Æbleskiver, a whaddabada?
Ahhh yes, Christmas. Have you had your æbleskiver and gløgg?
I had my first taste of æbleskiver (pronounced: Eb-el-sku-wyr) last weekend at the Winter Market. It's a traditional Danish treat often served in December leading up to Christmas. They're roughly the size of golfballs and are puffy, light and round. And they're good. Real good -- they taste kind of like pancake crossed with a popover. Definitely comforting.
And now, you can make them from home! A Minnesota family is marketing both æbleskiver mix and the special pans you need to cook them. The local company is called Aunt Else's and is named for Else (Andersen) Jacobsen, who lives in Morgan, Minnesota. The recipe has been in the family for over 100 years, and the company uses locally grown organic wheat flours and buttermilk in the mix they sell.
Actually making æbleskiver looks a little tricky. You literally needle the batter while it cooks with a knitting needle to get it to its perfectly round shape. (If this sounds confusing, don't worry -- there are instructions on the website!)
Courtesy of Aunt Else's.
Chad Gillard, of Aunt Else's tells me they are traditionally filled with a bit of apple, but you can also use chocolate or berries or anything else that sounds goods to you. You can even go savory, by adding a bit of sausage. Gillard likes them with ginger syrup. If you choose not to fill them with a goodie, you can also serve them with powdered sugar or dipped in apple sauce or jam.
In Denmark during the holidays, æbleskiver is served with gløgg, the Scandinavian mulled wine. There are many varieties of gløgg, but the main ingredients usually are some compilation of red wine, sugar (or molasses), and spices (think: cinnamon, cardamom, cloves). Sometimes, people also add another alcohol like vodka or brandy to the mix. After heating, the spiced-up wine can be served with other little treats like raisins and gingerbread. Mulled wine on a cold night? Sounds good to me.
I can't help you on the gløgg (it's Minnesota, just ask your Scandinavian friends!), but if you want to try æbleskiver, you can find them at the next Winter Market, the third Saturday of the month, Jan. 17. See you there!
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Minneapolis & St. Paul dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.