Slow food in Canada: the neighbor gets crab, lobster, caviar and salmon
A Slow Food menu in New Brunswick reads like a Who's Who of the tastiest seafood delicacies the Atlantic coast in Canada has to offer: crab, lobster, caviar and salmon - fresh or smoked - are on the table. But that also includes such exotic side dishes as ferns. Yes, you have read correctly. In New Brunswick and northeastern New England, one eats ferns - more specifically, the Fiddlehead ferns, which are harvested each spring in the wetlands of New Brunswick and Maine.
The products often come directly from the neighbors, from their own garden as in the Rossmount Inn with chef Chris Aerni or directly from the forest like the ferns. Chris was born in Switzerland and lived with his wife Graziella for many years in Australia before settling in Canada a few years ago. Since then he has been on a mission that has earned him a nationwide reputation as one of the country's best slow food chefs. He represented Canada at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver in the year 2010 and was there to show the astonished guests from all over the world how varied the Canadian cuisine is. It comes quite surprising to light.
On a culinary shopping tour of New Brunswick
We had the great pleasure of being inducted by Chris for a day into the regional peculiarities of New Brunswick cuisine. At a lunch at a small kiosk selling crabs, he tells us what he cares about in his culinary art: fresh produce from the local producer, short transport routes, traditional food of the region and own cultivation of exotic herbs, salads and vegetables in the home Garden. In order to achieve this goal, Chris is constantly on the lookout for local, regional and traditional ingredients that have been used here for centuries and in the case of the Indian population. However, he also draws on new products that, although derived from domestic animals, have only been available in this form for a few years, such as the exquisite caviar from Breviro. He will give us an afternoon's insight into the culinary specialties offered by the St. Andrews-by-the-Sea region, where his inn and restaurant are located.
Lunch at Ossi's Lunch
We stop at Ossi's Lunch, a small street kiosk at a larger parking lot on Highway 1, where the "best seafood in North America" is advertised. I look at Chris questioningly, who laughs and says: “Let yourself be surprised! Here's the freshest seafood from the Bay of Fundy! ”And indeed: the crabs that we eat from the plastic bowl taste fantastic and whet the appetite for more.
Salmon smokehouse by Oven Head Salmon Smokers
Just a few meters away lies the salmon smokehouse of Oven Head Salmon SmokersDebbie Thorne, the owner, shows us how the Fundy salmon is processed. The salmon is delivered daily fresh from the farms, where he is fed mainly with herring, and smoked immediately after the arrival at Oven Head over maple smoke. The salmon receives a particularly fine aroma, which we appreciate during the rest of our journey. Oven Heads salmon keeps popping up on the road, be it in the delicatessens on the City Market of St. John or the menus of the restaurants we visit in the next few days.
Sturgeon from Breviro Caviar
And then Chris shows us something really special: the breeding station for sturgeon of Breviro Caviar in Pennfield, just a few miles from St. Andrews-by-the-Sea. Here a sturgeon is bred, which is already almost extinct: Acipenser Brevirostrum. This species is found only in the St. John River, which originates in northern Maine and flows through New Brunswick all the way to the Bay of Fundy. Since 1967 this sturgeon is on the list of endangered species. Breviro is the only plant in the world where this fish is bred. The animals are brought to maturity carefully and with a lot of tact. The crew of Breviro knows every animal exactly, and only when the females have reached the right age, the caviar is won. It is seasoned with sea salt from the Bay of Fundy, canned and shipped to delis worldwide. A great rarity and delicacy, which certainly has its price: depending on the type of caviar 30 grams of Breviro caviar, that is a portion, between 95 and 143 Canadian dollars.
Slow Food in Canadian
After our visit to Breviro, Chris tells us that slow food in Canada can also be free: “In spring, we go out into the damp areas in the forest. Then the young ferns of the Fiddlehead Ferns sprout from the ground there. We harvest these as long as they grow fresh from the ground. Fiddlehead ferns are also available in local supermarkets for a few weeks. We use it to make fresh lettuce as a side dish or cook it like vegetables. ”Although we are unable to try the ferns ourselves because we are traveling at the wrong time of year, we also enjoy fresh ingredients from the forest because Chris says goodbye with us with the words: "I have to leave you now, because I still have to collect mushrooms for your dinner." And we are thrilled by this.
Let yourself be pampered on a road trip through New Brunswick with Slow Food in Canada Rossmount Inn by Chris Aerni or hold on the Old City Market of St. John Look for smoked salmon, fresh crabs or the rare caviar of Breviro.
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Source: own on-site research with the kind support of Tourism New Brunswick and Chris Aerni of the Rossmount Inn St. Andrews-by-the-Sea
Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline