One favourite to start with – palt
This dish is made at home or purchased in the local store. Once prepared, any leftover, can be frozen and taken out for a later feast. They are served with good jam (lingonberry/cranberry) and a good dollop av butter. Common in the northern parts of Sweden but similar can be found further south named Öländska kroppkakor.
The dumplings, palt, are comfort food. Popular among all ages. You have one or two, depending on size. The ingredients are (most of the time); grated raw potatoes, a handfull grated cooked potatoes (can be omitted), flour from barley and regular plain flour and salt. Stuffed with a heaping tablespoon of good, salty chopped and fresh or salted pork belly (cut up thick bacon slizes). When running out of filling, palt without meat (often formed as patties) will be the result which is fine for anyone not enjoying meat.
There are as many recipes as there are chefs – meaning that you can’t go wrong. In this area we usually make use of barley (”kornmjöl” in Swedish) for about 50(-70%) av the amount of four. In close by Piteå, the barley is most of the time omitted. Winter potatoes is preferred over recently harvested ones. See live recording on how to make them.
- preparing the filling/stuffing; Cut up come 600-1000 grams (1,5-2 lbs) of good pork belly/bacon (”sidfläsk”) in small/tiny pieces/cubes. Most use the uncooked/raw meat which will become cooked during the process. Other (the web admin), fry the meat for a short while and set a side to cool.
- filling up a good size pan (at least 3 liters/quarts) with water. Add salt to the water, at least 1 tablespoon. Taste the water to make sure there is a salty taste. Bring the water to boiling when your palt dough is under way, see below.
Continue with the palt making:
- Peel and grind 2-3 handfuls of (raw) potatoes, shred them or use a food processor or a meat grinder. If there are a few (1-2) cooked and chilled potatoes available, peel and shred and add to the raw potatoes.
- Some people would add liquid (2-3 dl of water/milk) to stretch the amount. Some do the opposite, that is drain the potatoes from its liquid. Admin’s suggests: keep the liquid and add more flour instead.
- Add a couple of teaspoons of salt to the potatoe mixture. Taste and add more salt if you don’t feel the salty taste. The flower you add will make it ”less” salty.
- In a good size bowl, add flour from barley to make a batter like a thick pancake batter. Add regular (white) flour to form a soft dough that just holds together. Grab a couple tablespoons of dough and place in your hand. If the dough stays in your hand (does not easily slip between your fingers), the consistency is perfect. Some make the dough harder in order to place and divide on a floured cutting board.
- Make sure the water is starting to simmer/close to boiling.
- Put flour on your hands for the preparation – or rinse then in water, during the process. Both methods work fine. Place about half a tennis ball of dough in your (secondary hand) – often the left one. Flatten the dough in your open hand/palm to make a shallow ”cup”. Add a tablespoon of meat and fold/tuck the dough in your hand toward the center of the palt to be, to form a ball shaped palt. Turn it in your hands to make it look like a ball/palt. Make sure no meet is visible.
- Lower the palt with a cooking spoon into the simmering, but not boiling, water. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Keep an eye on the simmering – turning the heat up/down as you add new palt to the pan. Before adding a new palt to the pan, gently stir once to make sure that they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan. They will surface after a while.
- Simmer for about 45 minutes.
- Serve as described above. Serve with a glass of beer or cranberry juice. Many prefer a glass of milk with this dish.
- Place leftovers on a platter, cool and freeze or keep in the fridge. The leftover can be heated in water for 10-15 minutes or in a microwave oven in halves for 1-2 minutes. Even more popular is to cut the palt into 0,5 inch cubes and fry in butter until crispy.
You might also encounter black and brownish palt. They are not as common and are made much the same way as described above, with addition of either gravy/blood (blackish) or ground calf/beef liver.