Upper Canada Village will host over 30 food vendors at a new culinary event Saturday and Sunday, August 17 and 18 to showcase some of the best of the region’s local food and beverage producers.
Food lovers will have a “Field Day” sampling and shopping in an outdoor farmers’ market, all located in the fairground field found in the heart of Upper Canada Village.
This eclectic collection of over 30 food, wine & beer artisans and producers will be serving up the flavours, aromas and medleys of nature’s bounty from across Ontario.
Visitors to the Village will want to bring along a thirsty appetite, to not only sample and enjoy Ontario wines, local craft beer as well as other non-alcoholic beverages, but also to savour the flavours of regional foods such as artisan cheese, signature pizzas, Scottish shortbreads, brick-oven baked bread, home-style baked goods, health foods and mixes, seasonal apples and berries, market-fresh greens, herbs and vegetables, smoked meats, syrup and honey products, pickles, preserves and sauces, chocolate specialties, gourmet popcorn, peanuts and fudge, oils, garlic products, as well as a variety of ethnic foods such as Indian, Thai, Ukrainian, Greek, Mexican and more.
Upper Canada Village invited Cornwall’s Schnitzel’s European Flavours Restaurant Chef Troy Paquette to create a signature “Upper Canada Village” pizza in a 19th century beehive oven located in the yard of Cook’s Tavern. The individual size thin-crust “Heritage Wheel” pizzas will be made right before your eyes using Upper Canada Village flour, Village-made cheese, and heirloom ingredients as found in the Village gardens.
Two local food experts – Dwight Saunders a Raw Gourmet Chef, Teacher and Wellness Consultant for Aura Culinary Arts of Iroquois will be presenting demonstrations on ‘Pumpkins Impossible’; ‘Preserving Today for Tomorrow’; ‘Wild Edibles’ and ‘Non-Dairy Cheese Making at Home’.
Lynda Turner a Scientist with Health Canada and also the owner/founder of Zengarry Vegetarian Cuisine of Alexandria will deliver a session ‘All About Greens’ and ‘Cooking with Kids’. They are all timely topics with families starting to think about ‘back to school’ and the challenge of incorporating healthy meals into hectic daily routines.
All in all it will be a great representation of all the region has to offer – right in our own backyard.
How does this fit with historic Upper Canada Village?
The Village with its wonderful gardens, heirloom varieties of vegetables, operating 19th century kitchens using authentic recipes and methods, cheesemaking and bakery really represents the original ‘100 Mile Diet’.
For the Food Lovers’ weekend Upper Canada Village will have special sampling with a 19th century flavor at three of the kitchens.
The Louck’s Farm kitchen represents a typical well-to-do pre-Confederation farm family and will serve up delectable samplings of chocolate delicacies. Chocolate caramel, Chocolate Sweet Meats, Spiced Chocolate (like hot chocolate) and Chocolate Comfits will be served to visitors looking to taste test the sweeter side of 19th century living.
At the Tenant Farm, or the ‘hired hands’ home, sample a selection of Village-made jams, jellies and preserves – all made using special 19th century recipes. You can sample Cucumber Preserves, Carrot Jam, Citron Preserve, and Apple or Rosehip Jelly served up on your choice of homemade crackers, bread or oat cakes. Visitors will be able to take a recipe home with them or ask the ladies for some preserving tips.
At Cook’s Tavern guests can taste authentic 19th century beverages. Lemon Syrup, Rhubarb Cordial, Rhubarb Shrub, Gingerbeer, Mead and Raspberry Shrub are a few of the drinks to be sampled at the tavern. Cordials and Shrubs used vinegar to put some zip in the drink resulting in a very refreshing summer beverage. Rather exotic sounding concoctions by today’s standards.
Expert Village staff will also provide garden tours led by head gardener Brian Henderson and offer samples of Upper Canada Village’s heirloom vegetables (over 50 varieties of tomatoes are grown onsite) and herbs straight from the garden. There will also be a special feature on horseradish – how to grow it and prepare this ‘root with roots’ which has been cultivated since antiquity.
Live 19th century music throughout the day will provide the perfect ambience for a food event in this historic setting.
“Developing this event has been a real eye-opener to the depth of talented and unique food producers we have in our region,” said Geoff Waycik, manager, Upper Canada Village. “The world truly is represented right in our backyard. As more and more people are becoming conscious about using the best quality and freshest ingredients to make healthy meal choices, the more relevant we found 19th century cuisine. We think it is a great way to promote local food and local food producers against the backdrop of Upper Canada Village. It is a perfect match.”
Visit www.UpperCanadaVillage.com for a complete list and description of all vendors participating. Food Lover’s Field Days is sponsored by Smart Serve, the Township of South Dundas, Foodland Ontario and Cornwall & the Counties Tourism.
Admission to Food Lover’s Field Days is Adult (13-64 yrs) $17, Seniors (65 + yrs) $14 and Youth (6-12 yrs) $12. Children 5 years and younger are free. The price of admission includes a reciprocal ticket for a return visit to Upper Canada Village or Fort Henry National Historic Site of Canada day program or to a Parks of the St. Lawrence beach / day-use area. For more information visit www.UpperCanadaVillage.com or call 800-437-2233 or locally 613-543-4328.