As longtime readers may have noted, Shelley and I do not share a time zone. We trade recipes, reading lists, and wise saws over the Interweb, and every so often we have a chance to share a meal. This time ’round, as Shelley edged away from the west coast and stopped in on an island in the St. Lawrence, we met in view of putting together a post.
We shopped, we cooked, we took photographs, and then we ate. The results of this collaboration are as follows. First, we concluded that “Wild Mushroom Toasts with Goat Cheese & Black Garlic Vinaigrette” are indeed as marvelous as they sound.
Beautifully made bread from a local bakery, an assortment of wild mushrooms — do please include enoki as they turn crispy — the addition of whipping cream and herbs to the goat cheese, and sherry vinegar for the dressing go a long way to making this a meal-worthy starter. Try it. There’s no need for any other course.
Next, we tried “Creton Maison”, a nod to the province in which I live and work. This has the advantage of being incredibly easy to make, and affordable: ground pork or veal, an onion, breadcrumbs, milk, cooked on a low boil and then mixed in a food processor. That’s it, plus a little french pickle or two and a baguette to complete this dish.
The recipes were selected out of Lindsay Anderson and Dana Vanveller’s Feast: Recipes & Stories from a Canadian Road Trip. Such is an appropriate exercise as we celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary. It is also fitting that these are storied recipes. Each meal comes with a tale, a snippet of a five-month long trek in a two-wheel-drive hatchback.
Shelley, Nathalie, and I took a virtual trip to each of the Canadian Capitals at the start of this blog project and while there was no hatchback involved, we too began to get a sense of regional ingredients (Muktuk of the North, the Bread of the Prairies), place-based dishes (Kanadian eggs, Edmonton Butter Tarts, the food sold at the Richmond Night Market) and context-rich recipes that make up Canadian cuisine (CPR Salad Dressing, P.K. Page’s Onion Tart), all delivered to our tables via Canadian literature.
Feast has made the rounds in print, and on radio and television. The coverage has been extensive. For those seeking more of the story behind the meals, this volume began as a blog.
Anderson, Lindsay and Dana Vanveller. Feast: Recipes & Stories from a Canadian Road Trip. Vancouver: Appetite by Random House, 2017.
Text by Alexia Moyer
Photos by Shelley Boyd and Alexia Moyer