Canada brings home the goodies...

It seems like a gazillion years ago, but there was actually a time when I thought that my mother adding a slice of apple, and two tiny black peppers to make my chapatti ( a round flatbread), look like a face was all the fuss one could create around food. Then the food stylists invaded the planet, and no longer was the human race content with filling their innards with mere nutrients. Food had to look far more glamorous than your average size zero model of the season to even remotely stir the appetites of an experienced gastronome.

Your food had to come to your table hissing in anger, or even throwing up flames. The least it could do was wear a curled parsley hat, and an intricate tomato necklace. Never mind that the food vanished if you even looked at it long enough. Helpings got smaller, as styling itself became an art.

Somewhere though, the food lover in me, begged for substance. I liked food that you had to hold up with two hands, food that clogged arteries, food that was robust and demanded severe physical activity from your body. Real food.

And then, Canada intervened. They also chose a rather easy on the eye celebrity Chef Louis Charest to be the face for this long awaited celebration of real food. And so it was that I stumbled out of Wonderland and travelled a few light years to South Mumbai, for a media only event at the Taj Mahal Palace, a sort of prelude to the ongoing Canadian food festival being held at the legendary Shamiana restaurant. Chef Louis marched in, looking a bit unsure of where he was, but seemed to gather his mien as soon as he entered the space that was to be his kitchen for the live demo. But he sparkled in his true form when he did a quick verbal walkthrough of the elaborate buffet menu served that day. His eyes seemed to light up at the names of certain dishes, and he seemed a bit amused by his surroundings. Instantly likeable, and a bit shy, he seemed a person far removed from the never ending list of his culinary achievements.

But let’s digress. For Chef Louis wasn’t the only one representing his country’s rich culinary tradition at the event. The thing you notice about Canadians is their sparkling eyes. That is till they start talking. Then, their sparkling wit takes over. And I like people who let the happy bubbles go to their head. And when the Canadian diplomat commented, that watching his country’s Blueberry Ale being served in cocktail glasses was what assured him that the festival will be fun indeed, I knew that the signature Canadian humour was out in full force.

If an ordinary Canadian Black Bear can inspire an author to create the character of “Winnie the Pooh”, you can very well imagine what a splendid storm of ideas  a collection of cute Canadian men, a couple of incredibly talented Canadian musicians, and a hot Chef coming together will create.
Apart from the fact that your ego will get a mega-boost from being cooked for by one of the most celebrated Canadian Chefs, you will be fuelling yourself with some seriously sinful goodness all the way from the other side of the world. Think Maple toffee on snow, French toast, Beignets, Yellow pea soup, Maple ham, Crepes, Cretons and Maple tarts. For the water babies, there is an enviable spread of seafood, including lobster, scallops and salmon. Pair these delicacies with Canadian wines and Canadian cocktails, and you have a story you can proudly tell your grandchildren without the risk of being labelled Cranky Old Hag.

A dream inspiring spread of Canadian Food!
Lobster Pate
Lobster Salad
Moules et crème


Shrimp Salad

The unfortunate thing about the good things is that they just don’t last forever. The Canadian food festival isn’t going to stand around waiting for you to cast away procrastination. So I demand that you get off that forlorn rear, and march it to the Shamiana at the Taj Mahal Palace before 30th March. 

Oh, and what did we eat? This is what. 

1 comment:

  1. Kanada (in punjabi accent) for is maple trees, Reindeers and ofcourse wild Salmon. Glad to know there is more to it :) It is a gorgeous spread beautifully captures by you ofcourse.


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