From the Kitchen: Tourtière! (Meat Pie)

Tourtiere II

Last year, in a fit of homesickness, I decided it was about time we have a Christmas meal that was more French Canadian. My eldest children are Québecoises, after all, and hadn’t enjoyed a Québec style Christmas in ten years. So I looked up recipes for things like Tourtière and creton (something similar to the southern “Scrapple“). This recipe was perfect: it tasted exactly the way it should. ((I found a really fascinating exposé about the “traditional” tourtière on The World Wide Gourmet that will offer variations, depending on what you feel like doing.))

Tourtière is served any time one feels like putting in the rather minimal effort, though it is customary to find them around the holidays. The filling can be made of almost any meat, really, but pork and potatoes being cheap, it’s probably the most common choice.

1 1/2 pounds ground pork
1 large baking potato
1 large onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 dash ground allspice
1/2 cup water
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust deep dish pie
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Bake the potato until done, 30 – 45 minutes in a preheated 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) oven. Peel and mash the potato.
Place the potato, ground pork, onion, spices and water in a large frying pan and simmer until very thick, for about one hour.
Meanwhile, prepare your pastry.
Line a deep-dish pie plate with pastry. Spoon in filling, spreading evenly. Cover with top crust.
Brush with beaten egg and sprinkle with paprika, if desired. Cut steam vent. Bake for 50 minutes at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). If edges brown too fast, cover with a strip of foil. Serve warm with ketchup or with a sweet and sour relish/chutney (I’ll link it as soon as I can find a good one).
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