Tourtière: A French Canadian meat pie
Here’s another tradition in the Orne family, Tourtière: A French Canadian meat pie, also called touché pie by my grandmother Evelyn. The recipe is now is my own, but my Nana Orne gets all the credit.
When we were kids at my grandmother’s house she would make Tourtière pie with leftovers, pork scraps (with an occasional bone in the pie!), mashed potatoes and gravy.
I’ve been asked by several people for an ingredients list. It’s hard for me because I measure nothing, but I’m going to try: Two pie crusts, two cups of shredded pork, one cup or two cups of mashed potatoes (I use less but people use what you like more), one and a half cups of gravy. A pinch of all spices.
The grocery list: Pie crusts (yes, sometimes when life is crazy, I buy my crusts), pork loin (lean and a whole loin — Pinkham’s had them on sale last week), potatoes, spices (garlic, onion power, sage, salt, pepper, a dash of clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon), and chicken paste or chicken stock. Lots of people use ground pork and beef but I prefer a lean pork loin. I cut it in half, as seen in the pictures, cook on 325 degrees covered with tin foil, with some salt and pepper and all of the above dry ingredients. Cook on 325 for a least three hours so it just falls apart … I clean all fat off the roast.
While that’s cooking, peel some spuds and mash about six large russets depending on how many pies you want to make — I can get four pies out of a pork loin. Then, when the pork’s done and the potatoes are mashed, drain all of the good stuff from your pork into a sauce pan, add water, paste or stock, whatever you prefer. Bring to a boil and thicken with corn starch or flour.
Time to start building your pork pies!
First add your shredder pork to the crust, then add some of the thickened gravy, and top it off with your smashed potatoes and add a little more gravy, then put on the top crust. Make some marks with your fork so it can breathe and bake at 375 for about 40 minutes or until golden brown.
This has been a recipe that has been in my family for many generations, and it’s like a taste of Heaven. I don’t know who liked it more, my dad (aka Grampy Grump) or my daughter, Evie. She let me know that the one I made to take pictures for you all to see is the best one I’ve made. LOL!
Our family made this as our breakfast dish on Christmas morning many moons ago. When I make it now for my family, we eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner — it’s good anytime.
God bless, enjoy your family and friends, and have a very Merry Christmas.
Next week I’m writing about a very special recipe my Mom did … she was an amazing cook, mother and the hardest worker: Honoring Carol Orne.