Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Eating up the Hill: Turkey lunch with the trimmings

I generally have turkey once a year: at Christmas. Which is just about the right amount for me, actually. Especially given that between different dinners and assorted leftovers, I usually have about a year's worth of turkey over the holiday period.

My first turkey of the 2016/17 holiday season came last week for lunch, when the Parliamentary cafeterias served their annual holiday lunch across the precinct. Being a patriotic Canadian, I gathered up some compatriots and we headed upstairs for a traditional Christmas lunch.

After starting with some perfectly adequate mushroom soup (sold separately), I dug into the lunch. And I have to say, for a cafeteria lunch I was pleasantly surprised. But let me start first with the disappointments. The carrots were under-cooked. It can be hard to get carrots right in a cafeteria setting, which may be why so many resort to the frozen bags of peas and carrots. I do appreciate the effort with the real carrots, though. Also, the mashed potatoes were fine I guess, but I don't really like mashed potatoes. Just don't get the point. Maybe that makes me a bad half-Irishman, but there you go.

Let's move on though, as I really did enjoy this lunch. The white meat turkey was as moist as you're going to do in this setting. I'm not used to stuffing in loaf format, but it was tasty. The gravy was hot and flavourful and provided generously. But the surprise highlight was the mini-tourtiere. Beef, I believe it was. Not a part of my traditional Christmas meal, but rich in flavour and truly delicious.

All in all, a hearty and satisfying Christmas lunch. I give it 4.5 out of 5.

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