One of the most exciting things about visiting a new country is trying out the best local food on offer. As a first time visitor to Canada, you are about to experience a culinary world of freshness and taste that cannot be overlooked. Ask your hotel concierge to recommend a good quality restaurant nearby which can provide you this three-course meal in one sitting. Health warning: before you embark on this foodie adventure, make sure you're wearing expandable or loose pants!
Once you are sitting comfortably at your dining table for the evening, the first thing you must order off the menu is poutine. Poutine, which translates to "hot, holy mess," is a dish combining brown gravy, French fries and cheese curds. This is a rich, hearty dish embraced by Canadians seeking comfort food.
Breaking down the three main ingredients of this dish, the brown gravy is a combination of beef and chicken stock. The French fries need no introduction to a traveling American, but you may never have tried cheese curds before. Cheese curd is a product which occurs when fresh milk is cooked and clotted. Cheese curds taste like a mild cheese but have a springy feel when bitten into. Some say they even "squeak." Some restaurants take the poutine one step further and add grilled chicken or sausage to the dish. However, as this is only your first course, you may want to stick to the original version.
Pair your poutine with an ice-cold beer if you drink, or a soda if you don't. Next, it's onto the main course.
The entree portion of your meal is known as the main course, or "mains," in Canada. For this part of your meal, you must try a piece of Canada's famous salmon. You have two main options when it comes to the salmon you will eat. The first is to order a salmon fillet and have it lightly seared in butter, or poached in a white-wine based broth. Salmon cooks very quickly and will flake easily onto your fork when done.
The other option is to choose a smoked salmon fillet. Smoked salmon is when the salmon fillet has been placed in a smoker with wood chips to infuse the fillet with a delicate smoky flavor. Both options deliver a healthy meal, as salmon is rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids. The fatty acids will help you have a lower risk of heart disease. Considering you still have to choose from the dessert menu, you need all the help you can get.
Salmon pairs well with a white wine. A Sauvignon Blanc or Riesling each has a tart crispness complementary to the taste of salmon.
It's too late to be watching your weight now, so you may as well round out your meal with a delightful Canadian dessert known as a Nanaimo bar. This dessert originates from the town of Nanaimo in British Columbia. There is no cooking involved to make this dessert and it looks similar to an ice cream sandwich.
The bottom layer of the Nanaimo bar is a combination of butter, cocoa, sugar, egg, and cracker crumbs. The middle layer is similar in texture to custard and is made by combining butter and heavy cream. The top layer involves the decadence of melted chocolate. This is a sweet treat, so a little slice goes a long way to satisfying your taste buds.
By combining these three dishes in one amazing meal, you are going to enjoy the finest food Canada has to offer. However, as previously warned, you had better be wearing comfortable clothing before you indulge in these culinary delights. You will find yourself needing to walk off all this deliciousness on your hotel treadmill after digestion has finished. But, that is a small price to pay after enjoying these three new cuisine treats while visiting Canada.
Of course, you aren't limited to only Canadian food just because you're in Canada, and if you're there for long you can also check out local ethnic cuisine options like The Thai D'or Restaurant.