Are you clued up when it comes to Canadian cuisine or is maple syrup the only thing that springs to mind? Don’t worry, you’re probably not alone if it is.
Fortunately for those of you scratching your heads, KARRYON got the head chef of Canada’s iconic train journey Rocky Mountaineer Jean Pierre Guerin to shine a little light on the matter.
Guerin began his career at five-star hotels and restaurants across France, Canada and the Caribbean. He was also executive chef at Pan Pacific Hotel’s Five Sails Restaurant in Vancouver, at Lalique Restaurant in Hong Kong and worked as head chef for the prestigious British Columbia Club.
So, does maple syrup deserve Canada’s foodie crown?
According to Guerin, it is definitely the one Canadian food that all travellers should try if they are on the east coast. However, he stressed that it “doesn’t represent the food of Canada”.
In the west, he suggested travellers should be sure to sample some spotted prawns which come from British Columbia.
However, Guerin stressed that it’s hard to reduce the national cuisine to a handful of dishes or flavours.
“The type of food we eat in the east and eat in the west is entirely different,” he told KARRYON.
“Eastern Canadian cuisine is more influenced by Europe, much less by Asia.”
Jean Pierre Guerin
Meanwhile, fusion food is far more commonplace in the country’s west in places like Vancouver, he said.
So what kind of dishes do they serve up aboard Rocky Mountaineer trains?
Expect to come across ingredients like algae, a nod to the proximity to the Pacific Ocean, as well as Albacore Tuna.
Rocky Mountaineer’s signature dish is a braised beef short rib, cooked for six hours in a sauce of red wine, onions, garlic and tomatoes.
“It rests for a while and then is vacuum packed and rethermalised after that on the train,” Guerin explained.
“It melts in your mouth.”
Jean Pierre Guerin
The rail operator has also tweaked its onboard offering so that vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options are built into all of its menus.
Have you tried Canadian cuisine before?
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