Quebec, is known in the culinary world for two main reasons: maple syrup and poutine. Quebec traditional cuisine, however, has much more to offer. Discover the traditional cuisine of the beautiful province that is Quebec, Canada.
Translated literally, this means “Chinese casserole.” In reality, there is nothing Chinese about the dish; rather, it is a Quebec version of shepherd’s pie. It consists of three layers: ground beef on the bottom, creamy corn in the middle and mashed potatoes on the top. The origins of pâté chinois are still unknown. According to the most common version, pâté chinois was served to the Chinese workers building Canadian railroads in the 19th century. Even if pâté chinois remains a family meal, some restaurants include in their menu its elevated version using slowly cooked lamb or duck instead of ground beef. Some home cooks also play with the ingredients by using sweet potatoes or cubes of beef. There are also vegetarian versions where lentils replace ground beef. Pâté chinois is a favorite weekly treat for kids.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
This classic Quebec dessert will become your new sweet addiction. It is perfect in its simplicity, no complicated ingredients (basic cake dough), but the secret lies in soaking the dough in sugar syrup before baking. Chômeur means unemployed in French and it refers to the low-cost ingredients used to make the dessert. Today many substitute sugar with the maple syrup to add complexity and flavors. Pouding chômeur is a comfort food for family dinners rather than big celebrations. It is perfect for feeding a big hungry crowd of kids and teenagers.
Tourtière du Lac-Saint-Jean
Tourtière is a meat pie very common everywhere in the province of Quebec. Depending on the region, veal, beef and/or pork can be used, well diced or ground. This is more of a festive dish, often served during Christmas or other holidays. The most famous tourtière comes from the region Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean. To distinguish from other tourtière the meat is cut in cubes and often wild meat is added. Tourtière du Lac-Saint-Jean is also much bigger in size. It is labor-intensive and time-consuming to make. Even though you can find it in many places, the best one is made by someone who comes from the region.
Another Quebec dish for carnivores, cretons is simply a pork spread. It is often prepared for breakfast. One common way to serve it is on a hot toast with yellow mustard and Kraft cheese. The heat of the toast will melt both cretons and cheese, making a nice texture and mixing all the flavors together. While not fancy it is still very much present in the Quebec culture. Many restaurants will add it as a side to your morning eggs instead of or together with ham or sausages depending on your preference. Cretons can also be purchased prepared in grocery stores.
The most known Quebec culinary invention has now a million variations and is copied widely outside the province. Unlike other dishes, it is not to be made at home. The authentic version is simple: fries, cheese curds and gravy, everything else is a nice addition. Today you can try poutine with chorizo or bacon, beans or guacamole. Venues across the province compete in making the most creative and unusual versions. Some chefs from high-end establishments experiment by adding foie gras and other sophisticated ingredients. There is also a trend to create fusions with poutine by, for example, adding it to a burger. The origins of poutine remain an unsolved mystery and are subject to discussions. One thing is certain, poutine is the most common fast food in Quebec.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.