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Saturday, February 9, 2013

Mom Miranda’s Tourtiere (Quebec Meat Pie)

Last night I had dinner with my family and was reminded of a fantastic meal that I had only a couple of months ago. 

We had all just arrived home for the holidays a few days before Christmas. Upon entering my parents' house, we were greeted with the smell of my mom's cooking--- just in time for lunch!

My mom had prepared a meat pie. Her version of the Quebecois Tourtiere. She had actually prepared three of them... two for lunch and one, wrapped and ready for the freezer to enjoy on another day.

Lunch was amazing. The pie's crust was flaky and the meat filling was delicious. My mom served the meat pie with green beans simply sauteed with garlic.

So, how was I reminded of this fantastic lunch last night? Because that third meat pie made an appearance! Thawed and baked to perfection, it tasted exactly like the lunch we had a couple of months ago. 

Mom Miranda’s Tourtiere
For 1 pie

1 lb of Lean Ground Pork
1 tsp Cornstarch
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 Onion, finely chopped
1 clove Garlic, minced
3/4 cup Chicken Stock or Water
1 stalk Celery, finely chopped
1 Large Carrot, finely chopped
1 Large Baking Potato, peeled and diced
1/4 tsp Ground Pepper
1 Bay Leaf
1/2 tsp Dried Savory
1/4 tsp Dried Rosemary
1/4 tsp Grated Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Ground Cinnamon
Salt to taste

1 Pie Crust (9” unbaked deep dish crust with top)
1 Egg Yolk mixed with 1 Tbsp water for brushing top pie crust
1 Egg White for brushing unbaked pie crust

Mix the ground pork with the cornstarch and a generous pinch of salt.

Heat the oil in a non stick pan until hot and brown the pork on medium high heat until no longer pink (break up the meat as you brown it, so it will not be lumped together). Drain off the fat. Return the pork to the pan, add the garlic and onion and stirfry for 5 minutes. Add all the vegetables and spices, chicken stock or water and cook until the vegetables are just soft. Salt to taste. Set the filling aside to cool.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Brush your unbaked pie crust with the egg white to prevent the crust from getting soggy. Fill the pie shell with the cooled filling. Top with top crust; cut a few slits in the top crust for steam to escape. Brush the top crust with the egg yolk and water mixture. 

Bake for 15 min on the bottom rack of the oven, then reduce the heat to 375 F and bake for another 25 min until the crust is golden. Serve warm.

Note: This pie freezes well (uncooked or cooked). Pie can be frozen directly after assembly, with the dough still raw. Wrap well in plastic wrap and freeze. To cook, remove the pie from freezer and unwrap. Brush the top with a little beaten egg and place frozen meat pie in a preheated 375 degrees F till golden and heated through, about 50 min. To serve frozen cooked meat pie, remove from freezer for a few hours or overnight to thaw. Wrap in foil to keep it moist and warm in a low 300F oven until heated through.

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