Before the gargantuan Cabane PDC by Montréal chef Martin Picard, there was Anne Fortin’s Cooking with Québec maple syrup. A friend of mine, Anne is the grande dame of Jean-Talon Market where she owns the food bookstore Librairie gourmande, AKA Montreal chef-and-foodie central.
While I have every intention of cooking from the Pied de cochon sugar shack book (things like Breakfast PDC, veal curry and chicken with gnocchi come to mind), let’s face it, for a busy mom, these are time-intensive recipes. And with two picky eaters at home, I’m always a little scared to spend 24 hours in the kitchen only to be greeted at the dinner table by dubious looks, if not all-out dramatic groans.
You’re looking to indulge your sweet tooth this spring? You’re going to Paris and want to bring a typically Québecois gift? You’re invited for Easter and are scrambling for hostess gift ideas? Here’s a small, simple cookbook that only wants you to discover the joy of cooking with maple syrup. (BTW, it won a prize at the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards as the best single subject French cookbook for Canada, so this is no lightweight.)
You will find a traditional section with sugar shack specialties of course. But the real added value here are the modern recipes, many provided by Québec’s leading toques from Jérôme Ferrer to Marie-Fleur Saint-Pierre, and Patrice Demers to Michelle Marek.
Vive la différence? The book has its own, brand-new WordPress page (!) where you can also order a gift assortment including 3 samples of maple syrup and sugar. Isn’t that sweet.