Though typically served during the holiday season, the French-Canadian tourtière is a brilliant dish to have in cooler months in general. A warm, hearty meat pie is a delectable comfort food – perfect now that our weather has turned chillier. Traditionally, the contents of the pie vary depending upon the region you’re from; most commonly, finely ground pork is used; however veal, chicken, and other game (and sometimes even fish) have been used as well.
I decided to change up the traditional “deep dish” style pie and transform it into a canapé for a party (perhaps this Thanksgiving or later in the holidays)! This spin allows you to still have the decadence of tradition – just in smaller bites (so you have room for the rest of your dishes). Enjoy!
• 700 g ground pork
• 2 onions, finely chopped
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 stalk celery, minced
• 325 mL chicken stock
• 2 sprigs thyme, chopped
• salt and pepper
• 1 (generous) pinch each allspice, cinnamon and cloves
• 3 potatoes, peeled, boiled and diced
• 1 bunch parsley, chopped
• puff pastry (store bought, come in blocks)
• maple syrup or cranberry preserves
1. Preheat a medium pan and cook through the ground pork until it is no longer pink.
2. Drain excess fat from the pork mixture and set aside.
3. In the same pan, cook the onion, celery and garlic. Deglaze the pan with the stock, and add the thyme and spices.
4. Return the browned meat into the pan and continue cooking until the mixture is no longer wet.
5. Mix in the diced potato and parsley, season with salt and pepper to taste, then set aside this mixture until room temperature or cool completely.
6. On a cool, floured surface, roll out the thawed pastry to 1/8-inch thick, being sure to work quickly.
7. Cut the pastry into 2-inch circles (or squares).
8. “Dock” the center of the pastry with a fork to prevent rise, then place a heaping spoonful of tourtiere filling in the middle. Make sure to keep a clear border of pastry around the filling.
9. Lightly brush with an egg wash, then bake the pastries in an oven preheated to 375˚F for approximately 35–40 minutes or until golden and the filling is cooked through.
10. Serve warm with a brush of maple syrup or a dollop of cranberry preserves overtop!