Saturday, August 30, 2014

bonus features: hans in the kitchen

This post offers supplementary material for an article I wrote for Torontoist, which you should read before diving into this piece.

If your appetite has been whetted, here are a pair of Hans Fread recipes I encountered during my research. First up, his take on chicken liver pate.

Source: Globe and Mail, November 16, 1957. Note steer behind Hans's head.

Second, from Fread's George Brown College course on "Cooking for the Budget Minded," a recipe printed in the September 12, 1969 edition of the Toronto Star.

Budget braised beef

1 piece beef fat, size of small potato
4-5 pounds beef, crossribs, or bottom round
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 garlic clove, minced
3/4 tsp celery salt
1 tbsp crystallized ginger, diced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 unpeeled lemon, thinly sliced
8 small potatoes, peeled
4-5 carrots, quartered
8 medium onions

Dice and melt the fat in a dutch over or pot. Brown the meat slowly on all sides, until it has a good-looking brown colour.

When meat is browned, pour the lemon juice on top, then the garlic, celery salt, diced ginger, salt, pepper, and slices of unpeeled lemon. Cover and simmer over low heat for 2-3 hours, or until meat is tender.

After 1-1/2 hours of cooking, place the potatoes, carrots and onions around the roast. Cover and continue to simmer until everything is tender.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

bonus features: allan lamport

This post offers supplementary material for an article I wrote for Torontoist, which you should read before diving into this piece.



If only more mayors kept scrapbooks as extensively as Allan Lamport did. To say the dozens of brittle, flaking volumes sitting in the City of Toronto Archives were a valuable resource in preparing this profile is an understatement. Throughout his political career, Lamport clipped every article mentioning his name and pasted them into the type of scrapbook you can easily pick up at Staples or Wal-Mart. During his mayoralty, volumes are organized by newspaper, which is especially helpful in the case of the yet-to-be-digitized Telegram.

Warning: due to the condition of the scrapbooks, you’ll need to brush the flakes off yourself after viewing them.

Monday, August 04, 2014

john the hugger and other scenes from toronto police court, 1909


As Toronto's police magistrate between 1877 and 1921, George Taylor Denison III passed judgement on thousands of people in his court. The press dutifully covered the proceedings daily, leaving historians with a record alternatively amusing, enraging, and heartbreaking.

Over the years, I've saved several police court reports, usually topped with a catchy headline like this one. Who doesn't want to know the sordid details surrounding "John the Hugger" that caused him to be hauled in front of Denison?

Let's dive into the details of John, the Stone family, the "saucy mendicant,"  and the other cases included in the News's court roundup on November 22, 1909...

Saturday, August 02, 2014

hippie gets rub in tub

Source: Toronto Star, September 29, 1967.
While this story is presented in a charming manner, complete with victim who apparently shook off being grabbed and dunked in a tub of water, it's hard to deny that the hippie-washers were out to commit acts meriting assault charges if attempted now. This wasn't an "attempt to do something constructive," this was a bunch of yahoos looking to stir shit up.

Note the look on the victim's face. His expression screams "Seriously? Are you kidding me? Riiight..."

Not everyone at U of T felt the same way about cleaning up Yorkville. A story in the Globe and Mail the following day noted that in a 78-56 vote, the Graduate Students Union endorsed financial aid for draft dodgers and for people arrested at a Yorkville sit-in the previous month.