Whiskey Jac

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Tourtière! November 29, 2010

Filed under: NOMS,NOT MARTHA — whiskeyjac @ 5:45 pm

My grandmother used to make this for Christmas – it’s supposed to be a meal you have after midnight mass, for Reveillon. I don’t think I ever went to midnight mass, we weren’t hardcore Catholic like that. Maybe Cat or Meo did, once or twice in my life time – but I can’t remember and so obviously it was never hugely important to us.
MEAT PIE however, IS. My grandmother used pork, beef, and venison, and oh man. OH MAN. Venison. After trying this and a few other versions since then, I think that the deer must make a big difference and I’d love to try some. In my opinion the sausage pork I used was too chewy and I would use regular ground package pork next time to avoid that (sausages are just… ugh. love hate. what IS that chewy texture? it’s awful) and I think that the venison, with so little fat would really balance the richness of the two other meats and that it’s gamey wild taste would work so well with the spices. This is why my father needs to move here? So he can teach me to HUNT. I miss deer and moose meat. And um. And him. Ahem.

OK TIME FOR PIE.

I took pictures because I am a fancy, Fancy cook.

You need

1 medium potato (cubed, boiled, mashed)
1 medium apple, diced
1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork
1/2 an onion, diced
1/4 cup water
1/2 t mustard powder
1/2 t oregano and basil (so, to taste)
1/2 t nutmeg
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t allspice
1/4 t black pepper
1/4 t salt (or more, depending on your taste. I’d rather not over salt this)

You can add whatever spices you like, cloves, thyme, sage, cayenne whatever you like, really. I think that the important ones are the nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice.

Cook the meats with the onion and water – I don’t think you NEED the water but I like it coz you can drain the fat a bit easier – you don’t want a dry meat pie coz that’s just sad but I don’t like greasy meat pie either. Half way through the cooking time add the spices, cook until evenly browned. Drain the mix into a bowl, scoop a bit of the meat into it, and give it to the skinny dog who refuses to come inside even though it’s fucking 0 degrees outside. Mix in the mashed potato and apple (which keeps everything nice and moist don’t leave these out! Especially the apples.).

Let it cool a bit, then put it all together in your bottom pie crust and tamp it down so it’s nice and compact.

I love this pie crust, look at the lovely flecks of yolk – mmmm. It’s from the Pioneer Woman Cooks – Sylvia’s Perfect Pie Crust. I add about a T of xtra lard to make it nice and moist, but that might have something to do with how dry it is here?

In the middle of putting the pie together stop to kiss your 2 year old crazy haired daughter who has brought you a cheese bun as a love offering.

I brushed the crust with milk before cooking, and I didn’t have to cover any of it with foil. Egg yolk is nice too but It sorta felt like overkill to me. Coz yes, one egg brushed on a pie made almost entirely of meat and lard would just be the straw that breaks my back.

Cook in a 425 degree oven for 20-30 mins, until the crust looks good.

We eat this with ketchup – it’d be better w home-made stuff but Heinz tomato smoothie is good too. Some people use a beef gravy but that’s just weird to me. KETCHUP. Mmm.

I have to go take the kid to playgroup now! Hope this is readable and do-able. I’m not a food blogger or anything! Just sharing 🙂

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7 Responses to “Tourtière!”

  1. Kirsten Says:

    You did a great job. It sounds delicious. I like the addition of the apple in there. I wonder about making it with leftover meat. I usually have leftover pulled pork or beef, and now turkey in the freezer. Is it like a thick stew inside after it cooks?

    • whiskeyjac Says:

      no it isn’t like stew – it’s dense, compact, sort of like… like a looser version of meat loaf? it’s moist – or at least a good one is, i’ve had dry ones and eugh – but not soupy or filled with gravy, like.

    • whiskeyjac Says:

      but i mean, stew like meat pies sound awesome too – i should make one sometime. I’ve done the chicken stew like ones, but not beef. oh man. with red wine and carrots and peas and mushrooms. mmm.

  2. Kirsten Says:

    I’ve made pot pies before. There has to be a balance, not too soupy. I’m thinking something between pot pie and your tourtiere would be perfect.

    • whiskeyjac Says:

      Kirsten you are making want to do a pot pie now. But for reals, this is like the 3rd time? in a week and a half that we’ve had pie crust. I made apple pie on thursday, quiche on saturday, and now this. and i still have another crust to use up – do you think i could sub it for a recipe for lemon squares that wants a shortbread crust? why not? i should try it.
      you should try this traditional pie some time though, it will make you speak french. bad french. gutter french. the best kind of french.

  3. Gwen Styles Says:

    This is very similar to my Mémère’s recipe, with the exception of the apple, which I’ll be trying this year for sure!

    I’ve done the same pork experimentation as you – I don’t really like he porc sausage meat, and ground porc is not quite right either. I found the tourtiere I made by mixing ground beef and ground TURKEY together to be close to the beef-venison version, if you can believe it. Maybe because the turkey’s so lean. Dunno. It was rad though!

    • whiskeyjac Says:

      gwen what spices do you use? do you agree that it’s the nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice stuff that really makes this pie? i do. i like them strong in it.
      did you ever make that tvp pie? how did that turn out?
      and yes try the apple! my grandmother and mother use green apples, peel them, i think, and cook them a bit with the mix. i didn’t peel, used spartan apples, and didn’t cook them at all before putting them into the pie and cooking the whole thing. they were crunchy and very apple-y, and i liked that, though i could see a preference for the softer mushier version for sure, that would be good.
      i would try the turkey thing but there is rarely gr turkey in our store here! like, i’ve been here over a year and seen it twice? and it’s tres cher trops cher. i think just reg. ground pork would do well, but oh i miss venison!
      i’m curious about your recipe!


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