We have been attending this annual dinner with our family and neighbours ever since we moved to rural Saskatchewan in 2010. In the years when I felt cranky, I misheard it as “foul supper,” and in others, with yellow leaves filling my eaves and rain barrel, I heard “fall.” Regardless of pronunciation, fowl suppers are a Prairie harvest tradition, usually held under the auspices of churches and volunteer community groups, with women dishing up and washing up in the church kitchen the day of, and women cooking and baking in their home kitchens for days in advance.
Regardless of which small town you find yourself in, the fowl supper menu is changeless and most of it is homemade: turkey, stuffing, gravy, mash, rutabaga, carrots, salad, buns, and pie. Pie, glorious pie, in all manner of flavours, including — this lucky year — homemade butter tarts. As I picked up a plate of apple pie and added a tart to my plate, I observed many others doing the same thing, usually with a grinning glance around. The presence of Ontario-born butter tarts on a Prairie groaning board is a small indicator of our mobile population: I’ve eaten them in Newfoundland, too, as a partner to figgy duff following a traditional Jigg’s dinner.
Fowl supper tables are communal, so when we sat down, I was elbow to elbow with a stranger, who promptly introduced himself before tucking into his spuds and turkey. Several tables over, I saw some good friends, our nearby neighbours, but they were deep in conversation with their tablemates, so visiting waited until we’d all eaten our pie. As I munched, I recalled the bartering power commanded by butter tarts in the bidding wars that accompanied school lunchtime in my childhood. A butter tart could get you anything, but who’d want to trade it away? from Glacier Farm Media
Not withstanding the greater amount of shopping which is conducted at this period of the year, delivery restrictions remain in effect. it is pointed out by the regional office of the Wartime Prices and Trade Board, and no special concessions can or will be granted for their relaxation.
“This Christmas will not be like the old, peaceful holiday of pre-war days,” James Stewart, administrator of Services for the Board, remarked recently. “Labor, gasoline, rubber and vehicles are vitally needed by the armed services and war industries and must be conserved.”
Accordingly, Christmas shoppers are advised to carry as many of their parcels as they can since retailers are permitted to make only one delivery a day. This advice is given, together with a suggestion that the public shop early, to avoid an overtaxing of delivery facilities. “We have been assured,” Mr. Stewart adds, “that only those who leave their Christmas shopping to the last minute will suffer any inconvenience by reason of the delivery restrictions continuing in force.”
Fear having been expressed in some communities that farmers who have been in the habit of slaughtering livestock and selling meat to regular customers either on public markets from door to door will be prevented from doing so under the slaughtering order of the Wartime Foods Administration now points out that there is no intention whatever of interfering with this legitimate meat trade.
Banners who engage in it are of course, required to obtain permits before they carry out slaughtering of livestock for the sale of meat to others, but as long as this trade is conducted in accordance with the regulations of the Board and there is no attempt deliberately to evade those regulations or to violate the ceiling on meat prices, they need have no fear of interference with their accustomed practice.
Farmers who have always been in the habit of selling meat to their customers on markets or elsewhere will be permitted to continue that business. They will be granted permits to carry on this trade as soon as they make application, and these permits will be in effect until such time as officers of the Board have reviewed each case and decided it upon its merits, after which new permits for continued operations will be granted. No permits are, however, needed when the farmer slaughters livestock for consumption in his own household.
Linda Nilson-Rogers I worked there for Salim and Salha Houchaimi, in the mid 80’s. They held staff Christmas parties, and supported many local sports teams!
Mary Anne Harrison Margaret Mantil worked at that restaurant for many years. Probably through many of its reincarnations
Sharron Davis I had so many great meals there as a kid with mom and dad and we always had a good visit with Salim and Sally and Gail.
Mary Anne Harrison Bob and Marg McDonald owned the convenience store at the same location. After mom did the groceries at the IGA (where the heritage mall is now) my brother and I were always given a quarter and we stopped at McDonald’s on our way out of town. I always got a bag of S&V chips and a coke. The cokes were in a cooler that had cold water in it and you had to slide your drinks through it to get them out. Mom probably made that stop so that we would be quiet the rest of the trip home to Corkery.
Gwen OneillIt was also called mel’s at one time. Mel and Cecilia Lockhart built the place in the 50s then sold it to lamoureux in the 60s
Gwen OneillThat dinning room was actually a garage where George Villeneuve was the mechanic. He had a swing in there for my brother and i to swing on. I think my parents sold the store in 1959. I was young then so could be wrong.
Shirley FlaxmanScott Bolton We (Hutts) lived on St James St and visited that restaurant many, many times – great place. Early 60″s to late 60″s!!!
Christine Richards-BayleyMy family use to go almost every Friday .. sit in the dining rm & I always had to have a Shirley temple . Still love them
Allison VaughanChristine Richards-Bayley yep remember that! Also remember my mum and dad going there every Friday night and then going back up Saturdays to pay their bill lol !!! They had a great time there always!
Jean GossetWe live right beside all these incarnations of the same building, so we knew all the families that operated it over the years. They were all great neighbours, and complimented Irish town.
Jayne Munro-OuimetThe Eldali family who bought the restaurant from Bob and Marg, came from Madjel Balhis Lebanon. They came to Canada as a result of an unexpected evacuation when their village became a target war zone. The whole village was evacuated, the villagers left by plane to Canada and by boat to neighbouring country not affected by the war. They could not speak English, and a number of families in the Ramsay Almonte area helped them to learn. The youngest son Shaied went to Almonte High School for a few years.
Dawn JonesJayne Munro-Ouimet I think you mean the Eldali family. Said was a year older than i. Very nice family. I found out recently from one of the older brothers (who owns the pizza place in Lanark) that Said moved back to Lebanon is married with 6 kids and he is employed as an architect.
Dawn JonesJayne Munro-Ouimet : Salin Houchiami and his wife ran the Gourmet Restaurant in Carleton place for years. I’m sure his wife is one of those girls. Mike is now running the Gourmet. They also have a younger son Albert who is a heavy equipment mechanic.
Pansy MetcalfeI remember Mamma’s Place Restaurant and I knew the whole family! Helped them learn English and Their daughter Sabah was in my class and we became good friends!
Andy Williams-Mamma’s Place, was named after Rose Mantil who lived in Corkery. She was affectionately called “Mamma” by many, including her daughter Margaret who was a waitress at the restaurant for many years. Margaret was the one who suggested the name.
Cate JohnsonUsed to go there on Sundays way back when (liquor stores weren’t open then, and you could only drink if you ordered a meal) eat and drink our faces off! Lots of people did that and it always turned out to be a HUGE party every Sunday
Jean GossetI think before the Eldali family, the operator was Roy O’Connell, maybe my order is off a little, but he was there for a short time in the early 70’s. Of course Gail, and Margaret would be the best resources on this subject, rest their souls.
John CurrieWen’t There About 1954 To See The Hockey Games They Were About the Only Store In Almonte With A Black & White TV.
Donald ScottMan they had the ,best Pizza in the County back in the day 70’s n 80’s
Darlene MacDonaldDonna Manson worked here for many years and followed to work at the one in the mall
Donna Webb MunroGood memories. In the early 60’s- that is when my Almonte memories start- the farmers would take the milk in to the dairy and then congregate at Mommas for coffee and swap stories before heading home to work. IRA, the girls and I often ate there. Fond memories. IRA had many stories of Wayne Lockhart was a young lad – hitting the plastic ketchup bottle a certain way would put ketchup on the ceiling and also a certain young lad and would sneak downstairs after Dad had baked some pies. Never found out if he had a favourite kind.
Bobby GallantJayne Munro and Sylvia Ford took me there for one of my first legal drinks. They got me a Singapore Sling lol it was good
Brenda MunroI don’t think I missed a day of going over to Mel and Cecilia ‘s store.. The candy was great, and My Dad took me over every evening .right Gwen.
Cathy McRae SharbotBefore mum and dad moved here permanently we used to come up for the weekend and we would stop at Bob and Marg’s for mellow rolls on the way home
Jim HillUsed to eat there on occasion great food back then.
Did you know Mama’s Place opened in 1979? Who remembers when they were in a ‘house setting’ on Ottawa Street?
Linda MillsThey made a great filet mignon! Mr. Eldali and his sons
Peggy ByrneTotally different – they are a much smaller operation now than when they had the larger restaurant – they are now a small diner as opposed to a full restaurant that they were at the other larger location
Oh the memories!! I worked there as a teenager with the two Linda’s, Nilsson and Lee, Gail and of course many others as they employed many. Salim, Sally, their children and Eddie were lovely people to work for and with!! There were so many regulars, the bus drivers, truck drivers, you knew before they were in the door what their order was. It was a great meeting place for folks and a fabulous place for celebrations. I really enjoyed my time there!
The view shows the carding mill, planing mill and cheese factory.
BY JANICE KENNEDY– 2008– What did you do? I spent a perfectly languid summer day doing perfectly languid summertime things getting out of town, enjoying the scenery, strolling, nibbling and browsing. Could you be a little more specific? Sure. I went to Pakenham, part of greater “Mississippi Mills.” The little village on the Ottawa Valley version of the Mississippi River is barely more than a half-hour from downtown Ottawa, so it’s a drive-in-the-country destination that doesn’t impoverish you at the gas pump. Why Pakenham? There are lots of little villages around Ottawa, aren’t there? There are indeed, many of them certainly worth a daytrip. But what’s appealing about Pakenham, besides the proximity and prettiness of the place, is its ambience.
Some visitors might call it sleepy and it does seem to be the antithesis of bustling but I prefer to think of it as laid-back. A visit to Pakenham is an undeniably leisurely affair. Is that code for “leave the kids at home?” Maybe. What I like about Pakenham is the opposite of what appeals to my two young grandsons, whose tastes run more to water parks and go-kart tracks. If you don’t count the ice cream, Pakenham’s attractions tend to be more adult-oriented. Tell me about them. The village is both attractive and historic. At nearly 200 years old, it seems to have a settled sense of self.
Many of the houses some of them meticulously restored or maintained with their original character reflect the 19th-century love of Regency and Classic Revival architectural styles. In fact, if your interests run that way, you can take a detailed historical walking tour of Pakenham, guided by a helpful little pamphlet available free at most village businesses.
Dating back to the 1840s, Pakenham’s general store is thought to be the oldest continually operated general store on the continent. With everything from fresh baked goods to brass beds, it’s a great place to browse. What’s the highlight? Pakenham’s landmark is The Bridge. If you come by way of Kinburn Side Road, the exit you take from Highway 417, you enter the village by way of its famous stone bridge (“the only five-arch stone bridge in North -America,” tourist literature boasts). It’s an impressive structure, built in 1901 with locally cruarried stone cut in the squared look of the time, suggesting solidity and endurance. Small riverside parks by the bridge allow you to get a good look at the five sturdy spans and, on the north side, to listen to the rushing burble of the water over what is called Little Falls.
Pakenham’s century-old bridge is the only five-arch stone span bridge in North America. Then there is 5 Span Feed and Seed (“We feed your needs”). Besides agricultural and cottage supplies, 5 Span also sells outdoor clothing and local maple syrup appropriately, since Pakenham is in Lanark County, the heart of Ontario maple country. Which reminds me: A visit to Pakenham could happily accommodate a short jaunt to Fulton’s, the sugar bush just a few minutes outside town (directions at fultons.ca). Sounds wonderful, but aren’t you forgetting something?
Did you not mention Ice cream? I certainly did. Summertime’s easy livin’ , should always include at least one afternoon stroll by the river or in this case, relaxation on one of the park benches near the landmark bridge to contemplate the flow of the Mississippi a homemade waffle cone in hand filled with the smooth, cool glories of ice cream. In Pakenham, you can get your dose of frozen decadence at Scoop’s (111 Waba, just off the main street) or at the General Store. Either way, it’s a short walk to the river.
OK, I confess. Right next to the feed and seed suppliers, a small stand operated by local Cedar Hill Berry Farm was selling red, ripe and irresistible fresh strawberries. With visions of shortcake dancing in my head, I picked up a litre and doubled back to Watt’s Cooking? for a package of fresh tea biscuits (not quite shortcake, but close enough). That evening, in little more time than it takes to whip up a bowl of cream, we had our glorious old-fashioned summer dessert thanks to our Pakenham daytrip. I guess you could call that a sweet ending to a pretty sweet day? I guess you could, although it also made for a sweet beginning the next morning.
This was written inThe Ottawa Citizen==Ottawa, Ontario, Canada26 Jul 2008, Sat • Page 64
Do you ever watch a movie, set in a small town where people go into a restaurant or pass each other on the street and greet each other? You wish for instant that you lived in a town like that and Almonte is that with the Superior Restaurant and Pakenham is that sort of town with the Centennial. That is what these restaurants should be best known for. It is the place where families gather, where people go after church, where the guys gather before they go hunting. It’s where people greet one another when they walk in the door. For a moment you can feel like you belong and just take in the laid-back friendliness. Let’s keep these restaurants alive!!!!
The Citizen, Ottawa, Tuesday, September 6, 1977 An artistic salute to a good restaurant By Robert Smythe
The women at the Centennial Restaurant in , Pakenham, Chit., have been serving up good restaurant food and motherly advice for some time, and it is in recognition of their service to the community that the owners of Andrew Dickson’s craft ; store and gallery have put together a month long “Salute to the Ladies of the Centennial Restaurant”. Of course the show’s food theme affords the perfect opportunity to display predictable plates, goblets and place mats all of which abound at the Salute, in the earth tone chunkiness that you come to expect from local potters.
But those who have abandoned this homespun functionalism have done so with a good deal of humor. Their totally impractical tributes to the Centennial are the brightest of this group effort. Ice-cream is really the restaurant’s ace special, and so it is only natural that Paddy Mann’s vanilla cone banner should be hanging outside the old stone building. The image has also found its way onto colored T-shirts, screened by Jane Bonnell.
Gail Bent has made Gobelin tapestries of a stove and a Scottish frugal fridge (with only one carrot in it), but her funniest piece is Holstein By Any Other Name. It is a white wood udder, whose four generous teats are delivering a gushing stream of fibre milk down the wall into a waiting galvanized bucket. Across its side is emblazoned a silver MOO. Alice Paige’s jars of jam jelly look luscious sitting in the window with the sum streaming through them, especially when their deep clear color is echoed by a pair of ruby red satin lips hanging nearby.
Other clever and cute stuffed toys include some glossy eggplants, halved avocados, and a delicious chocolate wafer ice cream bar with a large bite taken out of it. Regular stuffed sandwiches come in several separate layers one for the lettuce, one for the meat, two for slices of bread. Inedible food was also heaped onto brooch pins. Of these, Neil Stewart’s jewelery work was exceptional. Using ivory, silver and brass he has assembled a miniature breakfast of bacon and eggs sunnyside-up, on a tiny round plate. Another piece features a slice of pie (a la mode?) and accompanying fork. At the other extreme of scale is Wayne Cardinelli’s oversized Blue Ribbon Pie in the Sky Award for the Centennial. The medal, which is at least one foot across, has been struck in clay for the occasion.
Sally TuffinI remember when it had red and white checkered tablecloths and shelving where local hand crafts were displayed for sale. Food was excellent.Then when I was a student at Pakenham Public we used to go out with friends to lunch at the Centennial.At the end of the schoolyear our bus drivers used to buy us all an ice cream at the ice cream counter. Worked there for a year when I was a teenager.
Heaps of ice cream in the biggest cone in the country (maybe in the whole world) goes for 50 cents at the Centennial Restaurant in Pakenham. Ont., on Highway 29 and it’s big. People come from all over the Ottawa Valley, and beyond, to try the cone they’ve heard about at the Centennial, as its name suggests, opened in 1967, and Elsa Stewart, its proprietor, explains: “We started serving the big cones around 1970. Some of the girls at the restaurant began scooping out larger cones and I encouraged them to continue.” She describes the cones, modestly, as “two, good-sized scoops.” Some of her customers liken them to softballs and its Sealtest and it’s good, but it’s the hefty scoops that really impress everybody. The restaurant keeps three freezers packed with tubs of ice cream and there’s good variety chocolate, vanilla, tutti frutti. strawberry, chocolate-walnut, maple, and heavenly hash a devastating mix of marshmallow-chocolate ice cream with chocolate chips and a few nuts. One of the nicest things you can do on a warm summer day is stop at the Centennial, pick up a cone and stroll two blocks to the lovely, old stone bridge that crosses the Mississippi River at Pakenham.
Bev Deugo I worked at Centennial Restaurant in Pakenham in the summer when Elsa Stewart owned it…scooped ice cream until my fingers froze ….Cones were huge, lineups were long, we scooped for hours on a hot summer day.
This arched landmark is one of only a few such bridges in North America. Built in 1903 across the Mississippi River, it is less than eight metres wide and was designed for horses and wagons. As the years went on, motor vehicle traffic put such stress on the bridge that it was threatened with demolition. Instead, after history lovers protested, the stones were taken down, catalogued and then replaced over a reinforced concrete structure in 1984.
Details: The bridge is near the intersection of Kinburn Side Road and County Road 29, just as you come into Pakenham.
While you’re in the area: The grey tower of St. Peter Celestine Roman Catholic Church dominates the village. The lovely stone building opened in 1893.
Who has been to the Centennial in Pakenham??? Carebridge Community Support1 min · So happy to work with community builder Omar of Pakenham’s Centennial Restaurant. Using donations from our MMTogether fund initiative we purchased gift certificates for tenants of 5 Arches Housing and members of the Pakenham SeniorsClub. The Centennial and Omar have been fixtures in downtown Pakenham for over 25 years!
Elsa Stewart former owner
Art and Elsa Stewart
Pakenham’s Stewart Community Centre was named for Art and Elsa Stewart who greatly contributed to the restoration and revitalization of Pakenham in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. It was opened in 1974, replacing the old Community Hall. Art and Elsa were awarded the Order of Canada in June of 1983. Operators of a model livestock-breeding farm, the Stewarts were active in many farm organizations and founded university entrance bursaries to the Ontario Agricultural College in Guelph for local students.
Here in Carleton Place can park their cars and eat great food, including breakfast, beside the Mississippi River. The building was constructed in 1861, although a tannery was first operated on the site in 1852.
Joe Scott took a poor calf skin to Brice McNeely who had a tannery on the banks of the Mississippi on Bell Street and asked what he was paying for hides. Brice told him 60 cents each with ten cents off for every hole in the hide.
“You’d better take it, Mr. McNeely, and I think I owe you something for it,” was the startled reply from J. Scott as Brice looked at the hide with more holes than Swiss Cheese.
Carleton Place Herald 1900
Farmers may have driven their animals to Carleton Place, where John Murdoch’s tannery at “Morphy’s Ford” turned hides into leather. It’s now The Gastro Pub, still with the beautiful patio.
Brice McNeely bought the business in 1860 and left the building to his son, who turned it into a summer home at the turn of the century. It first became a restaurant in 1981, and a dining lounge was built from a local log barn. The lounge is named “Henry’s” after a friendly ghost who’s rumoured to haunt the premises. Now it is called The Waterfront Gastro Pub
12 Bell Street (0.08 mi) Carleton Place, ON, Canada K7C 1V9-(613) 257-5755
Read more about the history of Brice McNeely here:
“This day twenty years ago I came to Carleton Place, near the close of the Civil War. At that time property was of little value. I took charge of the railway station as station master. The only industries in the place were the grist mill, run by Mr. Bolton, Allan McDonald’s carding mill, Brice McNeely’s tannery and the saw mill run by Robert Gray, with one circular saw. David Findlay’s foundry was just starting.
The lead mines were about closing down then. Twenty years ago it may be said there was no such thing as employment here for anyone and, strange as it seems, no one seemed to wish for work. Their wants were few, and those wants seemed to be soon supplied.–George Lowe, a seventy year old resident of Carleton Place: (July 1884)
Brice McNeely’s tannery is one of the oldest in this part of the country. The proprietor manufactures leather of various kinds and is one of our substantial steady and increasingly prosperous men, with considerable real estate. John F. Cram, whose large wool-pulling establishment is well known in this section, manipulates a vast amount of sheep pelts in a year, his premises being one of the most extensive in Eastern Ontario. He also manufactures russet leather.
Did you know the library used to be in the town hall and Brice McNeely Jr was not only the superintendent for the St James Sunday School but also the town librarian. He picked out the books for you to read and you had no choice in the matter and had to take what was given to you.
To help people stay healthy while rationing food, the government put together Canada’s Official Food Rules, that told people how much of each of the six food groups — milk, cereals and bread, meat, fruits and vegetables, fish and eggs — they should eat every day. You know it today as the Canada Food Guide.
These cards above permitted Mrs. McColl of Carleton Place to purchase rationed food from a local shop. Eleven million ration cards (lead image) were issued in Canada. Inside there were coupons issued for such things as sugar, butter and meat
People were willing to deal with it because we were very clearly attacked by another nation’s military and were presented and for Canadians, it was the ultimate exercise in sharing. Since Great Britain was virtually cut off, our food exports provided an essential lifeline to the mother country. By the end of the war Canadian exports accounted for 57 per cent of all wheat and flour, 39 percent of bacon, 24 percent of cheese, and 15 percent of eggs consumed in Britain.
I don’t think vegetables were rationed as they didn’t require much resources to cultivate them (no grain to feed them, etc), and they started the dig for victory project which increased the amount of ground growing food dramatically (basically anywhere that was a decent patch of soil was use for planting). People got inventive, things like carrot cake were popular (grow your own carrots).
Weekly ration for 1 adult (~1944)
Bacon & Ham
~ 1/2 lb minced beef
1 lb every 2 months
1 fresh egg per week
12 oz every 4 weeks
Here, the past, and its culinary turns, could be more instructive then we might think. Certainly puts things into perspective, doesn’t it?
Frugal Wartime Recipes to See You Through Challenging Times!
The more I think about it the more I think it’s a terrible, terrible thing. I think about war a lot and I think about how all over our world it has effected every day families regardless of colour or creed.
I made these WWII ‘Glory Buns’ today after I had observed the Remembrance Day silence and while I listened to the full Remembrance Day service from Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, on my local radio station, CKBW.
First of all I listened to Pierre Allaine
Pierre Allaine: Was a 14 year old when war broke out. He used to ferry people, lying flat on a barge during the night, across the river, by pushing the barge silently with a long pole to the free side of France. Pierre recited Flanders Field at the service in Bridgewater today.
Next I watched Frank Hammond who shared his thoughts… Quote: Conflicts today are not being resolved through power and the only real way is through negotiation…
And then Bert Eagle… Quote: Bert Eagle: There should NEVER be another war again, EVER, yet if I were a young man again and we went to war I would serve my country gladly…..
Above all I’ve been thinking of the BRAVE men and women who have taken part in a war and lived through it or given their lives and the BRAVE families at home battling to keep their children safe and fed and holding things together…
And the Glory Buns? It was such a glorious day that it needed to be celebrated with simple glorious food on my best glorious tray….. it reminded me just how lucky we really are.
Recipe for Glory Buns
12 oz of wholewheat flour (or white)
2 oz margarine
2 oz sultanas/currants/raisins (optional)
2 oz sugar
8 fl oz warm water
3 teaspoons of quick rise dried yeast
1 teaspoon dried cinnamon powder
3 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons sugar
Method Place all the dried ingredients in a bowl (apart from dried fruit) and stir Rub in the margarine Mix in the dried fruit Add in the warm water Knead well (use extra flour if mixture is too sticky) Divide dough into 12 balls Place on greased deep sided tray (I like to use the 8 x 8 inch foil trays and place 4 balls in each) Cover with plastic film or plastic bag Leave to rise somewhere warm for an hour or so When risen place in oven at 180 C for 15 minutes or so until golden brown When cooked remove from oven onto a wire rack to cool When cool prepare glaze by heating the water and sugar together until dissolved Using a pastry brush apply the glaze generously