Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Dominion Day, 1933.

July 1 ...

Today is Canada Day - or for old Colonials it is Dominion Day, or I guess it could have been called Federation Day. Whatever it represents nationally, today does a reasonable stand-in for Canada’s birthday - the day I salute my Canadian readers and hope every last one of you has a fine, maple-syrup drenched time.

What might a vaguely mysterious arisocratic Frenchman living in England in the 1930’s suggest as an appropriate menu for this day? The Vicomte de Mauduit – the “wandering nobleman” as he liked to call himself – wrote several books on food. In his book The Vicomte in the Kitchen (1933) he made menu suggestions for several important occasions such as “After Eighteen Holes of Golf”, and “When your Husband brings home an Influential Business Friend” and “Before the Races”.

For ‘Dominion Day’ in Canada he suggested:

Canadian Corn Soup.
Canadian Salmon, Sauce Vert.
Poulet Sauté Marengo.
Sweet Corn – Peas Sautés.
Canadian Apple Pie, Maple Cream Sauce.

To assist you on the day, here are his versions of the sauces.

Sauce Vert.
Take some finely chopped tarragon, chervil, parsley, and a little shallot, also chopped. Blanch and pound in a mortar with a little butter, and pass through a hair sieve into some Sauce Hollandaise. Add salt, pepper and cayenne, and stir well.

Canadian Maple Cream Sauce.
Whip one cup of cream stiff. Fold in half a cup of shaved maple sugar. Sprinkle with cinnamon and grated maple sugar on top, and serve at once.

Tomorrow’s Story …

Black Pudding?

Quotation for the Day …

The (apple) pie should be eaten “while it is yet florescent, white or creamy yellow, with the merest drip of candied juice along the edges, (as if the flavor were so good to itself that its own lips watered!) of a mild and modest warmth, the sugar suggesting jelly, yet not jellied, the morsels of apple neither dissolved nor yet in original substance, but hanging as it were in a trance between the spirit and the flesh of applehood...then, O blessed man, favored by all the divinities! eat, give thanks, and go forth, 'in apple-pie order!” Henry Ward Beecher.


8 comments:

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

Happy Canada Day! I'm sorry I passed up the maple sugar at the market the other day - that maple cream sounds lovely!

Mary said...

I'm an expatriated Canadian living in Florida. I was thinking this morning of Canada Day and felt to write in my diary "I like to call it Dominion Day." My thoughts wandering I put Dominion Day into Google and come upon your blog; a gift to me for Dominion Day. Thank you! :)

Lidian said...

What a lovely menu! If only we had the Vicomte in our Canadian kitchen...alas, we are going to celebrate in a much more basic way!

Rochelle R. said...

That cookbook sounds like it would be quite entertaining I wonder if it is hard to find.

The Old Foodie said...

Hello Everyone: I do hope those of you in Canada had a good day. Rochelle - I bought a battered copy of the Vicomte's book on eBay - very cheaply.

srhcb said...

GF's "Five-Years-Old-Next-Month" GSon is half-Canadian, and this is the first year he's understood why he is, and the rest of us aren't, so we let him choose the menu for Canada Day. He wanted dogs and burgers on the grill, (big surprise), so to add an appropriate "ethnic" flair we served them accompanied by french fries with vinegar, gravy or cheese sauce, but NO ketchup!

Kimberly Ann said...

It is disconcerting for Americans traveling to Britain as well. When I was served black pudding on a flight to Ireland, I was aghast to find it as you initially described. It is also surprising to find UK versions of US soft drinks taste very different as well.

The Old Foodie said...

Hello shrcb - and I think in Quebec fries are served with little cheesey bits too? Cant remember the name, but I am sure someone will tell me ...

Kimberly Ann - what the world needs is an English-English travel dictionary for foodies!