A few years ago we took a trip to Quebec City for our 10th wedding anniversary. Unbeknownst to us, Quebec City was also celebrating it’s 400th anniversary.
Those French Canadians know how to celebrate.
Photo credit: Christiedigital.com
You should put Quebec on your bucket list if you haven’t been there. It’s a gorgeous city full of historic charm at every turn. If you do go there are some things you should know:
1. Menus are printed in French. Some have English translations but many do not. Bring a little French to English translation book if you don’t understand French.
2. “Je ne parle pas de français” means “I don’t speak French”. If you don’t speak French, you’ll use this a lot.
3. Pack warm clothes. We went in August so I only brought tank tops, shorts, dresses, and sandals. I ended up buying jeans and a wool sweater that I wore every day.
4. Pack stretchy pants. They serve poutine at every restaurant and, if you’re anything like me, you will simply have to try it at each one. (No two poutines are exactly alike!)
5. Don’t shy away from the sushi restaurants. It seems strange, but you will find some of the best sushi you’ve ever tried in Quebec.
6. The street performers are amazing so find a good seat and enjoy the show. If you’re lucky you may come across a bizarre travelling band wandering down the street:
We actually saw that band walking around Quebec City a few times during our stay, but my most memorable experience was the pie.
Quebec maple pie = Heaven in a pastry crust.
Real maple is my favorite flavor of any confection. Maple candy, maple cream, maple fudge, maple syrup, maple donuts… you name it. If it’s maple (real maple and not Aunt Jemima) I will be having it.
I tried maple syrup pie for the first time in Quebec and I almost cried. Seriously. The tears of joy welled up.
Maple pie is the kind of thing you have once a year. It is NOT LOW CARB. It’s not low fat either, by the way. It’s not low anything but it’s sooooo good.
Every year in April we attend a local maple farm during “Maple Week” which is a celebration of all things maple held across New York State. This year my husband grabbed a 32 ounce bottle of maple syrup and said “let’s get this!”. Really? What are we going to do with that much syrup? “You can make a Quebec maple pie”.
Yes. Yes I can.
I scoured the internet for the right recipe. It’s not exactly easy to find. Many of them called for sugar which I know is wrong. The sweetness needs to be 100% maple-derived. I thought about some recipes that called for evaporated milk instead of cream, but I really don’t think that’s right either. How can I taint pure maple syrup with milk from a can?
One recipe actually called for sweetened condensed milk which can’t be right. It just cannot be. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been known to drink sweetened condensed milk straight from the can. No, no, no. I’m sure I used a spoon. But even I wouldn’t mix it with maple syrup.
I finally found this recipe from Dinner with Julie which was EXACTLY what I was looking for. It came out perfect. Someone named Julie would never steer me wrong.
- 1 and ½ cups pure maple syrup
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- ¼ cup cold water
- 1 9” prebaked pie shell
- In a medium saucepan, whisk together the syrup and heavy cream.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water
- Heat the maple mixture over medium to medium-high heat while whisking in the cornstarch liquid.
- Bring this mixture to a boil and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Cook at a low boil being careful not to scorch the bottom. The mixture will thicken.
- Pour into the pie shell and refrigerate until set. Store pie refrigerated.