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Happy-Gourmand

National Jam Buster Day

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She says:

I was thinking about Canada Day coming up, and celebrating our culture, and it occurred to me that there are lots of food days for celebrating too. (Did you know that there is a “Tapioca Day”, “Bologna Day” and even “Sneak Some Zucchini on Your Neighbour’s Porch Night”?) What would be a Canadian food day? What is the quintessential food that Canadians consume on our national holiday??

Well, as you are no doubt aware, gentle reader, the essence of Canada is tied intrinsically to its complex roots and multi-cultural mosaic of people all woven into one delicious buffet. There is no one answer for you. But, in case you are looking for a new idea of something to sample or wondering what else is on the list besides your favourites, here is some food for thought (or celebrating…)

Many of the celebrated food days are linked to American business, but they are simple associations: there is no political or historical significance to National Butterscotch Pudding Day (Sept 19 in case you are a fan), and National Horseradish Month was created when the National Horseradish Information Council simply requested it go in a published calendar of events (it is in July, if you are keen to support it). Interestingly enough though, apples are one of the longest celebrated foods, now enjoying three months of festivities. Apparently they do help sales of apples, so I suppose that is good at a grass roots level.

But back to Canada… July is Hot Dog Month, but those are known to be almost as American as apple pie, right? The Canadian version of apple pie is to have it with cheddar cheese. You have probably heard of Montreal smoked meat and flipper pie, and there is sugar pie and Red Rose tea (“Only in Canada, you say? Pity!” – remember those TV ads?!) Of course we in the West would like something to celebrate too, wouldn’t we? Wild rice from Manitoba is getting closer, or how about the Bloody Caesar cocktail? (it was invented by a bartender in Calgary in 1969 but I guess a cocktail is not really food…) Well, how about jam busters? Did you know that is the Canadian prairie donut? I knew I loved them as a kid (Specialty Bakery makes delicious ones with jelly that squish out the sides if you bite them in the right place.)

You can incorporate some of Canada’s blend of cultures if you enjoy a Chinese buffet or a “Lumberjack’s Breakfast”. Both of those were invented in the 1870’s in the shantytown of Gastown (Vancouver) when men from various European backgrounds worked in the city long days and wanted a hearty meal. Or you can celebrate National Picnic – and Grilling - Month and take your family to the beach to ring in the real start of summer. Any way you slice it, I think the important thing is to remember to celebrate: the idea to “eat, drink and be merry” has been around for a long time, so we should make sure we are proficient at it! (Just watch out for those zucchinis on the night of August 8th.)

He says:

I will attempt to create the perfect Canada food day.

Breakfast would have to be cereal from our Prairie grains, sweetened with maple syrup, and dairy from Quebec. The lunch would have to be some sort of Eastern fish pie with an glass of Ontario wine. The dinner would have an appetizer of wild smoked salmon from the West coast and a piece of Alberta beef served with a glass of BC wine. There you have it!

This weekend please take a minute to eat something grown and/or produced in Canada. Don’t just assume that because it comes from a store in Canada that it is Canadian. Ask the sales person and if they don’t know push further to find out where your food comes from. Hey, or just buy local produce. We have many farmers right now trying to sell their goods, so support them.

On another note, we are very lucky to be living in Canada right now. I am not a very patriotic person, but I sure appreciate the fact that we are seen as a somewhat peaceful first world country, especially post-Afghanistan. Our troops are fighting a war that we may or may not believe in, but nevertheless they are representing us and they won’t have the chance to eat good Canadian food this coming weekend. So let’s all get together this weekend and raise our glass of Canadian wine to the people serving our great country, Canada.

Happy Canada Day!


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About the Author

Kristin Peturson-Laprise is a customer experience specialist by trade, which means she is someone passionate about people having a good time. 

Her company, Wow Service Mentor, helps businesses enhance their customer experience through hands-on training, service programs, and special event coordination.

Kristin enjoys her own experiences too, and that is what she writes about in this column. She and her husband Martin Laprise (also known as Chef Martin, of The Chef Instead) love to share their passion for food and entertaining.  

Kristin says:

"Wikipedia lists a gourmand as a person who takes great pleasure in food. I have taken the concept of gourmandise, or enjoying something to the fullest, in all parts of my life. I love to grow and cook food, and I loved wine enough to become a Sommelier. I call a meal a success when I can convey that 'sense of place' from where the food has come . . . the French call that terroir, but I just call it the full experience. It might mean tasting the flavours of my own garden, or transporting everyone at the table to a faraway place, reminiscent of travels or dreams we have had."

 

E-mail Kristin at:  [email protected]

Check out her website here:  www.wowservicementor.com

 



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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