6 Totally Bizarre Foods You Never Knew Were Canadian
These 6 bizarre foods are actually Canadian and you need to try them ASAP.
When you ask anyone in the world about foods that were invented in Canada you are almost guaranteed to get the same answer... poutine. In fact, if you ask Canadians the same questions I guarantee a lot of them will give you the same answer too. That's because the classic dish, which tastes like heaven but is actually from Quebec, is definitely the best Canadian food out there. This article isn't about poutine though, its about six other totally bizarre foods that you never knew were Canadian.
Poutine is maybe the best-known part of Canadian cuisine, but what you may not know is that it's not the only one. In fact, from coast to coast, there are a number of foods that are uniquely Canadian. I'm not talking about maple syrup either, I'm talking about weird dishes that have been concocted from the minds of Canadians.
Each of the foods on this list has a deep history in their Canadian birthplace, whether that's in BC, Quebec, or Halifax. They have all contributed not only Canadian cuisine but the culinary world as a whole, weird as they may be. What's most odd of these Canadian food inventions though, is that they are all either dessert or meat.
1. Ginger Beef
This is a popular Chinese take-out item, but did you know it's actually Canadian? It's been widely accepted that Ginger Beef originated in Calgary back in the 1970s by a chef named George Wong. Wong worked at the Silver Inn in Calgary, where ginger beef was first served.
Tourtiere is a type of Canadian meat pie that's older than Canada itself. From the name you can probably guess that this food originated in French-Canada, but did you know it dates back to the 1600s? The dish has since become an important part of holiday dinners in Quebec and other parts of Canada.
3. Puffed Wheat/Rice Krispie Squares
This is now a classic treat based on a cereal that is otherwise a little bland to eat, but it has a deep history in Canada. In Red Deer, Alberta, during the first world war, people were asked to find substitutes for wheat in their recipes. Alfred James Russell who owned a candy store began making a treat with molasses and puffed rice then and it's gotten popular ever since. Now though, it's more often made with marshmallows.
This is a bizarre food item but it's so Canadian that it's actually the official food of one capital city. In Halifax, the thin meaty, dish is just as popular as lobster and is often recognized as the perfect late night snack. It was created by 1970s by Peter Gamoulakos who opened a Greek restaurant in the city.
5. Butter Tarts
Chances are you've enjoyed a butter tart or two in your days, but you may not have realized that the tasty desserts are actually Canadian. The butter tart is said to be a popular treat among Canadian pioneers and was derived from Quebec's sugar pies, border pie from the United Kingdom, and pecan pie in the US. The oldest published recipe for them is from Barrie, Ontario in the early 1900s.
6. Nanaimo Bars
This one is maybe one of the more well-known Canadian treats. It's actually named after it's birthplace or Nanaimo, BC, on Vancouver Island. The treat which requires no baking was first published by Edith Adams in 1953. The same recipe was published in Vancouver by other names that same year as well.
So if you're ever sick of poutine (at that point are you even a Canadian anymore?) and looking for something more bizarre but still uniquely Canadian to try, one of these six foods will satisfy all your Canadian cravings.