Tomorrow I go over to my mother’s house to cook a Thanksgiving Dinner. Our traditional thanksgiving menu includes the following: turkey, with dressing (stuffing), mashed potatoes with giblet gravy, often sweet potatoes (yams), Brussels sprouts, and Creamed peas. For dessert pumpkin pie is a must. We also often have Lemon Meringue and/or apple pie. Yes, it is a huge feast. I end up giving thanks that I don’t eat like that every day.
In Canada Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday in October and is the celebration for a successful harvest.
The history of Thanksgiving in Canada goes back to an English explorer, Martin Frobisher, who had been trying to find a northern passage to the Orient. He did not succeed but he did establish a settlement in Northern America. In the year 1578, he held a formal ceremony, in what is now called Newfoundland, to give thanks for surviving the long journey. This is considered the first Canadian thanksgiving. Other settlers arrived and continued these ceremonies. He was later knighted and had an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean in northern Canada named after him – Frobisher Bay.
It took many years for Canada to designate an official day for giving thanks but finally on January 31st, 1957, Parliament proclaimed. . .
“A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed . . .to be observed on the 2nd Monday in October.
If you have not heard of Creamed Peas here is the recipe:
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoon flour
- 1 cup ? and 1/2 cream
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Good Dash pepper
- 2 cups frozen peas (use a 10 oz box, or measure 2-cups from a bag of loose frozen peas)
1. Cook the peas in salt water.
2. While peas are cooking mix the flour, cream and sugar in a jar with a lid and shake until smooth.
3. When peas done pour off most of the water then add butter.
4. Add cream mixture to peas stirring all the while. Stir and cook until sauce thickens.
Thank you for the comments about my last article. Unfortunately, they are in Russian which I cannot read. You are probably thinking that I need to get a Russian dictionary and learn how to read Russian. Not a bad idea. Maybe I will make it my New Years Resolution.
Sheila, thank you for your recipe! 🙂
I`m also heard about Thanksgiving Day from my friend from Vancouver, but he don`t celebrate it.
It’s very pleasant that Canadian attractive woman spends her time to explain us what a Thanksgiving Day in Canada and how Canadians celebrate it.Thank you for your attention and recipe which I’ll try certainly.I think every country has its own Thanksgiving day,even if it calls differently,celebrates in another day.
Have a nice Thanksgiving Day!
Hi Sheila. A very interesting post! I was just wondering if there is an historic explanation for why pumpkins are depicted as a necessary ingredient for the Thanksgiving’s celebration in Canada? Is it somehow related to the story of settlement by Mr. Martin Frobisher?
Very interesting, I mean the history behind the celebration, different from American:-) : however the menu for Canadian thanksgiving is almost the same as in US. Coming to Herkunft’s post, I guess pumpkin has more seasonable reason than historical 🙂
To explain the pumpkin tradition I need to give you a bit of Canadian and USA history. At one time the 2 countries were engaged in a Revolutionary war. At the end of the war a group loyal to Britain, called the United Empire Loyalists, left the USA and immigrated to Canada. They brought their own traditions with them — such as pumpkin pie and cornucopias. So Thanksgiving in Canada is a mixture of the USA and the Western Europe tradition of giving thanks for a bountiful harvest.
Is it strictly family holiday or there are also some street celebrations? Do new immigrants adopt this tradition?
Hi, Sheila! 🙂
Thanks a lot for the ‘real Canadian’ recipe. I would also like to ask you about the turkey preparation (cooking?) — is it used any special recipe? We tried to cook it oneday, but it was reeeeally tough. Vita told us the turkey they eat are usually very tasty and soft. I look at these huge carcasses and cannon imagin how you cook them. In Russia, we used to eat chicken but not the turkey, so we don’t know the peculiarities. Thanks! 🙂
‘giblet’ — unfortunately, I have not found this word in my dictionary. What does it mean?
‘I end up giving thanks that I don’t eat like that every day.’ :)))) Oh, you know you right look at my mind!
Thanksgiving is generally a family holiday. There isn’t a parade or anything like that. I would imagine that some New Canadians might be interested in adopting the tradition. They may choose to serve a dinner more traditionally their own but would welcome the opportunity for family to come together to celebrate and enjoy each other’s company.
Here is the dictionary definition of giblets: the edible viscera of a fowl. (viscera, the organs). Most people do refer to a recipe when cooking a turkey as most only do it once or twice a year. You have to know for certain the weight of the bird as that indicates how long it has to cook. It also takes longer to cook if the turkey is stuffed with a dressing. You cook it slowly in a 350 C oven, covered with aluminium foil. You baste it every half hour or so for tenderness and a nice golden color.
Sheila, thanks a lot!
It’s a lunch time now… 🙂 and I’m so hungry after the description.
Do you know how to make pumpkin soup? I ate at the restaurant and it was very tasty. 🙂
Here it is:
50 ml butter
1 large onion chopped
2 leeks (white part only), chopped
1 large potato, peeled and diced
750 ml diced raw pumpkin OR 250 ml cooked or canned pumpkin puree
750 ml chicken stock
375 ml (approx.) light cream
pinch nutmeg and cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper
In large heavy pot, melt butter and cook onion and leeks until softened, but not browned. Stir in potato and raw pumpkin; cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in stock, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Puree in food processor or blender until very smooth. Return to saucepan. Stir in cream to desired consistency, heat until hot but DO NOT BOIL. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with a sprinkle of chives or green onion. Makes about 6 servings.
Thanks Steila! Pumpkin should be special for soup or normal that now sell for Halloween? 🙂
I’ve just cooked the Pumpkin Soup! 🙂 Yeah, it’s delisious. I’ll put some photos (cooking process) to my livejournal some later…
Sheila, thank you for your recipes. I am going to cook Pumpkin Soup next week. Could you give us some more traditional canadian recipes?
Here is a recipe to enjoy over the cold winter months.
Savoury Beef Stew
Cut into 1″ pieces
1 pound stewing beef
1/4 cup flour
Heat in large pot.
3 T shrotening or cooking oil
Add floured meat pieces and brown well.
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 cup tomato soup
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp monosodium glutamate (optional)
1/4 tsp garlic powder
Stir to blen evenly. Cover pan and simmer very slowly for 2 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally and adding water if necessary.
1 cup diced potatoes
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup cliced celery
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
1 cup water (more or less as necessary)
Continue simmering, covered, for 30 minutes.
Thicken gravy with flour and water mixture.
If desired serve with dumplings.
Yield: 6 servings.
Уведомление: Thanksgiving Day - Вики-трэвел (Блог об иммиграции, путешествиях и жизни в Канаде)