Bread and Butter Issues

S 2 with Andreas Viestad EPISODE 07

Flatbread and LefseFlatbread is a type of bread that can be preserved for a very long time. Making this bread used to be a social activity. Women used to gather together and share in the task of making the bread. The lefse is another, more luxurious version of flatbread.

Andreas makes several variations of Flatbread Canapés. They do not necessarily represent how the flatbread was traditionally served, but rather explore how it can be enjoyed with today’s modern ingredients. The lefse should be served hot and with generous amounts of butter, sugar, and cinnamon. This version is still eaten in Norway today, at least around Christmas time.

Andreas prepares a Lefse Roll with Brisling Sardines, Salmon Roe, and Mango. This is quite an exotic combination that has a slightly Mediterranean feel to it together with an eastern touch.

Bread on a StickThe unspoiled and uninhabited forests surrounding Oslo make up about half of the city’s geographical territory. On one of his skiing trips, Andreas stops for a rest and to roast Bread on a Stick. The dough is mixed with a bit of grated cheese, wrapped around a stick and grilled over the campfire.

Pulled on his skis by a horse-drawn sled, Andreas is on his way to the Bogstad Farmstead, right on the border between the urban part of Oslo and the city’s forests. It used to belong to the Anker family — the wealthiest family in Norway, and the only Norwegian family that belonged to the European aristocracy.

A Perfect CompanionAndreas sets up his portable kitchen to make Artisan Bread inside the Bogstad Farmstead. The best Artisan bread takes up to 24 hours to make. But Andreas makes a slightly simpler version of the bread. Everything is handmade and pretty messy. While the dough rests, Andreas ventures out to make some butter – the perfect companion for the bread.

Milk from the Local CowsButter is made from milk, and since he is on a farm, he has to get his milk from the local cows. The cream is separated from the skimmed milk. He mixes it with a little sour cream to give the butter a nice acidic flavor.

A Typical Lunch BagWhen he gets back to the baking, the dough has grown to double its size. He makes three types of Artisan bread: one plain version, the most common in Norway, one with a selection of herbs, and one with seeds, nuts, and dried fruits.

A few slices of the fresh bread are prepared with the homemade butter, ham, and cheese. This combination is what most Norwegians have in their lunch bags.