Submitted by Clara Hare
It was December 10, 2008. I needed lefse.
Not that I can eat lefse myself for as many of you know I am a celiac, intolerant to oats, wheat, barley and rye. Intolerant, but not allergic for if I were allergic I could just swallow a pill or drink some other medication and keep on eating. I can not even make lefse for inhaling the dust of the sifted wheat flour is enough to wreak havoc on my small intestine. But that is another story!
I needed lefse because my second grandson, Dylan, was having an Ethnic Appetizer Christmas Party at his school, Glenmore Elementary. Everyone was to commit to a different country. Dylan immediately said: (as his teacher told me later) “My Bestemor is a Norwegian. I’ll ask her to make us something which doesn’t have wheat flour because she is a celiac.”
Lefse would have been ideal, but I had not yet practiced making it with bean flour. Where do I get real lefse, but from the Sons of Norway! Here’s where the real story begins.
It was December 10, 2008 (my mother would have been 105 that day if she had not died thirty years earlier; that’s another story!). December 10 was the Sons of Norway lefse making morning at Richter Hall. My husband, Carl, went to the hall to buy lefse for 30 pupils. “They all helped me,” he said. “They even wrapped the lefse in tea towels after picking out the best ones.”
The evening before his sixth grade party, after his homework was finished, Dylan came over (‘came over’ because we live next door to each other in the same house with a double garage between and a long deck along the back of both our homes. But that is still another story!) He came over to butter, sugar, cinnamon, roll and cut the lefse into two inch pieces. He used a ruler. He carefully arranged the lefse on my silver platter with a Norwegian flag and a “NORWEGIAN POWER, Eat lefse” button in the center. He covered all in saran wrap and put it in the fridge. Dylan borrowed a tie from Carl, his Da, (Carl is Irish) to wear with his white shirt, black dress pants and polished oxfords. He was going to stand behind his lefse at the display table and answer questions.
The next day after school, Dylan ran across to my side. “It was a HIT, Bestemor! The lefse is all gone, all 50 pieces. We could have used much more. Some kids took more than one piece, even though we were supposed to sample only one of each! All the teachers came in and ate some, too.”
But the real end of the story, I heard later that evening. Before he had left for school that morning, Dylan had offered his father, my son, a piece of lefse. His dad had thought he meant lutefiske and refused.