Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Iron Craft #21-Where we come from

Growing up I always told people I was Polish, Germany, Swedish and French. What a mixture. My mom's mom was Swedish and her dad was the German- or so they always told us. My dad would be the Polish and French. There was always a strong connection to Sweden in our home. My grandmother decorated with lots of Swedish stuff and would tell me stories about the Tomte'. We celebrated Christmas Eve every year with Swedish meatballs, lefse and pickled herring ( not my favorite at all).

My husband is also Swedish and German. His dad's mother, Tora was first generation American leaving Stockholm to come to the United States where she met her husband, Fred. Andy grew up in Door County, WI an area in northeastern Wisconsin settled by Swedes and Norwegians.
Iron Craft #21
The Things in front of Al Johnson's Swedish Restaurant with goats on the roof

From knowing him and spending time up there I grew to love all things Swedish. I love Swedish and Scandinavian architecture, the textiles, housewares and so much more. When thinking about this week's project the first thing that came to mind would be to make a pair of these Swedish Mittens or a pair of these mittens. But knowing my time constraints this week I knew that there was no way I would be able to knit a pair... I am still working on a pair of plain mittens from last winter.

The more I thought about it and what I associate with where I'm from the more I realized that food is something we make to "honor" our heritage. From my German side we make sauerkraut and spareribs, which my cousin, Kathy has written about here.

From the Swedish side we make our traditional Christmas eve meal and each year the boys and I make cookies together. Not just any cookie, but Pepparkokar. We use my husband's grandmother's recipe. We set aside a day each year and make them. The house is usually decorated in Swedish Christmas decorations, we listen to carols and we make cookies. It is a time that we get to share with them a part of their history. So, for the boys and my "craft" we decided to make some cookies.
IC #21 IC #21
Iron Craft #21 Iron Craft #21

Iron Craft #21

Swedish Pepparkokar
from Tora Kordon

3 cups sifted flour
3 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon cloves
1 Cup butter (1/2 #)
1 1/2 cup white sugar
1Tablespoon dark corn syrup
1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon warm water

Sift flour once, measure, add spices and sift again. Cream butter and sugar until mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in the corn syrup and egg. Add the soda which has been dissolved in the warm water. Add flour/spice mixture and mix well. Chill in the refrigerator 2 1/2- 3 hours. Roll very thin on a lightly floured board and cut with cookie cutter.

Bake at 400 degrees for 5-7 minutes or until done.
* the key with the cookies is to get them really thin. And then dip them in some milk and enjoy.

Grandma also made a craft for this week's challenge. She too, associates where she is from with Sweden. She made this folded paper heart in traditional Swedish colors.
Iron Craft #21

The cookies are a favorite in our house-they are loved both baked and raw. This is usually what happens when I turn my back....

IC #21

I'm just hoping there are some cookies left when their dad gets home next week.

1 comment:

shopgirl said...

excellent post. I love the goats on the roof.
And Dad comes home this week? BIG DEAL! Exciting!