Friday, August 12, 2011

Viking Soul Food

(Part 2 -- March 2013 at Good Food Here pod)

(UPDATE: Viking Soul Food moved to the Good Food Here pod in 2012, and can still be found there as of January 2013. The Good Food Here pod is located near SE 43rd and Belmont.)

Viking Soul Food is a food cart located in the Green Castle food pod off NE 19th and Everett.

Here, the main item sold is a "lefse," a traditional soft Norwegian flatbread that resembles a crepe. Sure, it may look like a thin tortilla in some of the photos, but it's definitely not a tortilla. Generally, lefse is made from potatoes, milk, cream, and flour, although lard may also be used. Viking Soul Food use traditional methods when making their lefse, right down to the tools being used. Gotta love that!

Looking for a traditional, lighter introduction to Norwegian cooking, I tried their #4: a sweet lefse with Lingonberry preserves and house-made cream cheese ($3.50). Lingonberries are basically a Scandinavian version of cranberries. Viking Soul Food gets their lingonberries from a local supplier in Oregon.

#4: Sweet lefse of lingonberry preserves and house-made cream cheese
Cross-section so you guys can see the lingonberries and cream cheese
The lefse itself was a perfect thinness, not too thick (so it's no longer a lefse) and not too thin (so it holds the filling in place). The lingonberry preserves retained just a bit of tartness, and kudos to Viking Soul Food for a stunning cream cheese. Very creamy and very light. The bit of sweetness in the lingonberries and perhaps the cream cheese was ideal.

This was really one of those three-bite meals for me, so perhaps it was not necessarily worth $3.50 in that sense. But I could have gotten two sweet lefses for $6, which would be a pretty good deal.

As a note, if you're more of a savory lefse person, their savory lefse of pork/beef meatballs, Norwegian cheese sauce, and sweet/sour pickled cabbage is their other real traditional dish. Check that out as well!

Viking Soul Food brings simple, traditional, and tasty Norwegian flare to Portland! Check them out as soon as you can!

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