Signs of the season and rømmegrøt

Hang around with a few Norwegians and you might be lucky enough to dabble in their holiday porridge tradition of rømmegrøt. Beg hard enough and you might be lucky enough to have an expert in rømmegrøt make an entire batch for you, which is the spot where I found myself this past weekend.

My friend Di is easily the World's Best Rømmegrøt Maker. I don't throw that title around lightly, and you can rest assured I've eaten more than any Swede's fair share of good rømmegrøt. Di is a rømmegrøt master. Armed with a pint of cream, a bit of flour, and a few cups of milk she stirs and mashes the mixture into the smoothest, most buttery, creamy, rich concoction ever imagined. Below is her recipe, handed down through generations.

Di's family lovingly refers to the porridge as cream mush, an ironic name for a pudding fit for the gods. Rømmegrøt is magic.

Note: Flour amount varies according to humidity and age of the cream. Di uses Wondra as it comes sifted. The entire cooking process takes up to an hour, although larger batches takes much longer.

Add 2 cups of heavy whipping cream to large pan over medium high heat. Add 1/3 cup Wondra and stir with flat wooden spoon and/or heat proof spatula, occasionally smashing any lumps up against the side of the pan. Stir and cook until the mixture thickens and begins to become a consistent ball of batter.

Sift in more flour slowly and continue stirring and smashing.When butter begins to separate out quit adding flour. Stir constantly (or batter will scorch) and occasionally remove pan from the burner, adjusting heat, if any batter becomes hard and golden.  

Use a metal spoon to remove separated butter, reserving butter for serving. Add 2 cups HOT whole or 2% milk, about 1/4 cup at a time, stirring to mix well. When batter becomes a creamy pudding consistency, add 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1 to 1/2 tablespoon sugar. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

To finish, float the butter on top with a bit of sugar and cinnamon. Serve very warm but not hot since butter and sugar can burn!


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