The Huron-Wendat Nation in Wendake, Ouebec, is used to maximizing their natural surrounding in their cooking. Hunting and foraging for indigenous ingredients is a part of their culture, something they’ve been doing for a long time. Whether it’s tracking caribou, sourcing local herbs, or making bannock, the Huron-Wendat nation have been doing what chefs have only relatively recently made a staple of their food production—local farm-to-table, or in this case, forest-to-table.
The Globe and Mail reports that the Huron-Wendat’s traditions of ‘cooking with the bounty of the Earth’ has become a part of the overall experience at the new Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations, a beautiful boutique hotel just 15 minutes from Quebec City. This new four-star establishment celebrates the Nation’s culture, from the excellent food on the plates to the aesthetics of the building itself.
Rooms at the Hôtel-Musée are decorated with fox and beaver pelts. The hotel itself is built as an incredible longhouse and museum complex, with the Nation’s history displayed permanently in these gorgeous spaces. Not content to have guests simply look upon their culture, the Huron-Wendat Nation offers visotors a chance to join them in the daily Labrado tea ceremony in the hotel’s lobby or, for the adventurous, put on a pair of snowshoes and track a caribou.
The Globe and Mail’s writer, Cinda Chavich, visited the hotel and wrote about getting a “full Huron cultural immersion,” with Diane Andicha (Moon) Picard, who was “resplendent in her white buckskin dress,” while she explained the finer points of making bannock.
“We gather around a smoky campfire on the hotel terrace, listening to the rushing Akiawenrahk (Saint-Charles) River and admiring the silvery birches silhouetted against the dark sky as she kneads a batch of dough,” Chavich writes, “the Wendat traditional bread was made with corn flour and water, she says, then “placed in Mother Earth” to rest and rise before being formed into a thick round for cooking on a hot stone in the firepit.”
We suggest you read the piece for yourself here, and if live in or around Quebec City, or are planning a trip there, that you seek out the Wendake Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations hotel.
For more information on the hotel, visit their site here, or call 1-866-551-9222.