What are you doing for Canada Day?

A good book and a comfy chair and of course a good glass of redWell I will be reading; sat in my comfortable new chair with a big glass of good red wine – thinking Megalomaniac Wines Red Blend Cabernet .  Found a review of this wine in 2011 and fell in love with it, still enjoying it today. Hubby is on call, son is off with his mates to The Forks, wasn’t too sure about it but he is 17 and a responsible lad (I hope). We will be all gathering at my mum and dads for tea at 8pm so I have nearly all day to myself..luxury!

For those non Canadians reading this (wouldn’t that be nice) Canada day or Fête du Canada is on the 1st July and celebrates the uniting of three colonies into what is today’s Canada via the enactment of the Constitution Act 1867, also known as the British North America Act, 1867.  It is a National holiday and celebrated all over Canada.

As I said my celebration is a treat to myself, going to indulge in reading the 10th novel in a series by Michelle Sagara, ‘Cast in Flame’. I have read all of the novels in the series except for this one and there is a new one due out in November this year, Yea! I have been reading Michelle, who is a Japanese-Canadian, for years and have all of her novels. Michelle publishes under three names Sagara, West (her husband’s name) and Sagara West. My favourite books of hers are  of course the Elantra Series . Have you read any of hers, if so which are your favourites?

Six of Michelle Sagara Elantra Series Novels

What would we do without Maple Syrup?

Maple Syrup  - Canada's sweetest tradition

Canadian Maple Syrup

Well without maple syrup what could I put on my pancakes? Seriously though can not imagine a food cupboard without this staple in it. I was brought up on it and so has husband and my son.

For anyone not aware of maple syrup let me give you a brief introduction and some links so you can correct that. Maple syrup is of original aboriginal descent. Although the origins are not clear it is known that the tree sap was collected and then frozen repeatedly, removing the ice so the sugar concentrated in the original sap. This link is  a nice explanation of how it is made. Actually been to the Mclachlan family Maple Syrup Camp and Pancake House ( mentioned in the link) a few years ago, really worth a visit if you are over in Ontaria but only open February to April – always check before a visit.

There is endless possibilities to the use of maple syrup in recipes, this link gives you 57 of them..my favourite is the granola and maple caramel pretzels, whats yours?

One of the things that interests me, is the association of maple syrup to health. It is well-known that it is packed full of anti oxidants and vitamins but did you know it can also lower blood sugar? Maple syrup is lower on the glycemic index than normal sugar. It also has zinc which is necessary for a health immune system and magnesium that is vital for bone health. All in all one of the good foods, always knew that as my mother told me so!!!

1908 Roland Reed Photo of a Ojibwe woman tapping maple syrup

Tapping for Maple Syrup in the early 1900’s

What is your favourite recipe using maple syrup, sweet or savoury? Let me know.