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Jan 26, 2010 07:54 AM

Olympics theme dinner!

For the opening ceremonies of the Olympics, I like to have a theme dinner, with food and drink that is native to the host city/country. That said, I'm not too scrupulous about the authenticity of the food -- it's more about an excuse to make something a little different than the quotidian meals, and of course eating and drinking delicious treats while watching the spectacle.

I'm a little stymied about what to serve for Vancouver. Any suggestions for delicious Canadian dishes? Thanks!

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  1. Poutine if you can find cheese curds.
    How about fondue? Cheese and chocolate. I don't think it's Canadian, but it's a nice winter treat.

    1 Reply
    1. re: monavano

      Fondue would be fun! We traditionally do cheese fondue on Christmas Even, but I was disappointed with this year's recipe, so it'd be nice to try again.

      I had thought about Poutine (first Canadian food that came to mind) -- it's one of my faves, and I can get great local cheese curds. Plus it would go well with beer. Eh? ;)

      Thanks for the response!

    2. Vancouver is described by many as being the melting pot of Canada. Folks might be amazed to know how many Chinese people occupy that city. You'll find a significant East Indian influence there, as well as African and other cultural influences. That's what, IMO, makes Vancouver such a perfect location for the Olympics. So for an Olympic theme dinner, I'd suggest an assortment of dishes representing some of the nations competing (how about foods from those smaller countries that are often under represented in the media) as a tribute to their involvement? Maybe a different menu for each day of the games.

      4 Replies
      1. re: todao

        I don't have it in me to do menus for each day of the games...if only I was childless and single with disposable income enough to do so! But I do love the idea of making a variety of dishes. Definitely Chinese. Thanks!

        and PS the Naniamo bars look scrumptious!

        1. re: todao

          This is a great idea and much easier than trying to come up with dishes that are authentically Canadian. I'd shoot for dishes from the following countries: Paraguay, St. Vincent, Latvia, Bulgaria, Mozambique, Oman and Mongolia.

          1. re: Perilagu Khan

            That is a nice suggestion about having dishes from more overlooked countries, but I'd be stymied with trying to come up with anything from the Countries listed above.

            1. re: yesidid

              In all fairness, I was being just a bit facetious. ;)

        2. Sounds like fun. Here are a few traditional thoughts:
          Bloody Caesar's for cocktail, if you can find clamato juice. How about salmon, maybe cedar-planked? Or crab cakes. Or a smoked salmon pizza. Hopefully you can get BC wine? A strange one: I had never had so much Caesar salad til I moved to Vancouver, so if not typically Canadian, it is pretty ubiquitous (you can top it with lots of seafood if you want). And of course Naniamo bars for dessert.

          However, you could also take an Asian-inspired route or riff on the hundred Mile diet which originated here or look-up Westcoast cuisine for some ideas.

          Here in Vancouver the talk around the table at a recent dinner party was what Greek foods to cook for the Olympics : )

          1 Reply
          1. re: waver

            Salmon or crab (or both!) = brilliant. Dunno why I didn't think of that. I'm thinking some kind of smoked salmon appetizer, or crab dip. Mmmm. Thank you!!!

          2. Alder smoked salmon would be a must! Pacific seafood would be good like octopus (calamari rings), oysters, and clam or crab dip. Try serving beer bread, eh, with a nice grainy mustard. Canada produces the vast majority of the world's mustard seed. Canada grows a lot of cranberries which you could serve as a chutney on baked brie, dried cranberries in biscuits, cranberry jelly with cream cheese on crackers, or in a drink. Cranberry juice and Canadian vodka go well together with a squeeze of lime. We're going to make a version of the Quebec specialty, poutine (fries topped with cheese curds and gravy). Ours are going to be Bobsled Poutine Potato Skins topped with curds, bacon, and gravy. Back bacon (aka Canadian bacon) is good on grilled sandwiches with maple glazed caramelized onions, Canadian cheddar, and sauteed apples.

            1. We are also doing an 'opening night' ceremony dinner and for dessert, I am going to make an easy chocolate cake (or molten cake) in the shape of a hockey puck and then lay it on a plate that has been 'decorated' with the Olympic rings (I will likely use ganache and then pipe it on in each colour in advance). I got a bunch of 'swizzle stick' size hockey sticks from a dollar store to complete the look (or you could make cookies in that shape to add the final touch)