Gladee's favorite Nova Scotia Recipes
Gladee was so admired as a cook, that her recipes were given as gifts, and her restaurant was named one of Canada's best.
Nova Scotia is much more than fabulous beaches and historical richness. It's the friendly people and the fine work they do: artists, artisans, shipwrights, musicians .... and don't forget those wonderful souls who feed us in their dining rooms, restaurants and canteens. Whether we're locals or here on vacation, the efforts of our cooks and chefs can be the icing on the cake -- the topping to a perfect day.
The sisters, from left, Gladee and Flossie Hirtle.
. We'll start with none other than my Great Aunt Gladee. For 40 years, she developed a loyal following to her restaurant on Hirtle's Beach. She carried on a rich family tradition of cooking
- her mother too, was known for her expertise in the kitchen.
Gladee's first little canteen, the "Sea Breeze," was destroyed in a hurricane.
Way back in 1951, Gladee opened the Seabreeze Canteen. The small take-out was built by her brother, Paul. Two years later, he added a modest dining room. In 1961, the kitchen was expanded to properly feed the growing demand. The following year, Hurricane Daisy dealt the well-loved woman -- and her customers -- a nasty blow by washing everything out to sea. In 1963, Gladee's Canteen and Restaurant filled the void to over-flowing. Although it closed in 1991, it still has a fond hold on many of our hearts.
Several times, Gladee's restaurant was found in the prestigious " Where To Eat In Canada." One year, it was named among the 10 best buys across the nation. Every summer, a famous food critic made a pilgrimage to feast on her fabulous seafood chowder. Another of her chowder recipes, this time featuring the sugar-pea, landed in a respected cookbook. Gladee was known
far and wide for her pies -- coconut cream and banana cream were my favorites. Legend has it that the recipe for her coconut cream pie was given as a much-appreciated wedding gift.
Gladees Favorite Sugar Pea Soup Recipe
A favorite at the restaurant, it was made fresh from our own vegetable garden out back.
6 cups of water
2 cups of diced carrots
2 cups of diced potatoes
1 pound of sugar-peas
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp.of accent
2 tbsp. sugar
4 tbsp. of butter
1 can of evaporated milk
-Bring the water to a boil in a soup kettle or large sauce pan.
-Add the salt and carrots and return to boil.
-Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
-Add the potatoes and cook until just tender.
-Stir in the sugar-peas and sugar and simmer for 2 minutes,
until the peas are cooked, but slighty crunchy.
-Add the butter and milk.
-Heat until the butter melts -- take care -- do not boil
The family's long line of good cooks continues with my wife Suzanne and her brother, a successful chef. It's great to have Suzanne working with me on these pages. They'll be home to heaping helpings of InfoFun -- the best of the best recipes well-tested, and raved about, by the public, friends and family.
I worked at the restaurant, as well, my artwork was displayed, and sold, in the dining room. I designed placemats for Gladee which featured cartoon characters...they're pleased as punch to be back at work -- this time, on these pages.
Gladee used a wood-fired cookstove to bake her fabulous recipes such as barley bread, well-loved by her restaurant clientelle. Her kitty, Scooter, enjoyed basking in the stove's steady warmth.
Gladee was a very hard worker. Here she is making noodles for her soup. She rolls out the dough flat, cuts it into long strips and drys them on her line. Gladee had a great sense of humour, she was quick to tell a joke or play a joke. You didn't reallly think she used a clothesline to dry her noodles did you? We're trying our best to bring some smiles to all you fine folks that come our way.
Be sure to make this a regular stop -- we'll be updating with more sensational recipes. Add a dash of humor, photos of delicious dishes and a handful of cooking tips and you've got a full meal deal! In the meantime ... happy cooking!