A Mountain Hearth Christmas ~ Day 5: Lauraine Snelling

Posted on November 8, 2013 | 23 comments

Mountain Hearth Christmas names in darker green

Imagine a fireside scene…
Logs crackle,
Sparks dance,
Conversation stirs…
The air is tinged with the warm scents of fresh-baked cookies.

That’s where we invite you this week…

To a place of sweet fellowship, sharing not just the recipes of a traditional cookie exchange, but also the corners of our hearts where we hold cherished scriptures.

Our hope through this blog hop is to join with you in starting the holiday season off in gentle, truth-filled simplicity, and perhaps even inspiring a new tradition in your home.


The Way It Works: Readers who “hop” from blog to blog this week will have five printed recipes and scriptures by the end of the week. The scriptures can be crafted into the beginning of a scripture garland– a place to gather verses close to the hearts of those you love. They can also be used as ornaments or gift tags.

Read on for more information, and be sure to check the list of all five stops at the bottom of this post!

Our final stop this week in the Mountain Hearth Christmas blog hop is brought to you by
Author Lauraine Snelling:

author photo Lauraine2

Welcome! It’s my joy today to treat you to a beloved Norwegian tradition…

Lefse is the Norwegian answer to Mexican tortillas. Every country has its own type of bread or cracker, and this is ours.

This is my grandmother’s recipe and she was the best lefse-maker ever. The trick is rolling the dough thin enough and baking on a non-greased griddle. You can also use a lefse griddle which is round, and mine has been used for pancakes mostly.

My mother used to make it on top of our wood range kitchen stove. One turns lefse with a long thin wooden stick. My father made mine from the wooden part of an old pull down shade. Lefse sticks can also be purchased in Scandinavian stores such as this one.


6 large peeled potatoes
2 dashes of salt
1/2 c flour
2 heaping tabs of shortening
1/4 c half and half

Cut up and boil the potatoes until soft. Drain, mash or run through a ricer which is what Grandma used. Add remaining ingredients and form into small patties, dependent upon the size of your griddle. Roll thin on a floured board or cloth, turning over once. Slide lefse stick carefully under the rolled dough and bake on griddle, turning once. bubbles will form and brown. This does not take long to bake as you want them soft not crispy. Then using the stick again slide it under and lay the leffse out of a dish towel. My mother used to use newspapers underneath the towel where you stack up the grilled lefses. cover them and let them cool slowly.

There are videos available on lefse-making, both for purchase and online (click here for an example). Sometimes, there are also classes at Scandinavian stores or when a group gets together to make these.

Grandma made hers hour after hour to sell in the local grocery store. Churches that have lutefisk and lefse suppers, get folks together to make them. My biggest problem has always been to get the dough rolled thin enough. Pie dough is much thicker than lefse.

Click the picture below to find the printable recipe, and then read on in this post for the story behind my favorite Christmas scripture.

Lauraine preview

If you’re following the blog hop this week, we’ll each share a scripture that’s dear to our heart. You can cut out the strip and create a paper chain/garland with them, or cut out the wreaths that bear the scriptures, to use as ornaments, gift tags, or to adorn pine garlands, etc. The hope is to create a simple but meaningful reminder of the life that this season celebrates, and the Life Eternal that we share, as a result.

My verse is…


Every time I hear that, I hear it with the full orchestra and choir in Messiah. Listen in on these beautiful voices…

In the comments, would you share a favorite scripture of yours? Feel free to share a favorite recipe of your own, or a memory attached to it. We’ve loved hearing your tales and special moments this week, and just can’t thank you enough for joining us!

At the end of the week, each of the five of us will pick one of the scriptures from our comments, and put them together on one last printable for you in the days that follow. When all is said and done, you’ll have 10 scriptures total to begin your scripture garland, and we’ll provide you with a blank template as well, should you wish to carry on the tradition and include more friends-and-family-favorite scriptures in your garland.



Check back here next week for information on where to find those last printables!

Happy lefse making, and a blessed and joy-filled Christmas!

If you’d like to share this post quickly and easily, click here for Facebook, or here for Twitter.


If you enjoyed this peek into Norwegian history and tradition, you won’t want to miss Lauraine’s newest release: An Untamed Heart. You can find out all about the story by clicking here to visit her website.

An Untamed Heart by Lauraine Snelling

The Mountain Hearth Christmas Line-up:
Monday 11/4: Laura Frantz
Tuesday 11/5: Joanne Bischof
Wednesday 11/6: Melissa K. Norris
Thursday 11/7: Amanda Dykes
Friday 11/8: Lauraine Snelling


  1. Hi, Lauraine!

    Just an interesting post! I have always wanted to visit Norway – I’m thinking it must be a beautiful country!

    Your recipe looks delicious, but I could probably never get the ingredients rolled thin enough! Potatoes are used in the recipe, yet – you said the lefse is known as a cracker in Norway?

    Three Christmas memories stand out in my mind, as a child – one when I received a baby doll , doll bed, metal trunk to hold it’s clothes, & a Lu Ann Simms doll (Lu Ann Simms used to sing on the Arthur Godfrey program); the second was when I sneaked into Christmas gifts, opened & re-wrapped them (while my mother was out of the house), & discovered Christmas morning, that I had robbed myself of the joy of being surprised when opening Christmas gifts; & the third was when I received a walking doll from my grandparents, that was purchased with coffee can lids – my piano teacher collected dolls, & had one just like it.

    A scripture verse that I try to follow: 1 Thessalonians 5:11 – “Therefore encourage (admonish, exhort) one another and edify (strengthen and build up) one another (amplified bible)”. Encouragement makes any task more enjoyable.

    Thanks SO much , ladies, for the enjoyment received from the blog hops of A Mountain Hearth Christmas!

    • Bonnie,

      If you really want to go to Norway, come join us in June. My first trip there ever and I will be hostessing a ten-day tour where we will be looking in Ingeborg’s roots and locale, along with lots of other great things happening in Norway. We leave from Minneapolis on June 27 and return July 6. I can promise this will be different, read that crazier, more fun, than any other tour. All because we get to focus on all things Ingeborg. Once you read An Untamed Heart, you’ll have a better idea of the places we will be going.
      Anyway, just wanted to let you know of this. Glad you have enjoyed the blog hop. It sure went by fast.
      Oh and you can get them thin enough but even thick is yummy. serve with butter and sugar as you well know.
      blessings, Lauraine

  2. Thanks Lauraine–I, too, have great memories of a grandma and other making lefsa. The lefsa you make we called potato cakes. Our lefsa is made without potatoes and after baking on the griddle, it is allowed to dry out and becomes like a brittle cracker. Before eating them, the lefsa is dredged through warm water and set between tea towels or waxed paper to soften. We used them as a tortilla and rolled up potatoes, cod fish, and lots of butter into them. Very fragile when stuffed full!

    • Thanks Linda. I think I had heard of that method but I appreciate more information. I love to hear of these kinds of things. I love flat bread too and someone made it for my quilters meeting in Minot just before Hostfest. Homemade is really yummy.
      But that is usually the case.

      All these recipes and posts make me want to go bake and cook and not write. Not good.

      One time a friend commented that lefse was Norwegian tortillas and my mother got a bit miffed. We still laugh about that.

      thanks for commenting.

  3. So happy to finish this wonderful week with Lauraine. Lefse is new to me but anything with potatoes I love! And I love the traditions behind it and the fact this is her grandmother’s recipe. The Scripture and music and thoughts above really minister to me.

    Off to share the post on Pinterest. Thanks so much!

    • Thanks Laura for sharing on Pinterest. What a great idea. I too love anything with potatoes. Especially ND red potatoes. My favorites of all time. I’m sure I could pick them out in a blind taste test.

      Hope your books are selling well. They are great! I hear raves about them, especially from Wendy Lawton. She’s the one that got me reading you.

      blessings and hugs

  4. Hello Lauraine!

    Thank you for sharing your beloved Norwegian tradition and recipe for Lefse. Family recipes are always so special because of the wonderful memories they evoke!

    The scripture I am sharing today is John 16:33. “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.”

    Thank you all for this wonderful week of fun, food, and fellowship!

    • Thank you for your comment. I too love heritage kinds of things. thank you for the verse too; always a good one to remember.

  5. I absolutely adore lefse! I grew up in Tacoma, Washington and Pacific Lutheran University there always hosts a Scandinavian-themed craft festival called the Yule Boutique. The women all wear traditional outfits and they hand out all sorts of Norwegian treats. Lefse (rolled up with butter and sugar) was my favorite. A few years ago I found a restaurant that served turkey & cranberry sandwiches rolled in lefse. Mmmm. Sadly, they closed down. I’m going to have to make my own now, I guess! Thanks for sharing the recipe, Lauraine!

    • Karen, we’re practically neighbors, I’m in Skagit County, northeast of Seattle. 🙂

  6. Lauraine, thank you so much for being here today! I’ve listened to this song at least five times now, and it takes me back to my choir days, with all the vocal sections clambering every which way over those amazing scales in that song. You are a blessing, and I’m thankful for you!!

  7. Lauraine,

    One of my favorite Scriptures at Christmastime is the words of Simeon in Luke 1:30-32 (actually the whole story of Simeon seeing baby Jesus): “For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.”

    Thank you for A Mountain Hearth Christmas; it has been a blessing.


  8. Lauraine, as someone having Norsk/Swedish heritage, I loved your recipe! I have an ebelskiver pan my Grandma passed down to me–not sure if it’s the same thing you have, but it sounds similar. Makes little pancake-type things. I am hesitant to use it on an electric range since the bottom is exposed–let me know if you know what I mean and if I can use that!

    And I WISH to goodness I could get to Norway someday (relatives from Trondheim). I just wrote a Viking historical novel, actually, based on the Icelandic sagas, and I want to visit Iceland, Norway, and L’anse Aux Meadows (since half my book is set in North America, half in Greenland).

    I MUST read one of your books, Lauraine! All the best to you and thank you authors for doing this fun bloghop!

  9. Lauraine,

    Thank you for being part of this sweet fellowship and recipe time:) I must say I Have never heard of or tried lefse, but I must say I am game to try. We love to try new things, just the other day my son’s school hosted a heritage night and we tried food from all around the world:) ( my son even got me to try a cricket). The verse I would like to share is James 1:17, Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, Thank you again for sharing:)

  10. I have never had this before but think I would like to try this recipe. Look forward to reading this book. Blessings

  11. I love the idea of a paper chain with Bible verses on them. I will keep that in mind. My favorite verse is Psalm 18:30. As for God His way is perfect. Have a great day and weekend!

  12. Hey Lauraine,

    Thank you for the recipie, I have never had one before so this will be something interesting and fun too try.
    Your new book looks so pretty. I can’t wait to read it. My favorite Christmas bible verse is Luke 2:12. And I love egg nog cookies.

  13. Our church will make Lefse for the next 4 mornings.
    We have a bake sale and we make the Lefse for our
    Men’s. Lutefisk Supper. Our recipe is different then
    yours, but oh so soft and ummy!
    8 cups of rices potatoes, 1/2 cup half & half,
    1/2 cup whipping cream, 1 stick melted butter,
    Salt. To taste. Cool overnight. Next day add 1 –
    1 1/2 cups flour, then make into balls. Add flour as
    needed to roll out. Makes about 25

  14. Lauraine,

    These look fun and I’ve never had them. But we grow our own potatoes, so I’m going to experiment with our purple and red potatoes. What a fun way to round out our delightful hop. I’ve so enjoyed each of these recipes and the stories that surround them. I can’t wait to begin reading Ingeborg’s tale from the beginning. And we share a very dear friend in Colleen Reece, if I’m not mistaken. 🙂

    Thank you so much for being part of the Mountain Hearth Christmas.

    • Hey Melissa,

      I love growing fresh fruits and veggies 😉 I love growing potatos 🙂 I love growing these things because they are super easy to grow. I didn’t know that there were purple and red potatoes I’ve only seen the the white and sweet potatos.
      Thanks for sharing friend 🙂

      • Danie,

        The purple potatoes are an heirloom potato. They also have 10 times more antioxidants than regular potatoes. The kids love the color of the mashed potatoes they make, too. If you’re a gardener and interested in heirloom gardening, I’ve got a free book about it on my website. I wish I could grow sweet potatoes, but we’re too cold for them.

  15. Hi Lauraine,

    What a special recipe and history. I don’t believe I’ve ever had lefse. Are they filled then, like blintzes, or just eaten like a slice of bread with a meal? I’m grateful for all you ladies sharing family recipes. My grandmothers never cooked, or even baked. (Guess that happens when you’re a late-in-life baby. The grams have all “retired” by the time you could cook with them.  )

    My verse today is “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” Isaiah 26:3, KJV The peace is a readily available gift, and I’m glad to be reminded I need to CHOOSE to trust God.

    I love your verse, and just get excited every time I study the names of God. What an amazing God He Is.

    Thanks for your part in this special week.

    Mary Kay

  16. So enjoyed this blog hop and Lauraine’s recipe can’t wait to try it.
    my favorite scripture isLuke 8:44-48 woman came from behind and touched the boarder of His garment And immediately her flow of blood stopped. “Who touched Me? all denied it Peter and those with Him said, Master the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, Who thouched me? But Jesus said, Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me. ”
    “And He said to her, Dauther be of good cheer; your faith has made you well. Go in peace. ”
    Peace and blessings Lauraine