In Canada there is this thing called Squares.
It’s a dessert.
It’s very common.
It’s nothing I’d ever heard of before until I moved here. Don’t believe me? Look what happens if you google “squares:”
But look what happens if you confine your search for squares to Canada:
Now, the first time anyone ever asked me to bring Squares to a church function, I, like many of you, asked (what I thought was) the obvious question:
Squares of what?
What do you mean, Squares of what? Squares of Squares!
I didn’t understand: Yes, squares, but square-shaped what? Quilt blocks? Ice trays? Paper plates? Legos? What specifically would you like me to bring in the shape of a square?
When I finally understood that it was a dessert, I proceeded to ask the next (again seemingly) obvious question: What kind of Squares? As in, what recipe? Rice Krispie Squares? Brownie Squares? Those were really the only kind of square dessert I’d ever had before.
Any kind will do.
Apparently there is no one recipe for Squares. Every housewife has her own, either passed down for generations or made up or forged from her neighbor or torn out of a Canadian Living from years past.
CAN YOU IMAGINE ANYTHING MORE STRESSFUL THAN BEING ASSIGNED TO BRING A DESSERT TO A FUNERAL WITH NO OTHER SPECIFICATION THAN THAT IT BE SQUARE?
I worked myself into quite the domestic tizzy over that one.
Now, after living in Canada for over four years, I guess I’m a seasoned professional at Squares. Or something. At any rate, there’s been another death in my ward, and there’s a funeral on Saturday for which I have agreed to bring a plateful of Squares. So here’s your multicutural lesson for the day:
How to make Canadian Squares:
Make a pan of dessert. Any dessert will do. A 9 x 13″ pan is the standard expectation (don’t worry, I had to ask about that too).
Then slice the panful of said dessert into just-larger-than-bitesize (because exactly bitesize portions look stingy but much bigger is too awkward to arrange on a platter, plus they’re usually rich enough that 1.5 bites is plenty) square sections. Or rectangles. Really any shape is fine. They’re all called Squares.
Place the any-shaped dessert portions onto a serving tray or plate and deliver to whatever party, wedding, funeral, or random neighbor you’ve been assigned/coerced/inspired to Square.
I’ll try to remember to let you know how mine turn out.