Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Test blog

Testing automated transmission to my facebook .... let's see if it works

Food is best shared with friends ..... see you again soon at this table André

Friday, July 27, 2012

Whaler Restaurant in Red Bay, Labrador - Best Fish and Chips

I don't know about you, but I like fish  and chips. A nice piece of fish, thinly battered deep fried, crispy chips, some coleslaw and some tartar sauce and we are happy. But what do we usually get?: an over-battered piece of previously frozen fish, soggy fries, a prepared slaw and one or two pre-packed little cups of oily tartar sauce (imitation), right? The price doesn't usually indicate, what we will find in front of us a little later after ordering - to late to be sorry for the decision.

Not here, at the Whaler Restaurant down at the pier in Red Bay, Labrador. Just across of the  interpretation center of Parks Canada that exhibit the early days of whale hunting by the Basques here on the East coast of Labrador.

Entering the restaurant you will find a nice, clean setup and nicely decorated without being tacky. At one side the entrance to the gift shop, at the other a small exhibition of memorabilia of the Grenfell heritage.

This place was recommended to us by a local storekeeper with the suggestion not to miss to try their Fish and Chips. And how right she was: The plate was $ 12.95 and we were assured that we will get freshly caught by a local fisherman Cod with homemade fries. The plate locked beautiful - not overloaded but just nicely presented but more important it was a delight. The fish was fresh, moist and the batter not thick and soggy but light and very crispy. So were the fries accompanied by some homemade slaw and a refreshing tartar sauce.

We didn't get the secret of the batter, but all we know is, that it is a dry batter applied to the fresh Cod after it has been dunked in milk .....

If you ever have the chance to go and visit Red Bay, Labrador don't miss the two places: The National Historic Site about the whale hunting and the Whaler Restaurant - you will certainly remember this day a long time after.

Newfoundland - a good old-fashioned Newfie scoff

The Royal Canadian Legion in St. Anthony in the northern part of Newfoundland is holding a good old-fashioned Newfoundland scoff (and this is not another word for bar fight) ever Wednesday during the summer month. From 4 to 8:30 pm a delicious supper with traditional Newfoundland dishes will be served while enjoying live entertainment.

We just couldn't miss the opportunity to go and we just had so much fun. This Wednesday they served either a Jigg dinner or Fish and Brewis. The Jigg dinner consisted of various root vegetables and a piece of salted pork as for the fish and Brewis was a platter of Cod fish and a re-hydrated bread cake (if you are interested the recipe is at the end of this blog). We enjoyed that these were traditional dishes cooked by regular people like you and I and not "touristified" by a Chef in a "bus-stop restaurant". They were rather bland but there was salt and pepper on the table to season them to our own taste.

Beside this food experience we got Screeched in and became honorary Newfies together with 16 other participants - if you get a chance to become initiated don't push it away! It's called Screeched In from Newfoundland Screech - the rum that's used as part of the procedure. Screech was once a colloquial term to describe almost any cheap high alcohol spirit but now it is a top selling brand of rum.

You have to dress like a Newfie, eat like a Newfie, speak like a Newfie and drink like a Newfie: At the initiation you may end up to be dressed in yellow fishing gear, eating capeling (dry, salted small sardine-like fish), Newfie steak (Bologna ... ) and bread & molasses, bottoms-up a shot of Screech and kissing a Cod. This all while learning to speak like a Newfie. At the end you will most likely take home a bona-fide certificate confirming you as an honorary Newfoundlander.

After kissing a Cod you are certainly ready for another Screech or two .....

Recipe for Fish and Brewis:

How to prepare BREWIS: Split crakes of hard bread, allow one per person. In a large saucepan place hard bread well covered with water and let soak over night. Next day, using the same water, salt to. Taste and bring hard bread to near boil. DO NOT BOIL, DRAIN IMMEDIATELY. Keep hot

To prepare with SALT FISH: Skin dried salt fish, cut fish into serving size, cover with cold water and soak overnight. Next day change water and bring to a boil for 20 minutes or until fish flakes with a fork. Drain, remove fish bones. Combine fish and prepared hard bread (Brewis). Serve with "Scrunchionus" (small cubes of fat back pork fried to golden brown). Use as a gravy over Fish and Brewis.

To prepare with FRESH FISH: Cut fish into serving pieces and place in bake-pot with fat and scrunchoise. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until it is cooked and remove the bones. Combine the coked fish with prepared hard bread (Brewis).

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Quebec - not only la belle provence but also la bonne bouff

One thing that hit me while travelling through Quebec is the little convenience stores (called "Dépanneurs"). Every city, to own and village has them, lots of gas stations are also able to sell food, tickets, smokes but also wine, liquor and beer. The dépanneurs acct as the empty bottle returning places as well as the store, were you may find local artisan products like fresh bread, cheese or more.

Not to say, that there are no chain food stores around - even these ones seem to be offering a much larger variety of products as we are use to. We found one, that had a smoker installed on the parking lot and smoked their version of Montreal smoked meat right there ..... and mmmmmh was it good

More about food in Quebec will follow - stay hungry

I am still around and exploring .... just had a very busy time

You may wondered, why there were new blogs now for a while. Thing's got very busy in my life and while I was still finding new and interesting food-related places and products, I was just not able to create articles. Between quitting my job at the bank, moving out of the rented house putting most of our belongings into storage and equipping a 5th wheel for our long trip time was just running away.

Now we are a little over two weeks into our new life on the road and things start to settle down. Still have to do some catch-up on certain paperwork and on this blog, but I feel that it will get better from here on.

Thank you for hanging in there and still checking this blog out ones a while.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Celebrating Home Grown Food

Canadians have a lot to celebrate when it comes to home grown food. In addition to supporting local farmers and growers when you shop, you can also choose local foods from each of the four food groups.

Vegetables and Fruits: Canada grows a wide variety of vegetables and fruits , including apples, asparagus, blueberries and potatoes. With spring on the way, look for local asparagus, peppers, and greenhouse tomatoes in your neighbourhood grocery store. Remember, vegetables and fruits provide plenty of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and it is important to enjoy 7-8 throughout the day.

Grain Products: Canada produces a variety of different grains including wheat, corn, oats, barley and buckwheat. These tasty grains are full of vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide recommends you make at least half your grain servings whole grains everyday day. Start your day with a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast; substitute whole-wheat flour for white flour when baking, and enjoy whole grain rice or pasta at dinner tonight.

Milk and Alternatives: There are over 13,000 Canadian dairy farms supplying Canadians with milk everyday. Milk provides protein, along with important bone building nutrients like calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and Vitamin D*. For a great snack option, try Frozen Yogourt, its low in fat and made with 100% Canadian milk. Or just a string of cheese as a healthy snack together with a fruit for example.

Meat and Alternatives: Canada produces an abundance of meat and meat alternatives every year. Did you know that Canada is a large exporter of nutrient rich legumes including dried beans, peas, chickpeas and lentils? Legumes are full of protein and fibre which help keep you feeling full longer. Try lentils in a soup or stew, or puree chickpeas to make the base of hummus

Look around next time you go shopping and you will be amazed how much Canadian food is available in the shelves of the stores.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Golden Beef - a healthy, leaner beef alternative

What is Golden Beef? Golden Beef is a unique premium beef product produced by a small group of dedicated farmers in Northern Ontario.

Our cooperative is devoted to producing a healthy, leaner beef alternative. Golden beef are raised without the addition of growth promoting hormones or antibiotics.

Golden Beef is raised on forages such as pasture, hay and silage.

Since no grain is fed to Golden Beef animals, there is no impact on the use of grain for human food and shipping of fee is eliminated therefor reducing the consumption of fossil fuels.

We were lucky to find some Golden Beef at the Delaney Bay Cheese Market here in North Bay and, to try it out, got some shanks and some ground beef. What a great experience: The meat is leaner than conventional beef and tasted different. Since it is from younger animals it is also more tender.

I will certainly go back and get some more in the future. Cooking needs to be adjusted to the difference in fat-content and tenderness.

I invite you to go and try it out - I am sure that you will appreciate the difference.

Food is best shared with friends ..... see you again soon at this table