Updated June 2019
You’ve heard of poutine... but what about poutine râpée? New Brunswick’s Acadian community has a culture and cuisine all its own and there are some traditional dishes that every visitor should try. Acadian food is part of Canada’s French heritage, and it’s got a distinct history and flavours which are intertwined with neighbouring Québec. Centered around farmland staples like potatoes and stewed meats plus plenty of seafood, it’s hearty, homey, and delicious.
You’ll find Acadian food served in restaurants, food shacks, grocery stores, and - of course - Acadian kitchens around the province. Here are 9 delicious ways to get a taste of Acadie.
1. Poutine râpée
This traditional Acadian dish isn’t the fries-and-gravy poutine you might know. Instead, poutine râpée is a boiled dumpling made from both grated and mashed potato with a tasty centre of seasoned pork. The preparation requires a lot of patience, but it’s worth the work. Going step by step is the key to success!
2. Chicken Fricot
Chicken, potatoes, celery, and carrots come together in this Acadian stew that isn’t just hearty – it’s simply the ultimate comfort food. Add pâtes (a.k.a. dumplings) for a little extra yum factor.
3. Crêpes râpées
You may not think “pancake” when you hear “potato” but this savoury dish will change that. Grated potatoes are combined with onion, flour, egg, salt, and pepper before being cooked into a golden, crispy treat.
4. Coques frites
You’ll be happy as a clam when you try this dish! With New Brunswick’s abundance of fresh seafood, there’s no better place to dig in to some battered fried clams while on a road trip along the coast.
5. Coquille Saint-Jacques
Scallops get the royal treatment in this recipe where they’re poached in a creamy wine sauce before being crowned with breadcrumbs, cheese and then browned under a broiler.
6. Poutine à trou
This delectable dessert bakes apples, raisins, and cranberries into a ball of pastry that gets topped with a brown sugar syrup. It’s sure to make you go mmm.
7. Pets de sœur
These pastries, which are cousins to the cinnamon roll, have been enjoyed by Acadians for generations. Fun fact about these delicious treats: their colourful French name literally translates into ‘nuns’ farts’.
A meat lover’s dream, this dish found in Madawaska, Campbellton and along the Appalachian route of New Brunswick spreads layers of venison or other meats, cube potatoes, and onions between six layers of dough. The dish is then slowly baked to bring out all the flavours.
A Brayonne favourite from the northwestern corner of the province, ployes are a hearty buckwheat pancake you’ll want to butter then cover in maple syrup, brown sugar, or molasses before folding it up to eat.
Check out Food Network stars Chuck Hughes and Danny Smiles digging into an Acadian Feast from the East on Chuck & Danny’s Road Trip.
Try a recipe or two of your own or head out and get at taste of Acadie here:
- Menu Acadien, Shediac
- Chez Léo Restaurant, Shediac
- Chez Camille, Cap-Pelé
- Bel-Air Take-Out, Cap-Pelé
- Chez Mémére Poutine & Râpé, Moncton
- Saint-Antoine Poutine Râpée, Saint-Antoine
- Restaurant la Sagouine, Bouctouche
- Lafiouk Restaurant, Kouchibouguac
If you’re looking for a drink to go with those Acadian dishes, find some tasty craft beverages from creative microbrewers on the Northern New Brunswick Beer Trail.
Want a side of cultural immersion with your meals? Head to Pays de la Sagouine to see food being prepared in Mathilda’s Kitchen, enjoy a bowl of fricot at the canteen, have a drink at The Bootlegger’s or savour a Sunday brunch Acadian-style at the restaurant. At Village Historique Acadien, get a glimpse into how food was traditionally made in the village houses, take a cooking workshop, or try traditional Acadian fare at their restaurant, La Table des Ancêtres. In Memramcook, get a taste of the past at the Wood Chef Bakery: Boulangerie Pain du Collège with wood-fired breads still prepared according to a hundred-year-old recipe used at the old Collège Saint-Joseph.
And if you’re in the Madawaska area, check out Acadie Gourmet for places to try local dishes.
🍴 Bon appétit! 🍴