Mmmm ....Canada"Mmm…Canada" celebrates our nation in a culinary way: what foods and drinks taste like Canada to you?
That is the question put forward to me from Jennifer from The Domestic Goddess food blog and Jasmine at Confessions of a Cardamom Addict, they are working on Taste Canada - a project asking people what Canada tastes like to them. Great idea, non?So here is what initially came to my mind when I read their email on what reminds one of Canada. Growing up in Ontario we always had an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables in our fridge, in our lunchboxes and on our tables. We ate seasonally and we did a lot of family trips to the 'Green Belt' (mainly St. Catherines) to pick our own fruit at different times of the year. In the fall we went apple picking and in the summer we went strawberry, peach and cherry picking.
It was a day out, it was fun and it was a great way to spend the time with family. It was cheaper to 'pick your own' and the fresh fruit we got was incredibly tasty; am not sure if farmers really made more money as we ate so many strawberries while picking we should've left some extra money! I even forgot my shoes one weekend and went strawberry picking with only my funny slippers. My forgetfulness still continues to this day.
Back to strawberries...on the way to the cottage we picked a few baskets then headed to the beach, swam all day like little sea lions and came back for lunch or dinner to eat more strawberries. At lunch one day we decided to make a strawberry sandwich. I think my cousin Mary or Tami invented this - not sure who can take the credit?
We cut up loads of the little strawberries - they were tiny bulbous and strangely shaped, not the perfect kind you get in the shops today and laid them on freshly toasted bread with melted butter and sprinkled it with sugar. The sweet and the salty mixed with the sugar and the warm bread made it the most excellent and delicious sandwich ever. What an invention! I should sell these from a little stall somewhere. They are sooo good.
So that was what we ate for lunch or snack almost every weekend (during strawberry season) - a strawberry sandwich. We were picky eaters when we were young so I guess our parents thought as long as we were eating something why not a strawberry sandwich for lunch!
I made one the other day for the blog and it was good, but the strawberries were nothing near the ones that you get in the Niagara St. Catherines - Canada's fruit belt. I can't wait to have another strawberry sandwich at the beach again - will have to show my nephews how to make one so the tradition continues.
Happy Canada Day for all reading this on July 1st!