Don your apron: Library collecting Nova Scotian recipes

The Halifax Public Libraries is looking to share Nova Scotians' love of food with the world by putting recipes online that include ingredients from the province.

Recipes must include a local ingredient and aren't just limited to traditional Maritime dishes

Karen Dahl, program development manager for Halifax Public Libraries, says food is something that resonates across all cultures. (Richard Woodbury/CBC)

The Halifax Public Libraries is looking to share Nova Scotians' love of food with the world by putting recipes online that include ingredients from the province.

So far, about 125 recipes have been posted to allrecipes.com through the project.

"What's really neat in saying what tastes like home to you is we're not narrowing it down specifically to what you would think of as traditional Nova Scotia recipes," said Leah Pohlman, the adult services librarian at the Keshen Goodman Public Library in Clayton Park.

Traditional Nova Scotia dishes would be things such as rappie pie, hodge podge and seafood chowder, and even the donair  — though no one has submitted a recipe for it yet.

Rather, the focus is on the ingredients.

Traditional Nova Scotian ingredients

"There's the things you often think of, like apples, blueberries and lamb, but then there's things that are maybe a little more out there like lavender and dulse," said Pohlman.

Other Nova Scotian ingredients include strawberries, haskap berries, maple syrup, fiddleheads, pork, chicken, lobster and eel.

If the ingredient is fished, farmed, foraged or hunted in Nova Scotia, it's considered local.

The recipe project is part of a broader initiative Halifax Public Libraries is working on called Tastes Like Home, which celebrates food culture in Nova Scotia through things such as cooking and gardening workshops, and lectures.

Leah Pohlman, adult services librarian for the Keshen Goodman Public Library, says the recipes should simply include an ingredient from Nova Scotia. (Richard Woodbury/CBC)

"The whole idea of food is universal. It's something that speaks to everyone of all ages and all cultures. It has a lot of stories and memories and flavours attached to it. It resonates beautifully," said Karen Dahl, the program development manager for Halifax Public Libraries.

As part of Tastes Like Home, an event called FreshFEST was held at the Halifax Central Library on Sunday afternoon. It included cooking demonstrations and displays of old and new technologies, such as traditional apple cider presses and cabbage shredders, as well as a 3D printer being used to make cookie cutters and a Lego bot used to ice cookies.

How to submit recipes

People can submit recipes online or write them out by hand on forms found at each Halifax Public Libraries location. Submissions will be accepted until Dec. 31.

Pohlman said the initiative is a perfect fit for Halifax Public Libraries.

"The library is really about community and building community and this is a great way to do that. We're sharing something that all of us have in common," she said.

"We've got that love of tradition and love of food and this is the way for us to come together and do that."

These cookies were made with the use of an L-shaped mould that came from a 3D printer. (Richard Woodbury/CBC)