plus more for rolling)
1/4 tsp xanthan gum
- In a bowl, mix together of the ingredients except the potatoes.
- Add 1/4 cup of the flour mixture into the bowl of mashed potatoes, mixing it well each time, until fully combined.
- Pull out about 2 tbsp sized portions of the dough and press out on a floured surface until thin (about as thin as a tortilla).
- Carefully, with a large metal spatula, transfer the flattened lefse onto a hot griddle and cook for about 3 minutes on each side.
- Transfer the cooked lefse to a plate covered with a towel to keep the warm while working on the rest.