Here at Jumpstreet, one of the many ways we celebrate our Canadian roots involves getting together with our loved ones and eating copious amounts of pie-based food. We call this wonderful feast Thanksgiving, and we celebrated it last weekend.
The Canadian and US Thanksgivings have a lot in common. They're both public holidays; they share themes and mythology. There's turkey, and football. One common theme is abundance: Autumn harvest in Canada yields a variety of root vegetables, and potatoes, pumpkins and squash are staples that inspire countless mouthwatering dishes. Turkey is literally and figuratively a centerpiece, and while today its generally a farmed product it was originally one of many animals that were hunted in preparation for the long and sometimes unforgiving winter months.
Jumpstreets native Québec likes to bring its own flavour to the traditional Thanksgiving dinner table, one that incorporates elements of the Provinces French and English roots. You might find maple syrup in a recipe or two, though this runs like a rich vein through virtually every festive meal on the calendar. You might also find yourself salivating over a slice of tarte au sucre or sugar pie, though this too isnt exclusive to Thanksgiving throw-downs.
To truly embrace a Thanksgiving a la Québecoise you need look no further than cipaille. A rich pot pie of root vegetables and game meats, cipaille is the kind of French Canadian soul food that brings families together in celebration of the hunt and the harvest. Originally known as sea pie to 17th Century British explorers in need of a hearty, portable meal, the dish became cipaille when it was adopted by early French Canadian communities for a similar purpose.
To truly embrace a Thanksgiving cipaille you need look no further than Jumpstreets very own Alexis Biron. His familys recipe started with his great grandmother, Bernadette, who used to make cipaille for her ten children on their farm in St-Alphonse, Gaspésie, during hunting season in October. Today, Alexis makes it for Thanksgiving.