22 December 2016

Tourtiere - French Canadian Meat Pie

Tourtiere - French Canadian Meat Pie / www.delightfulrepast.com

Tourtiere, or simply, Meat Pie, is a dish my husband, whose father was French Canadian, remembers from childhood. Mr Delightful hadn't had this dish since his Mémé died many years ago. I decided to make it for him this week in honor of his sister who recently died.

Living far apart, we vacationed together every year and had such good times. I loved her and her sense of humor. One day on my first stay in her home we had watermelon. I was fixing some for Mr Delightful when she asked me what I was doing. When I told her that her brother only liked it this way, she rolled her eyes and said to him, "Brother, Ma would be so happy to know you married a girl who takes the seeds out of your watermelon." 

I don't know whether my sister-in-law ever made any foods from her childhood, but if she did they would have been foods from the French Canadian side because she and Mr Delightful did not think too highly of their mother's general cooking! 

Some of my sister-in-law's specialties were the Middle Eastern dishes she learned from her husband's family (here's tabbouleh). Everyone loved her stuffed grape leaves, which she always made in huge quantities. Another Middle Eastern dish she made was simply called meat rice, made with ground meat (lamb, I think) and spices, including cinnamon.

So she wouldn't have hesitated to use cinnamon in her tourtiere as many people do; but I just couldn't bring myself to do it, though I did use the allspice, mace and cloves, albeit in smaller amounts than generally called for.

Anyway ...

Cooking foods connected with a loved one who has died is one of the things that comforts me ... so ... for Linda ...


Tourtiere - French Canadian Meat Pie / www.delightfulrepast.com


Tourtiere - French Canadian Meat Pie 


(Makes one 9-inch double-crust pie, 6 to 8 servings) 


The Meat Filling 

1 medium-large (12 ounces/340 grams) russet potato 
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
3/4 cup finely chopped onion (1 8-ounce onion)
1 pound (454 grams) organic pastured ground pork
3/4 pound (340 grams) organic grass-fed ground beef
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon mace or nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves 



The Pastry 

2 1/2 dip-and-sweep cups (12.5 ounces/354 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 sticks (8 ounces/227 grams) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and frozen for 15 minutes
2 tablespoons lemon juice or cider vinegar
Ice water to make 3/4 cup liquid


The Egg Wash 

1 large egg
1 tablespoon water 


Note: That makes waaaaay too much egg wash for one pie, so if you hate food waste like I do, plan to use it in something else the day you make this.


1 Peel potato, cut up, boil and mash (you should have 1 to 1 1/4 cup); set aside. 

2 In large skillet, heat oil and saute onion until soft, about 10 minutes. Add the ground pork and ground beef and cook over medium heat, stirring to break up the meat so that it won't cook into clumps. Add in the seasonings as the meat cooks until most of the liquid is gone, about 20 minutes, Stir in the mashed potato, mixing well. Taste and adjust seasoning. Cover and refrigerate until completely cooled, about 2 hours. 

3 With metal blade in place, add flour, salt and baking powder to work bowl of food processor. Turn on for three seconds to combine. Add half the frozen butter and pulse for six 1-second pulses or until the frozen butter is the size of large peas. Add remaining butter and pulse for three 1-second pulses.

4 In cup, combine lemon juice or cider vinegar and ice water. Pour 1/2 cup of liquid over all of flour mixture and pulse for three 1-second pulses. If needed, add a tablespoon at a time, over all of flour mixture, doing a 1-second pulse after each tablespoon, or just until dough forms large clumps; do not over-process. (The amount of water you will need depends on your climate and the moisture content of your flour.)

5 Turn dough out onto two pieces of plastic wrap, using a little more for the bottom crust, and flatten each slightly into a 4-inch round disk. Wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

6 Roll out the bottom crust (save the plastic wrap). It should be 13 inches in diameter and about 1/8 inch thick. Transfer dough to 9-inch pie plate, pressing it in place without stretching it; cover with reserved plastic wrap and refrigerate. Roll out top crust (again, save the plastic wrap) and place it on a rimless baking sheet; cover with reserved plastic wrap and refrigerate. 

7 Preheat oven to 425F/220C/Gas7. Spoon the meat filling into the pastry-lined pie plate, pressing it down lightly to compress it a bit. Brush the edge of the pastry with water and place the top crust, pressing the edges together to seal; trim and flute.

8 Beat the egg and water together and brush crust with the egg wash. Cut some steam vents or use a fork to make a pattern of small vent holes. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 375F/190C/Gas5 and continue baking for 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Note: After the first 15 minutes, I put a pie crust shield on it to protect the already browned crimped edge.

9 Some families have the tradition of serving tourtiere with mustard, some with ketchup; still others, gherkins or pickled beets.

48 comments:

Angie Schneider said...

That's a perfect meat pie! The crust looks particularly great.

Julie said...

Wow Jean will you look at that crust! This pie is the perfect comfort food and we would love it. Now I have to go check out those candied orange peels!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Angie, thank you! At first I thought it a problem that the egg wash seems to have made a cracked appearance, but then I got to liking it.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks so much, Julie! And look for my candied orange peel cookies in a couple weeks.

Thomas "Sully" Sullivan said...

Thanks for the insight. Have never thought about comfort foods as part of the grieving process. That said, there are foods that remind me of people and places…and times. This is particularly true in tracing back the odyssey of having lived in so many countries as a child (a dozen by the time I was six). Sometimes the only connection left is the nuance of a taste. So it was with Dulce de Leche. More often I’m left with a vague taste bud response with no further connection, like a finger pressed to mute lips in a dream…

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sully, interesting about vague taste memories from your well-traveled childhood. I think I was 23 before I left the country, but I was well-grounded in food from birth and feel very connected to it. Another thing that is comforting to me when someone dies is working on their genealogy.

Daniela said...

What a wonderful meat pie, it's so perfect that it's a pity to eat it, isn't it ?

May your Christmas sparkle with moments of love, laughter and goodwill,
and may the year ahead be full of contentment and joy.
Have a Merry Christmas, my dear, precious Jean

Xx Dany

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Dany, thank you. I've never been bothered by cutting into a pie or even a fancy decorated cake, I suppose because I'm more interested in eating them than looking at them! :D Peace and joy!

Swathi Iyer said...

Love this French Canadian meat pie, perfect for any party. Thanks for sharing with Hearth and soul blog ho, pinning and tweeting,

kitty@ Kitty's Kozy Kitchen said...

I'm so sorry for the loss of your sister in law, Jean. How sweet to honor her by cooking a favorite dish. Food always connects us to loved ones, I believe. The pie looks absolutely delicious and I would love to make one.
Merry Christmas blessings to you!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Swathi, thank you. I so appreciate your pins and tweets, too.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Kitty. Yes, I think it does, too. I'm often thinking of my dear departeds when in the kitchen. Joy and peace!

Pom Pom said...

Hi Jean! What a gorgeous pie! I had a Lebanese friend who made a similar lamb dish and I had forgotten about it. Thank you for the reminder!
Merry Christmas, sweet super chef!

Jeanie said...

This looks like something Rick would love. Me too, but especially him, with his love affair with Canada and now French Canada! Good winter food.

I especially love the memories you shared and wish you healing as you recall your husband's sister and your friend.

Christmas love to you.
jenaie

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Jean, I identify many of my loved ones with dishes they were famous for preparing. I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. The meat pie sounds quite good. ♥

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Karen, thank you! Wishing you and yours peace and joy.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Jeanie. It's very comforting, too, that her adult children and their mates all took such wonderful care of her and made her life so pleasant.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Martha Ellen. It's interesting how different people find different things comforting.

Cathy @ My 1929 Charmer said...

I've always found comfort food to be part of sadder and grieving times.. Its comforting and soothing. Wishing you and your family a happy and blessed Christmas

Romain Saha said...

I am sorry for your loss. That said, this looks to be a stellar tourtière recipe. I've had many - being half French Canadian myself - and this is the best looking tourtière I think I have ever seen. Brilliant!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Cathy. Wishing you and your family peace and joy.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Romain, thank you so much! Such a compliment, I was not expecting!

Marisa Franca @ Allourway said...

I've never had a meat pie! It looks delicious and your crust is beautiful. I will put your recipe on my to-do list for the coming year. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year!

Quinn said...

Thank you for this post which brought tears to my eyes (in a good way). I haven't had toutiere since my French Canadian father passed away in Dec 2012.
Best wishes to you and yours for a lovely holiday season.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Marisa, thanks. I hope you'll try it soon. And do let me know how it turns out for you. Peace and joy!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Oh, Quinn, and your comment brought tears to *my* eyes (in a good way). So sorry for the loss of your father, but glad to bring up a good memory. Wishing you a delightful December.

Unknown said...

Mr. Delightful is such a lucky man, indeed! A very sweet way to honor Eddie's sister. I'll have to try try this one....it sounds very tummy warming. Gary N.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, GN. I hope you try it soon. It *is* one of those things that really stokes the old furnace!

Cranberry Morning said...

The pie looks good, although the spices named are so very unfamiliar to me in a meat pie. LOL I would certainly eat a slice if you served it to me, though. xoxo I hadn't thought before of how food connects us to loved ones who've gone before us. That's so very true! Have a wonderful Christmas, Jean. BTW, our little Tommy seems to be developing a very 'Lionel-type' personality. :-)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, Judy. Of course, you can always make the pie in a non-French Canadian way with whatever herbs you like. That's good news on the kitten front -- I was hoping that very thing for our little Tommy! Have a wondrous (but short!) winter.

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Wow, Jean--this is the ultimate comfort food! Loved your tribute to your sister-in-law! Our relationships and memories are so wrapped up in our food. I am about to roll out my grandmother's sugar cookies that we made with my father after she died. My German grandmother would send a cardboard box with the cookies and soft candies each Christmas. My father would 'hide' the cookies at the top of his closet but we would sneak in to enjoy the cookies.

Your pie does look perfectly delicious. It made me wonder if we could cook together--me a perceiver 'dump and pour' cook who estimates and substitutes and outright makes it up--and you with your well-articulated beautifully finished Judger cooking style.

Thank you for all of your great ideas throughout the year! It has provided me much inspiration for cooking some great dishes. Mr Lightarted thanks you!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sue, thank you! And thank you for sharing your sweet food memory! Yes, we could cook together, a P and a J. I make it up as I go along, too; but I have to stop myself to measure and take notes for my readers' benefit. You'll enjoy my cookie post that's coming up soon, with my substitutions due to not wanting to go out to the store! :D

Cocoa and Lavender said...

This is so very similar to my Nana's tuortière, although her crust was made with lard and it was backed in a straight-sided pan. You have made me "homesick" for this pie and I think I will make one in the New Year! Also, this made me remember her Québécois sugar tart - so sweet but so satisfying. Jean, I love that you recreated this memory for Mr. Delightful - how lucky he is to have you help him through sad times of loss, and also pick out his watermelon seeds. Mary Christmas to you both.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

David, thank you so much for your kind words. I had no idea so many people have French Canadian roots! I have a friend who makes all her pie crusts with lard (and I made one years ago) and they are delicious, but I just can't bring myself to use it, though I'd rather eat it than shortening. Wishing you and yours peace and joy.

Miz Helen said...

Your Meat Pie looks beautiful and so comforting! Thanks so much for sharing your awesome recipe with us at Full Plate Thursday! Hope you are having a wonderful week and hope to see you soon!
Miz Helen

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks so much, Miz Helen! Always enjoy the Full Plate!

Annette, 3 Little Buttons said...

Ahhh that looks lovely. I am sure he was thrilled with your efforts. Thank you for sharing with the #DreamTeam and wishing you a Happy New Year. x

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thanks, Annette! Wishing you and yours a wonderful 2017.

Katie B. of Housewife How-Tos said...

Now this looks like something that might actually fill up my teenage boy (a/k/a the non-stop eating machine) for more than 5 minutes!

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

LOL Katie, I don't think there's a creature on the planet who can eat like a teenage boy! A hefty slab of this pie (about 1/4 of it) could probably hold him for an hour or two (well, for more than 5 minutes anyway)!

April J Harris said...

I'm sorry to hear about your husband's sister, Jean. I do agree, cooking foods connected to loved ones who have passed is very comforting. Your French Canadian Tourtiere looks wonderful - love the spices in this treasured family recipe. Happy New Year and thank you so much for being a part of Hearth and Soul.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you, April. I'll think of her every time I make it.

The Reader's Tales said...

Jean I truly adore your recipe. I have a meat pie recipe from the UK. My Sweetheart's favourite. But next time I will make this one. It looks perfect meat pie! The crust looks particularly great.
Happy Year 2017.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you so much, TRT. Probably most of the things I make, including various meat pies, are British foods, though this particular one is French Canadian. I think Rösti is my only Swiss dish!

Mrs. Sarah Coller said...

Thank you for sharing this! My father's side is French Canadian but I have no contact and, therefore, no traditions to carry on! I am always thrilled to see something French Canadian. I'll be adding this to my list of things to try.

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Sarah, thank you so much. And watch for another of my husband's family's French Canadian recipes coming soon!

The Reader's Tales said...

Hello Jean. I would like to tell you that I made your Canadian meat pie. And you know what?Sweetheart prefers your recipe (really). I must admit it was a pure treat and easy to do too. Thank you for this great recipe :)

Jean | DelightfulRepast.com said...

Thank you so much, TRT! You just made my day. I'm so glad you both like my recipe!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...