This month’s #SFATW theme is a food guide to everyone’s respective country! I’m very excited to be voicing my favourite Canadian foods (there are a lot of desserts, which hush we’re not going to talk about). Anyway!
To find out more about Souvenirs from Across the World, hosted and organized by the amazing Marie @Drizzle & Hurricane Books, click here. Subscriptions/sign-up for the Souvenirs in your Mailbox is now open! Also, you can find her Food Guide from Alsace here.
Now, let me just say, Canadian food is a funny thing. There’s no *one* dish that is quintessentially Canadian, so I’ve made a list of food that A. I (a Canadian) have actually eaten, and B. Wikipedia defines as Canadian, because it never hurts to have Wikipedia on your side.
Without further ado, the list:
~~ Icewine ~~
The Niagara region of Ontario is very popular for their wineries, and in particular, their Icewines. Icewine is a dessert wine (and a very good one, if I do say so myself), made from grapes that naturally freeze on the vine, and are then fermented. Obviously it’s not exclusive to Canada (Germany has a big reputation for their Icewine as well) but it is a staple of my province.
~~ Nanaimo Bars ~~
Nanaimo bars originated in a city in British Columbia called (you guessed it) Nanaimo. It’s a dessert that doesn’t need to be baked, and consists of three layers of heavenly goodness: a base layer of crumbs (which in my experience, usually has coconut flakes in it), a layer of “custard flavoured butter icing” (thank you Wikipedia, I never would’ve known how to describe that), topped off by melted chocolate. It’s usually served cold, and will literally melt in your mouth.
~~ Butter Tarts ~~
I swear, we do eat things other than desserts. I may not be proving that with this list, but you’ll have to take my word for it. That said, butter tarts are probably my third favourite dessert, which should tell you that I am very in favour of butter tarts. We have butter tart festivals, butter tart taste-offs, butter tart tours. There’s a really small bakery up north that makes THE best butter tarts I’ve ever had in my life, and so one of the highlights of going camping every year is basically binge eating butter tarts. I have no shame.
~~ Maple Syrup ~~
Never have I been more disappointed in my life (well, objectively) than when we went to the UK to visit my dad’s family, and we brought them maple syrup, only for me to innocently wander down a grocery store aisle one day to find a maple syrup section. I thought it was OURS! But we do live in the modern world where people, like, import and export goods, so maybe that one was on me. Anyway, maple syrup is another Canadian staple. Maple syrup + pancakes is life. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. Also, Maple Fest is really big in my hometown, Canada produces 71% of the world’s pure maple syrup, and the maple leaf is on our flag, so obviously it has to make this list!
~~ Beavertails ~~
Before you ask, no silly, not actual beaver tails. It’s a chain name that makes these fried dough pastries that are in the shape of a beaver tail. They kind of sound gross, but I’m here to tell you: they’re delicious. There’s a lot of different choices as far as toppings go (each more sinfully indulgent than the last), but I like the classic cinnamon and brown sugar.
~~ Apples ~~
This isn’t so much a staple, but rather something I associate with where I grew up. My small town is surrounded by apple orchards (I think there’s probably at least five within a fifteen minute drive), so it’s obviously not unwarranted. I also grew up with my mum making homemade apple crisp (yay, more desserts!) and apple sauce after we would go apple picking, and since it’s that time of year, I think I’m being particularly reminded of how much I love apples. And, fun fact, the ambrosia apple originated in British Columbia!
~~ Tim Horton’s Double Double ~~
If you didn’t already know, Tim Horton’s is basically the powerhouse coffee and donut chain in Canada. They have other fast food, sure, but if you were to go up to any Canadian and say the words “double double,” they’d know exactly what you were talking about. I’ll let you in on the not-so-secret: it’s just a coffee order. Two cream/milk, two sugars. There’s a credit card named after it. There’s a book about it. Basically, if you want to impress a Canadian, suggest you go get a double double from Timmies. You’ll get instant brownie points every time.
~~ Poutine ~~
Let me tell you something: it is a sin to go to Québec and not eat poutine at every chance you get. It’s fries + cheese curds + gravy. If that doesn’t have you salivating, I don’t know what will. There’s even a place near my uni that makes 150+ different types of poutine (including dessert poutine, as you were probably wondering). It’s another Canadian staple, and. You. Must. Try. It.
So that’s it for Canadian food! In conclusion, this has made me very very hungry. Happy Friday!