Monday, November 5, 2012

Louisbourg Eats

The most delicious-looking cover
in the history of New France.  Fact.
Those Louisbourgeois never rest, do they?  Last month I was reporting on the publication of a novel by the retired A.J.B. Johnston.  Today, I’m excited to announce the publication of a lovely history book cum cookbook written jointly by the site’s current historian, Anne Marie Lane Jonah, and chef Chantal Véchambre.  French Taste in Atlantic Canada – 1604-1758: A Gastronomic History / Le goût Français au Canada Atlantique 1604-1758 : Une Histoire Gastronomique (Cape Breton University Press) expertly layers scholarship, recipes, and images that will make you salivate.  The fact that it does so bilingually, with English and French text side-by-side, makes it all the more impressive. 
I now feel as though it is my historical duty to make and eat a velouté de pissenlit (p. 51), a tourte d’herbe (p. 117), and a morue Sainte-Menehould (p. 149), to name but of few of the recipes that caught my eye.  Call it "peer review".


  1. I have noticed a trend lately, the lover of food that I am, that there are a surge of historical-esque cookbooks put out on the market as of late. One found the other day seeks to recreate dishes from ancient Rome (, and there's even a pseudo-medieval one based on all of the dishes described in the fantasy series "Game of Thrones" ( I wonder if these have always been popular, and people in Louis XIV's court were trying to recreate Gallic Amorican cuisine from the ancient-celtic era.

    Or, perhaps, they are a new phenomena. Which makes my mind begin to turn about why they would be popular - it usually makes me want to turn to ideas about the blurring of cultural lines, or manufactured and prefabricated things permeating in our society, and the desire to get things that are more "Authentic", as we feel like they're lacking in our lives. Perhaps historically themed cookbooks speak to the same part of us that make us want to go to Pioneer Villages, or Renaissance festivals?

    Or, perhaps to go Occam's Razory, I'm simply overthinking it, and really what we all desire is a nice big steaming bowl of fish soup.

  2. If fish soup is your thing, then you probably can't beat the "potage aux deux poissons" after La Varenne (p. 151). ;-)