Today I read an add in the paper from Normand’s – a respectable local restaurant – advertising: “Fine Regional Cuisine, Featuring Wild Regional Game: ELK, CARIBOU, and MUSKOX…”. Now for those of you who do not spend much time outdoors, you will not find, no matter how hard you search, a wild caribou or muscox within many, many, many hours of driving of here. Perhaps they mistakenly think they’re in the tundra. Sometimes seems like it in the winter. Perhaps they think their clientele are too stupid to know better? I’m really not sure what the real reason might be. But it did guide me in my search for what IS regional. If you drive the highways at all, you KNOW deer are everywhere here. So many that vehicles kill them regularly. [them and porcupines, but we’ll forget about that for the time being] So where’s the venison on every menu? You’d think that the meat in a Donair shop or in your burger would be venison – it’s local, it’s everywhere, and it can be procured cheaply [not referring to road kill, here]. It’s lean, it’s healthful, I don’t get it. Driving around, you’ll notice elk farms, bison farms, alpaca farms, lama farms, and loads of horses. But only a couple of those might ever make a fine restaurant menu. I’m guessing the vast majority of people have never considered eating any of them. Probably because McDonalds doesn’t sell them. Okay, that’s mean. Probably because the local super-grocer doesn’t sell them.
So I will continue my search for what is regional. Things I’ve got in the ‘are not’ column: rice, all tropical fruit, corn products, seafood, muscox, alligator, chilis, figs, and sugar cane.