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Food Comics: French Meat Pie

Tom O.
Posted by Tom O. on Nov 1, 2016
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We are pleased to introduce Food Comics from The Chopping Block where our resident Cartoonist Tom O'Brien illustrates his cooking adventures. Here, he shows us how to make one of his family's favorite pies: Tourtiere or French Meat Pie. 

Welcome back, Food Fans! It's getting to be that time of year when everyone wants a pie, still fresh from the oven.  I love a good pie.  Apple , Pumpkin, Pecan, they're all great.  But, why not add some savory to the mix!  Here's an old favorite in my family: Tourtière (French Meat Pie) This dish makes an appearance at every thanksgiving and christmas in my family, and it doesn't last long!  The recipe is direct from my great grandmother, and probably older then that.  Normally I make a recipe a few times, and tweak it as I go, but this is one I'd never change.   Here's what you'll need: 3 medium potatoes 2 tablespoons butter Splash of milk 1 ½  lbs lean ground pork 1 ½ lb lean ground chuck 2 large onions chopped 1 clove garlic, finely chopped 2 1/2 teaspoons poultry seasoning 2 teaspoons salt 1 teaspoon celery salt 1/2 teaspoon sage 1 1/2 teaspoon pepper 4 pie crusts The thing to note about this recipe, is that it makes enough filling for two pies.  I've tried halving the recipe, but it never seems to come out quite right.  It's also practically the same amount of effort to make two, go through two of these so fast that it's always worth it. Peal the potatoes, and chop into a medium dice.  Add them to a large pot of boiling water, and cook for 20 minutes.  Drain the potatoes and mash, adding a splash of milk and two table spoons of melted butter.

While the water heats and the potatoes boil, heat a large pan to medium high heat. I use my 12” cast iron skillet, and that is barely enough room, so when I say large pan, I mean large pan.  You might even want to consider using a soup pot instead of a pan.  Combine pork, chuck, and onions ; cook stirring often.  Cook until the meat has browned and the onions are soft. Drain off grease, there's gong to be a lot of it.  Add the garlic, letting it cook for only 30 seconds to a minute.   Next, stir in the poultry seasoning, salt, celery salt, sage, pepper and 1 cup of water.  Bring this to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover.  My cast iron doesn't have a lid large enough, so I use a pizza pan. Simmer for 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in mashed potatoes.  When it comes to the crust for my meat pies, I usually turn to a boxed crust.  It's quick and easy.  If you'd like to make a crust from scratch however, I recommend The Chopping Blocks pie crust.  You can find a recipe and instructional video on their Youtube page. Once you have your pie crusts all set, place crusts into the bottom of two 9 or 10 inch pie pans.  I recommend earthenware, which gives a nice browned bottom to the crust.  A 9” or 10.25” cart iron skillet also makes a great pie pan.  Spoon mixture into two pie shells.  Fold edges over meat mixture, then place top crust over mixture.  Flute edges with a fork and trim excess. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then turn oven down to 350 and cook additional 25 minutes.  If edges of crust begin to brown too quickly, cover them with tin foil before turning the oven to 350, while the pie continues to cook. Serve with brown gravy, or dijon mustard.  Tourtière is great as a side dish or the main course.  Although it reheats in the microwave well, I'll even have it cold for breakfast or lunch.  Try adding this delicious savory pie to you rotation.  You wont be disappointed!Want to learn more pie-making techniques? Don't miss our upcoming Holiday Pies and Tarts hands-on cooking class on Monday, November 21 at the Merchandise Mart. You'll learn how to make the perfect pie dough I mentioned above and put it to use in Chocolate Meringue Tart, Apple Cranberry Crostata and Mini Sweet Potao Pies with Praline. 

We'll also show you how to make our famous Apple Pie during this Thursday's Customer Appreciation Day at the Mart as well as our most popular Thanksgiving class: Thanksgiving Crash Course and new this year: Taste of Thanksgiving.

If you don't have time to make your own pies for the holiday, let our chefs handle dessert. We have Apple and Pumpkin Pies available for pick up at both of our locations during the week of Thanksgiving. Place your order today!

Holiday Pies

 

 

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Topics: meat, pie, Recipes, food comics

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