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nakji

Tourtiere

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I have gotten myself into the Christmas spirit by re-reading Maggiethecat's excellent ruminationon that Quebecois Christmas specialty, the tourtiere. This ground pork pie is just the answer to my Christmas dilemma - I'm having a large crowd over, and want something meaty to serve - there aren't a lot of turkeys or roasts of beef to be had, but ground pork is but a street market away. But since I have all sorts of other interesting meats to hand as well - roast rabbits and duck come to mind immediately - I was wondering if anyone had any variations they'd like to share? And what about doing mini tourtieres - too much work?

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DH, Ed, is French-Canadian and Oddawa by birth on his Mother's side and here is his version of the tourtiere. Two made each Christmas: one for the Christmas Eve party we regularly attend and one for us. His family call him 'Eddie-Paul', but I can't do the accent in typing. :wub:

(Copied straight from a messy, stained old recipe card)

Fry and mix together 1/2 lb ground beef and 1/2 lb ground pork. Boil, mash & add 1 medium potato. Chop/dice, fry & add 1 medium onion. Add salt, pepper, allspice to taste.

Mix all & place in pie shell (lard & 7-Up). cover with pastry & bake in oven 450 degrees for 10 minutes & 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Serve with ketchup. Lots of ketchup.


Edited by Darienne (log)

Darienne

learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

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My mom's recipe is pretty much exactly the same as Darienne's husband's - the only exception is that my Mom uses's onion powder instead of onions because as little kids we wouldn't eat the onions. And it is certainly a winter / holiday staple in my family - Mom usually makes one Christmas eve for dinner, and Memere always pulls them out for late afternoon meals on Christmas and Thanksgiving (we eat at noon).

I think using game such as venison would be a very typical substitution that a lot of Quebecois would make; not sure about duck and rabbit - but why not? It might be nice to have a traditional one and then a "contemporary twist" on one.

Also delicious - Patridge pot pie instead of the more traditional turkey or chicken!

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Thanks for noting Maggie's wonderful article! Though no one in my family is French-Canadian, we often have tourtiere for Christmas dinner or supper. Ketchup is very important. One of the in-laws has found a great recipe for a fruit ketchup that includes apples and I think raisins - heavenly!


"Life itself is the proper binge" Julia Child

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One of the in-laws has found a great recipe for a fruit ketchup that includes apples and I think raisins - heavenly!

Sacre bleu. I think not. Give me Heinz or give me nothing at all! :raz:


Darienne

learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

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My wives version is similar to the one above as well...it is a mix of her mothers and my mothers recipes. She does brush the crust with a little dijon for flavour, and has made a plum chutney that really hits the spot with the tourtiere. We have ours on Christmas morning while opening presents.

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Years ago Saveur Mag printed a recipe for "French-Canadian Ketchup" (issue no. 47), that it called the traditional condiment to tourtiere. While I haven't cooked this ketchup myself, I was intrigued enough to clip the recipe. So the ketchup can't be all that bad.

My adapted recipe for the ketchup:

6 red or green tomatoes, peeled, cored and chopped

2 large white onions, chopped

4 ribs celery, chopped

2 peaches, peeled, pitted, and chopped

2 pears, peeled, cored, and chopped

2 apples, peeled, cored, and chopped

1 1/2 cups white vinegar

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

2 bay leaves

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Combine all ingredients in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Cook over med-low heat until ketchup is thick (like chutney), about 2 1/2 to 3 hrs. Store in the fridge (the mag says it's good for 6 months), or pack and seal in sterilized jars.

Don't ask me where people are supposed to find peaches in December. Maybe that's the place to substitute some raisins.

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Years ago Saveur Mag printed a recipe for "French-Canadian Ketchup"... (the mag says it's good for 6 months)...

Don't ask me where people are supposed to find peaches in December. Maybe that's the place to substitute some raisins.

Maybe that's why it has to last six months? :wink:

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Tourtiere Quebecoise sort of launched my culinary explorations. Way back when, my would-be future wife had a copy of James Villas' Town & Country Cookbook and one day I decided to do this recipe because of it's similarity to the pastys of northern Michigan which my family has a long connection with. My would-be wife was skeptical as it involved making a pie dough from scratch, but I shrugged it off (probably naively). "Aww, you just have to follow the directions..." But it worked great and was a feather in my cap.

I just looked up the recipe and it doesn't deviate significantly from the recipes posted here. It does add cornstarch, which will just help the slices to hold together. Oh, and some bacon is added (never a bad thing). The pastry is not spiced though. Just a basic pate brisee.

From the pasty world could come turnips and/or carrots.

Ketchup and pastys is a very controversial subject in my family. I'm not even going to go there.

But Mini Tourtieres with puff pastry done in mini muffin tins might well be worth a try.


Edited by IndyRob (log)

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Ketchup on meat pie is a perfect combination. I don't have any ketchup for my tourtiere, but I did find some fruit chutney at Marks and Spencer which will have to do. My main problem now is that I can't find any allspice. Would cloves do instead?

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I was about to say...this is a pasty.

and those are eaten only with beans and HP sauce.

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Ok, you all killed me. I just got back from the grocery with the supplies for a tortiere/pasty/bridie dinner.

Oops, forgot HP sauce. Back out.

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I have gotten myself into the Christmas spirit by re-reading Maggiethecat's excellent ruminationon that Quebecois Christmas specialty, the tourtiere. This ground pork pie is just the answer to my Christmas dilemma - I'm having a large crowd over, and want something meaty to serve - there aren't a lot of turkeys or roasts of beef to be had, but ground pork is but a street market away. But since I have all sorts of other interesting meats to hand as well - roast rabbits and duck come to mind immediately - I was wondering if anyone had any variations they'd like to share? And what about doing mini tourtieres - too much work?

I do mini tourtieres at Christmas/New Year's Eve all the time. I have used toast cups in the past, but recently have started doing them in Wonton cups instead.


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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My main problem now is that I can't find any allspice. Would cloves do instead?

Allspice is supposed to taste like a combo of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Pinches of any or all of those 3 spices shd make a good substitute.

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Great! I have cinnamon and nutmeg on hand, and I should probably be able to find some cloves somewhere. Hopefully.

A couple more questions: Does this pie get better with age? Or should it be made fresh for consumption right away?

And - anyone have any foolproof pastry recipes that don't call for a food processor and crisco? I have butter and butter. Actually, I could probably render my own lard, but that might be taking it a bit too far before Christmas. I have cookies to make too.

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I think the filling would keep, but because it's a pastry crust I'd try to serve it right away. Unless you chilled the filling and the dough and assembled it and kept it chilled until baking time. But if I were to do that, I'd want to do a trial run first.

My Town & Country recipe has mostly butter, but some shortening as well.

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The filling certainly keeps for a couple of days. I generally make the filling a day or two in advance and the crust if it's a whole pie, the day of. the toast cups and wonton cups can be made several days before and kept in an airtight container. when ready to serve, fill and heat for 10 minutes or so.


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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Ok, rabbit is out. Pork only, with potatoes and some all-spice. Basic pastry, I think. I'm going to assemble it unbaked, then freeze, for baking Christmas Eve. Question: does it need to be thawed before baking, or can it be baked from frozen?

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I'm no expert, but that is not the way I use to see tourtière made in my familly (I'm a french Canadian from Quebec)

In my memory, meat, onion and stock was mix together then let site in fridge overnight. Then dough was put in a large bowl, potatoes is add to meat mixture with some spice (I would have to ask around for exact spice) and cover with an other dough. Cook slowly in oven for 5-6 hours, last 45 minutes uncover. Thats the way I remember it was made. Fast cooking in pan and quick baking in oven look more like a meat pie, not a tourtière. But there is a lot of debate on what is the exacte real receipt of tourtière in Quebec.

Happy cooking everyone

Chris


Edited by wawa (log)

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