Feeding a picky eight year old can be hard. Feeding a picky eight year old visiting her potato-growing grandma is a whole other story. A Tex-Mex and Chinese guzzling eight year old just cannot understand her grandma’s cuisine philosophy. Especially if they are as follows:
- Use only Salt and pepper for spices
- Serve every meal with boiled potatoes and carrots.
- Eat fish every day except Sunday. Then you can eat salmon (No. This is not fish.)
And so after many days of sitting potty-mouthed at the table, and then secretly stealing lefse after every meal. We reached a compromise. My sister and I would eat three things: 1.Mashed potatoes and sausage 2. Meat balls and 3. Fleskepannekaker (Norwgian pancakes cooked in bacon fat)
At 17, I was a bonafide Norwegian fish monger. Unfortunately, I wasn’t quite the fishmonger my ancestors would be proud of. There was no hawking of my wares from a gently swaying boat along the harbor to hungry housewives. Instead, I mostly sold to tourists who mostly bought small opened faced sandwiches, and sometimes gave me a hard time for selling whale.
In my booth, there were no foul-mouthed sailors staring out to sea to ensure their safe voyage back home. I sold fish with Santiago from Uruguay, always drinking mate, Eduardo from Barcelona, always smoking and sometimes singing “Singing in the Rain” with me when the weather was really terrible — which was most of the time. Out of 15 employees, there was one other Norwegian.