Category Archives: Cuisine

Our Culinary Treats

In rural Newfoundland & Labrador “Sunday Dinner”, “Hot Dinner”, “Cooked Dinner” and “Boiled Dinner” are common terms used in reference to a meal at noon on Sunday.

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I will share with you how to prepare Sunday’s Dinner, since it is my favorite traditional Newfoundland meal. It is chicken or turkey with stuffing, potatoes, carrots, turnips, greens, cabbage, potatoes, gravy, peas pudding and our famous salt beef. We also have a selection of other puddings that may be served with the meal: bread pudding, raisin pudding (locally referred to as “figgy duff”), molasses pudding, blackberry, partridge berry and there are many others! My grandmother makes the best raisin puddings and molasses puddings. Yum!

SUNDAY DINNER

  • 1 Whole Chicken, Turkey, Moose Roast or other meat product
  • 1 cup yellow split peas
  • 6-8 medium potatoes
  • 6 carrots
  • 1 medium turnip (peel and slice)
  • 1 medium cabbage (cut in wedges)
  • Slices of slightly stale bread
  • Onion
  • Ground Pepper
  • Salt
  • Spices (thyme, basil or rosemary)
  • Butter
  1. Prepare stuffing by soaking slightly stale bread in water. Squeeze to remove excess water. Add melted butter, salt, black pepper and seasoning (basil, rosemary or thyme).
  2. Prepare chicken or meat, lightly salt. Place stuffing inside chicken, excess can be wrapped in foil. In a roasting pan, place chicken and add water. Cook on 350 F, lightly baste and add an onion for flavour.
  3. Soak salt meat overnight, drain and place in large cooking pot. Tie peas in cloth bag (locally referred to as “peas pudding bag”); however, a mason jar with a few holes punched at the top will also be sufficient. Put peas in pot with salt beef. Cover beef and peas with water. Heat to boiling, cover and simmer for 2 hours.
  4. Prepare vegetables. Small carrots and potatoes may be left whole, larger ones are to be cut in half. Slice turnip and cut cabbage into wedges. After meat and peas have cooked for 2-2.5 hours add vegetables and cook until tender, adding the cabbage last.
  5. Remove peas from bag, place in bowl and mash with butter and black pepper to make peas pudding.
  6. Remove salt meat and slice. Remove vegetables and place on platter and serve.

FIGGIE DUFF

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup milk or water
  • 1 cup of raisins
  • Pinch of salt

Combine dry ingredients, add milk and egg. Put in a cloth or spring container and boil for two hours.

MOLASSES PUDDING

  • 1 cup of molasses
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 3 cups flour

Mix together molasses, sugar and spices in a bowl. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to first mixture, then add melted butter and raisins. Mix well. Add sifted flour a little at a time. Put in greased pudding mould and steam 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Many great talks or yarns happen around the kitchen table in rural Newfoundland, both in the past and still today.

Hope you enjoy!

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Squashberry Jelly & Dark Tickle Tea for Breakfast

On a recent visit with my Grandmother Pearl, she gave me a bottle of her homemade squashberry jelly. I truly love this stuff! This morning, I’ve been able to enjoy it with a mug of Dark Tickle’s Crowberry Tea. The only thing missing, was a nice hearty slice of homemade bread.

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When you experience the Great Northern Peninsula, visit Dark Tickle Company in St. Lunaire-Griquet, en route to L’Anse aux Meadows World UNESCO Site (Viking Settlement). If you are interested in tasting squashberry jellies, jams and spreads, you can buy them on-line at www.darktickle.com.

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One of the many wonders on the Great Northern Peninsula.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

 

 

Baked Beans and Buttered Bread is a Traditional Scoff

What a delicious traditional meal yesterday’s supper turned out to be with homemade baked beans and a slice of homemade bread. Normally it would be beans and bologna (“Newfie steak”), but we substituted for ham and Zest mustard pickles.

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The one meal I would never eat as a child was baked beans, not even to taste them. I even lived and worked in London, England from January to September 2007 where I would get an English breakfast served everyday with a helping of beans. I would not even consider touching the stuff. It was not until a stopover in Belfast, Northern Ireland during December 2007 that I re-call ordering the traditional breakfast one last time before I would return the Czech Republic to complete my studies and then home to Newfoundland for the holidays. On my plate again, were the ever present baked beans, likely predicting their faith of being left behind. However, after rejecting them for twelve straight weeks that summer,  something in me decided I should give them a try, especially when in the UK. It might have been my last time to experience that traditional cuisine. Who knew when I would return? To my surprise, I did not detest them.

Why then for 22 years had I been so unwilling to try them? I guess there are always decisions we make around our likes and our dislikes as children when it comes to food. I never liked spaghetti sauce, just “plain noodles for me”, or gravy, many of the condiments and a few others. Today, a nice helping of well-crafted sauce adds so much flavour and excites the taste buds. There is nothing I can think of now that is an outright NO when I look at a menu or pick up ingredients at  a grocery store. Taste is certainly acquired and if at first you’re not quite sure, then I would suggest to try it at least another time.

Expand and broaden your palate, especially when it comes to traditional Newfoundland foodstuffs.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Missing Grandma’s Raisin Pudding…

I always manage to have a big helping of my Grandmother Mitchelmore’s raisin pudding. It has that great vanilla flavour, bountiful amount of raisins and texture of sweetness, creating a perfect pudding – ones only grandmothers seem to know how to prepare. The raisin pudding during a Sunday dinner at Nan’s house is truly a treat. Maybe the art of food for traditional meals get enhanced by the younger generation over time.

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It has been quite awhile since I’ve had the pleasure of Nan’s homemade soups, puddings, bread and other treats. While on vacation this past August, I got news that my grandmother at the ripe age of 81 years had broken her leg.

My Nan is a very active senior, as she maintains large flower beds, vegetable gardens, does crafts, makes quilts and also does quite a bit of travelling. Although, the past few weeks have been the quiet road to recovery, no doubt in the coming weeks she’ll be back on her feet as busy as ever.

I’m certainly looking forward to sitting with her, chatting and enjoying her traditional meals in the near future. The time we spend with our family in rural Newfoundland & Labrador, will be treasured memories.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

 

A Great Viking Feast for St. Anthony & Area Boys & Girls Club

Saturday, September 28th – Leifsburdir becomes the gathering place for the St. Anthony & area Boys and Girls Club for a Great Viking Feast and annual fundraiser.

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I attended my first fundraiser in September 2011 and missed 2012 as I was in Liverpool, England touring the hometown of the Beatles. However, I was very pleased to come out and support this worthy cause in 2013 and hopefully for many more years to come.

First of all, Leifsburdir, is the only sod hut restaurant in North America. They offer a viking performance of sagas by rein-actors over dinner throughout the summer season. I encourage you to take this experience in while visiting St. Anthony on the Great Northern Peninsula. For more information visit: http://www.fishingpoint.ca/feast.html

The owner gives back each year, by donating their space and providing the meal to all patrons who take in the evenings event. The viking staff also give back by volunteering their talents and providing entertainment. The business community is involved by contributing prizes, including Provincial Airlines providing return airfare to St. Johns for two. The Boys and Girls Club had staff involved and youth helping to serve at each table – coffee, tea and desserts. It is a great sense of coming together for a cause everyone believes in – that is, providing much needed funds to ensure programming can continue and expanded for St. Anthony and area youth.

The club is now in its 13th year and has more than 200 youth registered at its centre. The success of the club, also demands increased supports whether from Government, grants or funds raised from outside sources. The Boys & Girls Club is a charity and can issue a tax receipt if anyone would like to support a local cause. Please contact 709-454-2582 or colleen@stanthonybgclub.com for any further information.

I had a wonderful time and ended up winning a prize. It is great to gather in our unique social spaces, enjoy the talents of those around us and help organizations thrive. If you were not able to take in this year’s event be sure to mark your calendar for the last Saturday in September. It will be a fun-filled evening.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

L&E Restaurant Serving For 25 Years

25 years for many of us is a lifetime committed to serving the public. For my entrepreneurial aunt, well she’s been self-employed in the food service business for nearly 40 years. That is a milestone for any business owner.

Long before the L&E Restaurant moved to its new location in 1988, owner Linda Rose was serving up chicken and chips from her former business, Rose’s Snack Bar. The move was contemplated as a new high school was being built on Route 430 to replace the aging one in Flower’s Cove. The new location, adjacent to Consumer’s Pharmachoice, Brook’s Boutique & NL Liquor Express has driven traffic to this business over the years.

She is a fully licensed restaurant, with a broad menu offering that goes well beyond the original chicken and chips, burgers and hotdogs to include a variety of seafood dishes, soups, sandwiches, salads, turkey, beef, breakfast and other dishes. She also has soft serves, ice creams, sundaes and a variety of coffees.

I’ve been eating treats at L&E for as long as I can ever remember. This past Wednesday, I dropped by for a feed of chicken & poutine. It was more-ish! After the meal, I gave my Aunt a certificate recognizing her 25 year business milestone and wished I could have been there on the anniversary. She told me, it was quite a busy day, with an in-flux of customers as she had a giant cake and offered 25% off all purchases for the day.

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She recognizes the importance of giving back to her customers and community, from customer appreciation day to donating to a local event. Before I left, I was reminded about the 50-50 draw to support the Straits Regional Volunteer Fire Department.

The restaurant has changed a little over the years, from softer color tones, the addition of a fish tank to a gallery of folk art painted by her talented son, Danny Rose. His art work is not only displayed at L&E but in many homes throughout the region, province, country and beyond. It is great to see the passion of entrepreneurship and love for rural Newfoundland & Labrador that exists within our family. However, some things will never change – like the red chairs, the nostalgic jukebox or the atmosphere created by local people loving the food and joining the conversations in one of our social spaces on the Great Northern Peninsula.

Congratulations on 25 years L&E Restaurant! Let’s hope to see many more, as this place has been a local fixture in the region.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

It’s All About Regional Marketing…

In 2010, my mom and I traveled to Ireland. We rented a car and went from Cork-Kinsale-Killarney-Galway-Sligo-Belfast-Giant’s Causeway-Dublin-Kilkenny-Waterford-Wexford-London. Cork is Ireland’s second largest city (about the size of St. John’s, NL), however, just a short distance away is Kinsale, a small town that is known for its food culture. With 2,257 people it is about the size of St. Anthony on the Great Northern Peninsula. The regional marketing had us take the drive to the neighbouring community. It was an experience!

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The Provincial Government has cut its marketing budget by 25%. Despite winning 183 awards and being internationally recognized, the market for the International, out-of-province and local market is highly competitive and stakeholders will have to do more to market their business to maintain their bottom lines. I believe it’s all about regional marketing, let’s pool our resources and develop vacation guides, business directory, updates, mini-sites and more in a modern Viking Trail Tourism website.

Check out how Kinsale market’s itself: http://kinsale.ie/.

The Great Northern Peninsula has many reasons for which one must visit. Here is a short-list:

  • Gros Morne National Park, WORLD UNESCO Site – home to the Table Lands and 155,000 visitors annually.
  • L’Anse aux Meadows, WORLD UNESCO Site – more than 1,000 years ago, the Vikings were the first Europeans to re-discover North America. The only authenticated North American viking site. Nearby, Norstead Viking Village & Port of Trade is home to the replica viking ship, the Snorri. Wonderful cuisine en route: The Daily Catch, Northern Delight, Snow’s Take-out and The Norseman Restaurant.
  • Community of 50 Centuries, Bird Cove – for more than 5,000 the Maritime Archaic Indians, Paleo-Eskimo, Gros-Water Eskimo and recent Indians. As well, a Basque presence and Captain James Cook cairn. Port au Choix National Historic Site has unique interpretation of archaeology and history.
  • The French Shore (Petit Nord) – Conche’s Interpretation Centre is home to a 222 ft tapestry depicting the French history, the Granchain Exhibit is found in St. Lunaire-Griquet
  • Grenfell Historic Properties - highlights the legendary Sir Doctor Wilfred Grenfell, his International Association, residence and his economic development through the co-operative process. Grenfell Historical Foundation and Handicrafts remain an integral part of the continuing story. Grenfell Memorial Co-op is the Newfoundland & Labrador’s oldest consumer co-op. Nearby are the Jordi Bonet Murals, Northland Discovery Boat Tours, Polar Bear Exhibit & Fishing Point Park.
  • Burnt Cape Ecological Reservehome to more than 300 plants, 30 of which are rare and one Burnt Cape cinquefoil, which the Great Northern Peninsula is the only place in the world where this species grows. Raleigh is also home to a fishing village and carving shop.
  • Leifsbudir – The Great Viking Feast is the only sod restaurant in North America, built into the rock of Fishing Point, St. Anthony
  • GNP Craft Producers – a unique gift shop that makes seal skin products and shares the history of seal skin boot making. In nearby Flower’s Cove one will find “Seal Skin” boot church. The community is also home to thrombolites (existing on just a few places on earth).
  • Deep Cove Winter Housing Site - a National Historic Site is an open air museum which highlights the way of life residents experienced in both summer and winter living. It is south of Anchor Point which is home to the peninsula’s oldest consecrated cemetery.
  • Torrent River Salmon Interpretation Centre - the Interpretation centre in Hawke’s Bay is a must for the salmon enthusiast. Beyond the mighty Torrent, many salmon rivers exist in Main Brook. Roddickton-Bide Arm is a great place to also participate in recreational hunting and fishing, it is home to the natural Underground Salmon Pool.

An array of walking trails, nature, wildlife, icebergs, whales, recreational hunting and fishing, picturesque outport communities, attractions, shops, restaurants,  crafts, festivals, events,  local culture and heritage and people who will make any visit a treasured experience on the Great Northern Peninsula. We make need to take a page out of Kinsale’s book, and work as a region to pool our marketing resources and create a more dynamic on-line presence that takes in our region’s unique offerings!

Experience the Great Northern Peninsula & start planning your vacation today!

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Marketing Outport Newfoundland & Labrador

Newfoundland & Labrador has marketed ‘outport’ or rural parts of the province in its award-winning tourism ad campaigns.

Innovative rural companies like Auk Island Winery in Twillingate are continuing to add flavour to the tourism experience. Newfoundland & Labrador takes pride in its unique local berries, such as patridgeberry, bakeapples, squashberries, as well as our very own Screech Rum. This company typically makes berry wines and sells quintessentially on Newfoundlandia.

I have tried bottles that are called, “Moose Juice”, “Krooked Cod”, “Jellybean Row” and “Funky Puffin”. I believe part of my purchasing of this product is curiosity, but primarily to support a local business that prides itself in all things Newfoundland & Labrador.

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The imagery on Outport Wine, which includes an iceberg, outport boats and fishing rooms. The splash of Screech just adds to the authenticity and certainly begins the storytelling process.

This season I hope to tour Auk Island Winery and taste many other wines they have produced in various shapes and sizes. Let’s keep being creative and expand the rural economy and our visitor experiences as we celebrate traditional and modern-day outports.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

A Scoff at the Cabin…

I woke up at 5 AM today, the wind was howling and the weather temperature rang in at -20 degrees. The windchill made it feel like -37 degrees outside. It is on days like these I think of the warmth of the old wood stove, a nice cup of tea and fond memories at the cabin.

Every Christmas we draw family names on my Dad’s side where 7 families exchange presents with one another. This year, my Aunt Linda gave us presents. She gave my mother a lovely print our cousin originally painted of “A Scoff at the Cabin” in February 2008.  Depicted below are many of Newfoundland & Labrador‘s favourites, from Purity Hard Bread, Lemon Cream Biscuits served up with some Eversweet Margarine, Purity Jam, Homemade Bread, “Newfie” steak (bologna), a cup of tea with Carnation Milk, a shot of Newfoundland Screech and for dessert some Purity spearmint knobs.

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A cup of Tetley tea in the woods simply can not be topped! There must be something about the purity of the water flowing from the brook  and then boiled in a cast iron kettle over an open fire. While thinking about the cabin, I was able to enjoy a nice cup of hot chocolate from one of the mugs my aunt also gave me for the holidays. A wonderful glimpse of another Newfoundland tradition of Christmas Mumming! I had the pleasure to dress up for the 3rd Annual Mummer’s Walk, spent a night mummering in my home community and attended the Mummer’s Dance in Flower’s Cove dressed up with the gang (a post to follow).

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I like many Newfoundlanders & Labradorians enjoy our foodstuffs and traditions that are quintessentially ours. I thank my thoughtful aunt for the presents as she knows how much I love consuming culture.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Rabbit with Sunday’s Dinner

Newfoundland & Labrador has a traditional Sunday’s Dinner with some form of meat, potatoes, turnip, carrot, cabbage (greens when available), peas pudding, salt meat, puddings and gravy.

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Sunday’s Dinner is a meal that us rural Newfoundlanders & Labradorians look forward to, especially if grandmother is cooking it. A near mornings work with many pots, pans and hands in the kitchen serves up a delicious meal.

The rabbit was snared during last season. I look forward to getting a fresh  one as this past weekend a light powder of snow fell on the Great Northern Peninsula. My father would spend a week or two after Christmas with his buddies in what we referred to as the rabbit camp, as it was located way inside the country. Each year, he always brought back a good bounty of rabbits for our family and his parents. I remember when I was younger, going in the woods with him to check his slips. He showed me how he set up the snares and how to increase your chances of catching a rabbit.

I do not eat rabbit that often, and still today only enjoy the legs. So there will be no fighting for the head when I sit at your table, as is in most cases. One memory that comes to mind when I eat rabbit, is off my late Uncle Douglas. He spent many hours in the countryside, trapping, snaring and berry picking. He would always supply me with a rabbit, either bringing it to my house  or  I would be equally as happy to go to his small trailer to pick it up. He may have been hard to understand at times, despite at times calling me or others a “Frenchman”. I believe this was his ironic sense of humour and whenever he was around he was a mountain of local knowledge as he knew the daily catch of local fishers and other happenings in the community. He would always ask if I spotted a moose or caribou on my drive from work and listening attentively for the answer with details. Uncle Douglas was a gentle man, who loved children and gave freely of what he had to the benefit of others. I miss sharing those conversations with you, but still enjoy a feed of rabbit whenever I get the opportunity.

RIP Uncle Doug.

I hope when traditional food is placed on your table, you can think of a memory, occasion or person that brings a smile to your face.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Traditional Newfoundland Cuisine – Rabbit

A visit to my Grandmother from Nameless Cove after being in the cabin was quite the treat. A wonderful meal of wild rabbit, stuffing, peas, carrots, turnip and potatoes – all topped off with gravy. I enjoy this traditional meal as it brings back memories.

As a young boy, I would go with my father to check his slips (or rabbit snares). We would go on his Yamaha Bravo! He had the skill to well place a slip, adding twigs or tree limbs to ensure the rabbit would have to hop through the hole. Sometimes we would take our snowshoes to prevent us from sinking too deep into the snow.

My uncle Douglas, who has since passed. He would spend a significant amount of time in the woods, whether it would be trapping, rabbit catching or berry picking. I would be assured that there would be a rabbit or two for me each season.

For me it is important to now learn the process of rabbit catching from my uncles who continue this tradition. I must learn these skills to pass on to future generations. As well learn how to skin a rabbit and prepare the meal.

For me it is important to learn the ways of the land, that has enabled people to survive for thousands of years – well before the Vikings came more than 1,000 years ago to this Peninsula.

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

 

 

 

A Feed of Moose Meat in the Woods

A little salt and a shake of pepper at the flavour to savour as I cook the moose patties and thin moose steaks. The result – A double moose cheese burger, steak and well we had some hash browns as a side. This is not a menu item you will find at McDonalds or other fast food chains in Newfoundland & Labrador. If you are lucky you may find a restaurant or two that actually sells moose on the menu. This is surely not for lack of demand. Moose Burgers are a hot item at Jackladder Gas Station outside Deer Lake on Route 430 or the MayFlower Inn & Adventures, Roddickton, NL.

Since we had an extra burger we opted to share between the three, creating the 1/3 burger not the 1/3 pounder or 1/4 pounder but the 1/3 burger. Maybe these will catch on with a toothpick as a party appetizer?

The Great Northern Peninsula would not be the place it is today without a feed of moose. We have to be careful, and may need to reduce licences in the Straits-White Bay North as moose are getting scarce. Even in the Moose Capital of the World – Roddickton, there are fewer and fewer moose.

If you get the opportunity when visiting, try a moose burger! Why are moose not being ranched to produce moose meat for retail at supermarkets and restaurants on a larger scale, without impacting the annual hunt?

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Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

A Feed of Fish n’ Brewis

Fish & Brewis is a traditional Newfoundland Specialty. I enjoyed this meal of fish, brewis and boiled potatoes on January 5th, 2012.

I’ll share with you the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 4 Cakes Purity Hard Bread
  • 2 lb salt cod fish
  • 1 cup of salt pork (finely diced)
  • Drawn Butter: 1/4 Cup Butter, 2 Med. Onions (chopped), 2 tbsp Water, 1 Cup Water (Optional)

Soak Hard Bread overnight. Use lots of water. Soak cod-fish in a separate bowl overnight. In the morning change water and cook cod-fish for about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and drain. Put hard bread in saucepan with water to cover and bring to a boil. Remove Hard Bread from heat and drain. Optional Add cooked flaked fish and mix if you would like what is called Fisherman’s Brewis. Keep hot. Fry pork until golden brown and crisp, serve with fish and brews.).

Drawn butter: melt butter in saucepan, add onions  and  fry until golden and soft. Do not brown. Sprinkle flour over mixture and mix thoroughly. Remove from heat. Stir in half water. Place on heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Beat until shiny and smooth. Slowly add remaining water, cook over low heat 2 to 3 minutes. Serve over fish and brewis.

My friends from Europe certainly enjoyed our traditional Newfoundland & Labrador cuisine.

Love Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Newfoundland Bakeapple Cheesecake Recipe

Bakeapple, the Cloudberry or the Chicouté is a delightful wild berry that grows on the marshes of the Great Northern Peninsula, Labrador and other parts of Northerly climates. Late July-early August is a great time to head to the barrens with your jugs and buckets to get some for yourself. The other option may be to purchase them at roadside.

I enjoy the berry in a pie, served with vanilla ice-cream but especially served as part of a Cheesecake. I’ve been using the following recipe for a while and decided to share it with you:

Crust
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar

Filling
16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3 eggs, separated
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour, all-purpose
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup blend cream (10%) or undiluted evaporated milk
2/3 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon rind (zest)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups bakeapple jam or sauce

Bakeapple Sauce
2 cups bakeapples
water
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup water

Crust
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease 9-inch spring-form pan.
- Melt butter, add crumbs and sugar; mix until mixture is moist and crumbly. Press against bottom and sides of greased springform pan. Bake 10-12 minutes at 350°F. Cool.

Filling
Reduce oven temperature to 325°F. Beat cream cheese well. Beat in egg yolks, then add l/2 cup sugar, Dour and salt. Beat well. Add cream, vanilla, lemon rind and juice; beat mixture until free from lumps.

In a clean bowl, beat egg whites until they reach the soft-peak stage. Beat in 1/4 cup sugar and continue beating until whites are stiff but not dry. Fold egg whites into cream cheese mixture.

Pour cream cheese mixture into baked crumb crust and bake at 325°F for 40-60 minutes or until it sets. The mixture will be a bit quivery when removed from the oven, but will set as it cools.

Cool cheesecake to room temperature, apply bakeapple sauce over the top, then refrigerate until serving (preferably 3-4 hours).

Bakeapple Sauce
Simmer bakeapples in a little water until tender, about 10 minutes. Add sugar and simmer another 5 minutes.

Mix cornstarch with enough water to form a paste. Stir into bakeapples and continue stirring until thickened and smooth.

Please visit http://newfoundland.ws for more superb recipes of Newfoundland & Labrador cuisine.

A visit to a restaurant in Newfoundland & Labrador, especially during summer will likely have this berry in a dessert, alcoholic beverage or as a garnish to a main course. Embrace the bakeapple along with so many residents of the Great Northern Peninsula – it truly is a treat that will tantalize the taste buds.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

A Great Viking Feast -Leifsburdir

Most likely the only place in North America where one can eat in a sod hut and enjoy a Great Viking Feast is on Fishing Point, St. Anthony, NL.

Last September 2011, I attended the final feast of the season which was a fundraiser for the local Boys & Girls Club. An incredible meal of meat, potatoes and other root crops. One will quickly notice there are no forks – simply because the Vikings did not use forks. It can be quite challenging trying to eat certain foods without this utensil. Although, one never really thinks about it until he or she does not have it. Funny how we take for granted some of the items we use daily that makes life a little easier.

As that evening progressed we were treated to theatrical performances, music, ballads and even served by people dressed up in Viking attire.

My friend from Switzerland certainly enjoy the walkabout the Leifsburdir and the view of St. Anthony in the backdrop.

The crashing waves and rocky shores are something to see as you walk to the entrance for service. If you can in 2012, you may want to dine and experience a Great Viking Feast on Fishing Point.

Experience the Great Northern Peninsula -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Caribou Stew – Don’t Mind If I Do!

In Rural Newfoundland & Labrador it would not be uncommon to enjoy wild game as part of the regular rotation of meals from the kitchen. Upon returning home we were greeting by a pot of caribou stew – after only hours before experiencing a live herd crossing the main highway. I assure you we did not take any bounty for the road.

A delicious mixture of chunks of caribou meat, celery, potatoes, carrot and turnip. I recommend if you ever have the opportunity while in Rural Newfoundland and Labrador to try caribou.

Experience the Great Northern Peninsula -

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Find Yourself on Bell Island, Newfoundland & Labrador

On January 2, 2012 – My friends & I set out on our first adventure of the New Year. We hopped in the car, drove to Portugal Cove-St. Phillips, after a few minutes waiting in line and a fare of less than $10 return ($6.25 for passenger + car/$1.75 for each additional passenger) we hopped on the MV Flanders and worked our way across the tickle.

The ferry ride is short about 20 minutes on the water ~40 minutes total. If you visit the City of St. Johns, consider adding Bell Island to your agenda as it truly is a stark contrast of life and beauty in itself.

Bell Island was once home to an iron ore mine that made it the second largest populated area, next to the  capital. It has a rich vibrant history, one that may be re-explored  as an announcement came a day or two after our visit that the mine may re-open.

No visit to Bell Island can be complete with at least one visit to Dick’s Famous Fish & Chips. It has been a fixture to the island for 60 years. This is quite a milestone for any small business.

The fish and chips were likely battered with a secret recipe, surely only available to family. I bet the workers are not even privy to such a lucrative combination. Enough for my selling pitch, before I get to a point of exaggeration. :) The fish n’ chips were served golden brown and would not  disappoint as they tantalized the taste buds.

I was quite happy I ordered the three-piece meal, as it truly has been the best fish n’ chips I’ve tasted on the East Coast of the island of Newfoundland & Labrador. There was no choice but to leave satisfied and with a full stomach.

Dick’s Fish and Chips has done a remarkable job of marketing itself as a fixture – one which may have evolved over time. This was present from a wall of cartoons and notes posted in the hallway leading up to the take-out and restaurant seating area as past patrons noted how much they loved “Dicks”.

I have noted before the importance of truly marketing the rural experience. I challenge other retailers and small businesses to find their niche, stand out and create a following that will help you continue adding loyal customers into multiple decades whether you use humour, appeal, facts or some other means to market.

If you find yourself on Bell Island – Do not dare leave without some of Dicks’s Fish & Chips.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North
 
PS. I’ll be  following up shortly with more of our Bell Island Adventure….

The House of the Original Fairmount Bagel – Montreal, QC

There are certain things you must do where you visit certain places – like having a Beaver Tail on the Rideau Canal, drinking a Mojito in Cuba and tasting a crepe in Paris. In Newfoundland & Labrador we have many traditional dishes you should try while here, including:

  1. Split peas soup & dumplings
  2. Lassie Bread
  3. Toutons
  4. Fisherman’s Brewis
  5. Baked beans & hash
  6. Jigg’s Dinner
  7. Fish & Potatoe w/ Pork scrunchions
  8. Rabbit & Paste
  9. Moose Burgers
  10. Caribou Steak
  11. Moose Stew
  12. Fish Cakes
  13. Figgy Duff

During a visit in late-June to Montreal, I was introduced to a traditional taste enjoyed by many Montrealers – the bagel. The overpowering aromas filled the air of freshly baked bagels. There were racks upon racks – several being loaded on a truck to go to market. It was great to be able to purchase directly from the producer at “La Maison De L’Original Fairmount Bagel”.

My friend who lives in Montreal introduced me to this place and also to Smoked Salmon Spread, which we was delightful to the taste buds. Although, I must admit that I was skeptical at first.

It just goes to show sometimes we need to be open-minded. You may realize that by giving something chance you may find a new joy.

Consuming culture can be as simple as eating the sesame seed bagel with salmon dip from a local bagel shop. When you visit a new place, I encourage you to try local foods. As I try to  prepare often local dishes for myself and those who come and visit me in Rural NL.

Bon A petit!

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

 

Deep Fried Ice-cream – A must have treat at the Daily Catch, St. Lunaire-Griquet, NL

On several occasions I have seen Deep Friend Ice-cream on menus at various restaurants and have wanted to try the dessert. However, the portion sizes are often quite large, leaving little room for the sweet delights.

The The Daily Catch Restaurant in St. Lunaire-Griquet, en route to L’Anse Aux Meadows (World UNESCO Heritage Site) specializes in seafood. The food is delightful. In fact, they were even mentioned in the Globe and Mail.

And on the Great Northern Peninsula where the Vikings settled long before Columbus sailed from Spain, a sophisticated little establishment called The Daily Catch in St. Lunaire-Griquet (www.thedailycatch.ca; 709-623-2295) is an oasis of finely prepared seafood. The basil-buttered salmon is on par with the very best in Water Street dining. (Source Article – Click)

This is a true gem of the North, with superior food, excellent menu options, great wine list and the atmosphere to match. I have enjoyed the pleasure of the cook’s culinary skills a few times at this venue. They produce inviting salads, savouring seafood mains and create a happy mood as the traditional Newfoundland & Labrador music plays in the background.

Today was my time to shine - I was prepared and would certainly get my must have treat of Deep Fried Ice-cream today.

I ordered up their Drink of the Day, which was a surprise concoction known only by the server. I was presented with a bakeapple flavoured martini, which had the traditional berries at the bottom and was topped off with real iceberg ice. The iceberg ice really adds to experience, with purity and crackles as the shards gently melt. In 2010, a Youth Ventures participant pursued bagging the shards of icebergs as ice to sell during summertime at a local service station. Why are we not selling the ice on a larger scale? Opportunity knocks.

As I awaited my appetizer – the steamed mussels,  I took notice of the two icebergs positioned perfectly in view of the two windows in front of where I was sitting.

I struck up a conversation with the table adjacent. We talked about icebergs, local area, opportunities, culinary experiences and more. It was so fluent that I did not take a picture of the delicious mussels. However, I would not forget to snap my first trial with delectable Deep Fried Ice-cream.

The dessert menu claimed this is a “Must Have Treat”. It had the option of being served with Partridgeberry or Bakeapple. I am a fan of the bakeapple, as I find the partridgeberry a little tart. Served with whipped cream, a generous portion of local berries and wrapped in a secret coating – certainly makes this a field trip for the taste buds.

A nicely brewed cup of coffee with deep friend ice-cream was a culinary experience. I only wondered if this could have been enhanced, if I added some of my Screech Chocolate Sauce, purchased earlier at the Dark Tickle Company just a short jaunt down the road.

I left the Daily Catch completely satisfied, which is no surprise. So local or  traveller alike, if  you have never tried this treat, you can at this venue for a price of $4.75.

Get lost in a world of experiences on the Great Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland & Labrador.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

25,000 Year Old Iceberg Water Makes the Perfect Brew

Photo: Taken at The Daily Catch, St. Lunaire-Griquet.

The Quidi Vidi Brewing Company located in St. Johns, NL is home to award-winning beers, notably Eric’s Red. I am a fan of the Traditional 1892 Ale. However, since introduced to the Iceberg Beer®produced by this local company, I have a new favourite. My first taste of the sweet bubbly was at The Daily Catch Restaurant, when owner Terry Hedderson provided me with a sample. I was sold from the very first taste!

Quidi Vidi has done a fabulous job setting this beer out from the rest, with a simple white label, long neck and beautiful blue-bottle. The bottle is elegance - as different rays of light hit it, parts change to darker and lighter tones of blue, yet the clarify remains. Once poured in a glass, it is absolutely pure. The senses are peaked with the taste, as it is truly a clean and refreshing beer worthy of its premium price point of $17.98 for 1/2 dozen at a Newfoundland & Labrador Liquor Store/Express. Beware, not all outlets carry it. I have only found this product at Hedderson’s Store, St. Lunaire-Griquet en route to L’Anse aux Meadows. This business carries a large selection of beer and variety of wines, including local products.

If you would like to drink a beer that is Made with pure 25,000 year old iceberg water, then it can be experienced right here on the Great Northern Peninsula.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Take a Walk on the Wild Side – Wild Mussels from the Strait of Belle Isle

I enjoy a pot of delicious mussels at home from time to time. There is something quite awesome about being able to walk just two minutes and be on the beach. It is even better when  the tide is low, allowing you the pleasure to move about the rocks and find wild mussels growing.

I remember once picking mussels with my father in my community of Green Island Cove. He had taken a rake and we were both wearing our long rubber boots. It was near the cemetary, with the water quite deep.  So my father plopped me up on an ice pan to put the mussels he scrapped off the ocean floor into a 5 gallon bucket. We had some very large mussels, much larger than the ones in the image below.

Make a memory when you come to the Great Northern Peninsula – Experience a Mussel Boil by picking your own wild mussels! If you would like to add to the authenticity, use a Salt Beef Bucket to empty your shells.

Dig in & take a walk on the wild side!

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Newfoundland Seal Flipper Pie Recipe

While everyone awaits the development of a local seal flipper food stand., I will share with you all a Newfoundland Seal Flipper Pie Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 2 seal flippers
  • 1 small turnip
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 parsnip, sliced
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 ounce Newfoundland Screech
  • 1/2 lb fat back pork
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • salt & pepper to taste

Dumpling Pastry – Ingredients:

Directions:

  1.  Cut all fat and slag from flippers.
  2. Place them in a deep dish with enough boiling water to cover.
  3. Add vinegar and set aside to cool, then wipe dry with paper towel and place in baking pan or large casserole dish.
  4. Add pepper and salt to taste.
  5. Cover with sliced onions and sliced fat pork.
  6. Dribble Newfoundland Screech over contents.
  7. Cover and bake in pre-heated oven at 375 degrees F for 2 hours.
  8. Boil turnip, carrots and parsnip in 2 1/2 cups of water for about 20 minutes.
  9. When vegetables are ready, place in baking dish with flippers.
  10. Use vegetable water for gravy and thicken with flour.
  11. Make dumpling pastry and pat over flippers and vegetables.
  12. Cover and bake gently until pastry is done. This should take approximately 15 minutes.

Enjoy traditional seal flipper pie.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Molasses Raisin Bread Recipe

Ingredients -

Dissolved yeast in 1 cup lukewarm water, to which the 2 tsp. sugar has already been added.

Ingredients -

  1.  Combine 3 cups of lukewarm water, molasses and melted butter.
  2. Sift dry ingredients together.
  3. Add raisins to dry ingredients.
  4. Stir dissolved yeast into molasses mixture.
  5. Stir flour mixture into molasses mixture and knead for 10-12 minutes.
  6. Place in a greased bowl and let rise until it doubles in size, which will take approximately 2 1/2 hours.
  7. Divide dough to form into loaves.
  8. Place in greased loaf pans and let rise for 1 hour.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour. Baking time may vary.
  10. When you take hot bread from oven, remove from pan, grease with butter and let cool.

Enjoy Your Molasses Raisin Bread!

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Jumping Bean Blueberry Tea

I look for products that are Made Right Here, in Newfoundland & Labrador. Sometimes, I am able to find them when I catch NTV‘s Danielle Butt on her weekly segment, Made Right Here. However, on this occasion I was at visiting Gros Morne Cabins and Endicott’s Convenience in Rocky Harbour. This business has a wide-retail selection of food items, convenience goods, camping supplies, crafts, tour options, information and some locally made products. I found Jumping Bean’s Blueberry Tea.

I enjoy the local berry teas, especially the ones I have sampled from the Dark Tickle Company, St. Lunaire-Griquet (one of our many Northern Pen Gems). You may purchase their product online by visiting www.darktickle.com.

This particular tea caught my attention as it was loose tea. Only a few weeks prior my grandmother told me how the tea they would get came in wooden boxes. It was loose tea leaves packed in a foil to protect it from getting damp. I’ve had loose tea before when I was in Egypt, but never prepared a pot myself.

I got a chair, my arms extended to the top shelf of the cupboard to carefully pull out a tea-pot that my mother received as a wedding present more than 30 years ago. She has an exceptional memory and told me the people who gave her and dad the present. It is remarkable! She remembers birthdays, telephone numbers and other every life events. If an elephant never forgets, my mother is like an elephant. However, that may be the only similarity as she has quite the petit figure.

I normally would have asked my mother how to make this stuff; however, she is not a tea drinker. I am not sure if she has ever had a cup in her life. My father, on the other hand would always have a cup of Tetley with his morning breakfast meal. Since this was my first preparation, I looked at the directions, which read:

Directions: Place the desired amount of tea leaves in the tea sac and twist the top to close. Steep for 4-5 minutes in freshly boiled water and enjoy!

Somehow, I feel the directions should be written with more structure to appease the novice tea drinker. I really had no idea how much of the stuff I should be throwing in  and what amount of water to use. Some recommendation would be nice, in combination with…. or as your tastes desires.

In the end, I must have done something right as my cup of tea turned out to be a hit. It had natural berry flavours that were silky smooth and relaxing. I look forward to another cup of tea with my raisin cake in the near future.

If you would like to find out more about Jumping Bean, you can visit them on the web at www.jumpingbean.ca. They also make a variety of coffees, which include East Coast Roast and my personal favourite, Newfoundland Screech!

If you have the chance, pour yourself up a cup of loose blueberry tea from Jumping Bean.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

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