IHME list shares memories from Quebec and Japan


  • Komugi Ando. Photo: Veikko Somerpuro

  • Martin-Éric Racine and Tuisku Torkkeli. Photo: Veikko Somerpuro

The participants of Yael Bartana’s IHME Project prepared meals that reminded them of home at the IHME house. On the last IHME list of March we recommend the recipes by Martin-Éric Racine and Komugi Ando, who recall the winter in Quebec and dinners with family and friends in Japan.

Preparing the meals and eating together united the inhabitants of the house. It was often the best moment of the day. All meals included some familiar elements to me and I did not find them odd. I liked every food dish. Komugi’s food was super with the Japanese ingredients and its preparation, in which everyone took part. – Anna Miettinen


1. Martin-Éric Racine: Pâte chinois

“Pâte chinois (known also as “Chinese pie”) is a traditional Quebecois winter food dish. The story has it that during the construction of the Pacific Railroad Chinese migrant workers made it under instruction from their British foremen. The Brits wanted them to cook a dish resembling shepherd’s pie but made with local ingredients. The Brits and the Chinese went back home, but the recipe was there to stay and was soon adopted by the people living in Quebec. This recipe of my own invention is a mix of the traditional dish and an Irish version of it I had at Hell Hunt restaurant in Tallinn.” 

1 litre potatoes, peeled and quartered (approx. 4 potatoes)
3 tablespoons butter
1 ¼ decilitre
2 tablespoons parsley, minced
herb seasoning salt (to taste)
1 onion, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 package (200 g) cottage cheese
1 can crushed tomatoes with chilli
1 can creamed corn
½ teaspoon paprika powder
salt and pepper (to taste)
150 g Emmental cheese, grated
tomato ketchup or Dijon mustard

Boil the potatoes in salt water until they are soft. Pour the water from the kettle. Mash the potatoes roughly with butter. Add the milk and use a mixer the make a mash thinner. Then add the parsley, herb salt and black pepper. Put aside. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees. Fry the meat and onion in a frying pan. Add the chili flavored chopped tomatoes, salt and pepper. Place the meat on a baking pan (size 33×23 cm). Sprinkle a layer of cottage cheese. Add the corn puree and then a layer of mashed potatoes. Sprinkle paprika powder and bake in the oven for about 40 min. Add the cheese on top. The pate chinois is ready when the surface is grilled.

2. Komugi Ando: ” Nabe ” for 4 people

” Nabe is a food that is fun to do whenever the family or friends are gathered together. It doesn’t need anything special but it’s a laborious dish. I suppose you can add anything you want in the soup. When I was in high school and lived in a residential school dormitory, we often made this Nabe (but all the ingredients were boiled in water and eaten with sauce. We did not have any salmon heads). At the IHME house it was not possible to share the enjoyment of sitting by a camp cooker. But the food tasted nice and the rice and salad that I decided prepare in panic to accompany the dish were a success”

100g salmon (the salmon head)
50g Asari, Venerupis philippinarum
3 carrots
¼  of one radish
1  packet of mushrooms
1 packet of shiitake mushrooms
200g chinese cabbage
4cm of ginger
5 tbsp of sake
1 tbsp of soy sauce
1 tsp of mirin
1 tbsp miso paste
200ml of sauce made of Konbu alga, mushrooms and fish

If you find mussels, then cook them in sake until the mussels open up. Sprinkle salt and the grated ginger on top of salmon. Toast in the oven until they are crispy. Add the mussel broth pan to the pan and the roasted salmon, soy sauce, mirin and miso paste. Taste and add salt and sugar. Put all the vegetables, mushrooms and the fish into a large clay pot beautifully. Pour in the cooked broth and all the other stuff and cook on top of a  camp cooker placed on the middle of the table. All family members must be there staring, waiting and chatting together while Nabe is boiling in the pot.