Salut!: The Quebec Microbrewery Beer Cookbook
Véhicule Press, 2003 (2003)
Reviewed by Hilary Williamson
ournalist Raymond Beauchemin opens his yeasty cookbook with a discussion of St. Arnold, the patron saint of brewers, who spent his life exhorting peasants to avoid drinking water (wise advice in those times!) Tidbits of historical facts (included with the recipes) offer readers '
a continuing tale of people who have left us a tradition worth cherishing.
' The book's title is the traditional French-Canadian drinking toast. Beauchemin tells us why '
a recipe is like a story
', and explains the '
chemistry of cooking
'. He surveys beer styles in Quebec, and a handy substitution chart matches beers mentioned with N. American alternatives and popular imports. There are tips for beer-food pairings, and a brief menu planner.
n to the recipes!
open with several
recipes I'd love to try (
anyone?) except for an allergy. A cold
(fish marinated in a beery sauce) sounds delicious, and
Chinese Shrimp Rolls
, or a communal bowl of beery
are always popular. An
Illégal Black Bean Gazpacho
would hit the spot for a hot summer day - there's also a
, whose name comes from the Maudite beer incorporated.
Strawberry-Cherry Cream Soup
sounds refreshing. And strong ale enhances a
French Onion Soup
recipe for wintry weather. In
Salads and Sides
, I especially like the look of
Smoked Salmon Salad
include a variety of pasta sauces, like
Spaghetti Sauce with Eggplant and Cinnamon
, and plenty of chicken dishes, including
Apricot Chicken Pilaf with Almonds
. There's even a
for the traditional Christmas Eve
. Pork dishes include
Pork Roll with Apples
Paella de Matane
. Veal and steak choices follow, with several
options. Varied beers add flavor to salmon, tuna, scallops, trout and swordfish. Next come breads, pancakes, French toast, biscuits and pizza. Though I usually stick to the family recipe, I may even try the more sophisticated
with beer? I'll try anything once, starting with
Chocolate Stout Mousse
. Finish off with beer and cheese - general advice and pairing tips are included.
oncluding the cookbook: are a section on beer mixed drinks; a history of beer and breweries in North America but particularly in Quebec, from the Vikings to a 1990s microbrewery expansion; and a commentary on the evolution of the author's passion for beer in Massachusetts, Quebec, and around the world. If you enjoy beer and food in combination, sprinkled with historical tidbits, then don't miss this engaging cookbook. Mine will soon be dog-eared.
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