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The Classics

1. Poutine

Honestly, I still dream about it. It is so simple and yet so delicious. Poutine is French fries with gravy and cheese curds and can be topped with a variety of toppings. Poutine originated in Quebec, but is now popular throughout Canada and is considered a national dish. If you wonder if you got the original Quebec version, check to see if your cheese is squeaky. Then it’s the real deal. But I have found that the taste of the sauce can vary from place to place. And “La Banquise” in Montréal is definitely worth the hype (see picture). I’m still wondering how they get the fries the way they are…
But I digress. All in all: Try it!

Garlic Fingers” by knittymarie is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

2. Garlic Fingers

Another greasy and delicious Canadian favorite. Garlic Fingers, also known as Garlic Cheese Fingers, are similar in shape and size to a pizza and are made with the same type of dough. But instead of tomato sauce, there is garlic butter, parsley, and cheese. 

They probably get their name from their shape, because instead of being cut into triangles, they are cut into strips called “fingers”.

Lobster Roll” by neil conway is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

3. Nova Scotian Lobster Rolls

The Canadian province of Nova Scotia is famous for its delicious fresh lobster rolls. Classically, lobster rolls are sandwiches with chunks of fresh lobster meat on a buttered and grilled hot dog bun. The dressing is usually made with mayonnaise, but plain melted butter can also be used.

4. Montréal-style bagel

The Montréal-style bagel or Montreal bagel is a variety of handmade bagels baked in a wood-fired oven. Unlike the New York bagel, the Montreal bagel is smaller, thinner, sweeter, denser, and has a larger hole. The sweetness comes from being boiled in water sweetened with honey before being baked. The most famous places in Montréal to get tasty handmade bagels are St-Viateur bagel and Fairmount bagel.

File:Schwartz smoked meat montreal.JPG” by chensiyuan is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

5. Montréal-style Smoked Meat

Montreal-style smoked meat, Montreal smoked meat, or simply Quebec smoked meat, is a type of kosher meat product made by salting and curing brisket with spices. The brisket is cured for a week, then hot-smoked and finally steamed. It is a variation of corned beef and is similar to pastrami. The long line outside Schwartz’s Deli in Montréal shows its popularity.

peameal sandwich shut” by goodiesfirst is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

6. Peameal Bacon

Peameal Bacon is a wet-smoked back bacon that is rolled in cornmeal. It is primarily produced in Ontario. Toronto pork packer William Davies, who came to Canada from England in 1854, is credited with its development. Peameal bacon sandwiches are often considered a signature dish of Toronto. It consists of bacon served in a kaiser roll with mustard. It is especially popular at Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market.

7. Montréal Hot Dog

The Montreal hot dog is also known as a steamie. The steamie is usually fresh from the steamer and soft and side loading. The steamie hot dog variation has become very well-liked across Canada and is often more popular than the traditional hot dog. Restaurant chains known for their hot dogs include La Belle Province, Valentine, and Lafleur Restaurants. 

In Montreal, hot dogs are generally served in one of three ways:
All dressed (Montreal style):  Hot dog topped with mustard, chopped onion, relish, and fresh coleslaw or plain chopped cabbage. 
Michigan Hot Dog: Hot dog topped with meat, chili sauce, or spaghetti sauce. 
Supreme: Hot dog topped with cheese and bacon. This variation is from Lafleur Restaurants.

grossness” by coffee shop soulja is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

8 Ketchup Chips

It sounds weird, but they are really tasty. I was also very skeptical when I first heard about ketchup chips, but to my surprise, I really liked them.

Something Sweet

9. Beavertails

Let’s get to the sweet stuff. Beavertails are a fried dough pastry sold in a variety of flavors. Most beavertails are topped with sweet condiments and sweets. These include whipped cream, banana slices, crushed Oreos, cinnamon sugar, and chocolate hazelnut. But they also come in savory varieties like poutine or hot dogs.

Old Fashioned Butter Tart” by Nick Harris1 is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.

10. Butter tarts

A butter tart is a Canadian pastry traditionally made with butter, sugar, syrup, and eggs. It is one of the most famous Canadian desserts and is similar to sugar pie and pecan pie.

11. Saskatoon berry pie

As simple as it is, the Saskatoon Berry Pie is a pie filled with Saskatoon berries. The pie originated in the Canadian prairies and is often served as a dessert with vanilla ice cream. The main ingredients are Saskatoon berries, pie crust, sugar, cornstarch or flour, butter, and lemon zest or juice.

Maple syrup popsicle” by JaimeW is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

12. Tire d’érable sur la neige

Also known as maple taffy. It is part of the traditional culture of Quebec, Eastern Ontario, New Brunswick, and Northern New England. In these regions, hot maple syrup is poured onto the snow and rolled up with a small wooden stick or metal fork.

pouding chomeur” by OriginalJo is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

13. Pouding chômeur

Pouding chômeur literally means “pudding for the unemployed”. It is a dessert that originated in Quebec, Canada, during the early years of the Great Depression. Today it is served as a regional dessert.
It is a simple cake batter that is topped with hot syrup or caramel before baking. The cake then rises as the liquid settles to the bottom of the pan, mixing with the batter and forming a distinct layer at the bottom of the pan. Brown sugar, white sugar, maple syrup, or a combination of these can be used to make the syrup or caramel.

salmiakki_schokolade” by mahmut is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

14. Nanaimo Bars

The popular Nanaimo bar is named after the Canadian city of Nanaimo in British Columbia. It is a dessert that does not require baking. It consists of three layers: a base of wafers, nuts (walnuts, almonds, or pecans), and coconut crumbs, a center of pudding cream, and a layer of chocolate ganache on top.

Silver Dollar Pancakes” by Marco Cabazal is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

15. Everything Maple

Of course, you can’t talk about Canada and food without talking about maple syrup. Whether it be on waffles, pancakes, ice cream, toffee, cookie flavor or any of the many other variations. If you are in Canada, you must try maple syrup.

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