‘Tis the Season for Cooking Exchanges … and Pork Tortiere

Once a month, the Food Action Committee of the EAC meets to discuss current food issues, reflect on what we’ve accomplished and plan our next course of action. There are always delicious nibblies being passed around the room – of course.

For our December meeting, we decided to continue the tradition of a cookie exchange. There were pumpkin and orange cookies, chocolate biscotti, almond squares, shortbread cookies, gingerbread and gluten-free carrot cookies – just to name a few. After taking a moment to highlight the included local ingredients – Speerville flour being a big one – we dove in. Luckily, a few people brought savoury snacks to share as well – a tasty collection of items one might call “the cookie cushion”. There was a South Indian curry dish, a hearty kale and quinoa salad [I got my hands on that recipe and already made it at home!], a batch of Pakistani-style curry, and a gorgeous pork tortiere. Everything was delicious!

Arriving just a moment late and thus making a well-desired grand entrance, the pork tortiere took the room by surprise. The scent filled the room as the large tortiere was uncovered and placed in the centre of the table. Cheri, the chef behind this beautiful tortiere, had brought along the recipe – anticipating the many requests from the room of foodies. Cheri even came equipped with homemade apple sauce to accompany the pork. Mmmm.

Quebec Tortiere

1 lb. local organic ground pork
½ cup water
1 tablespoon of salt
¼ teaspoon each: summer savoury, cloves, celery seed, cinnamon
½ cup bread crumbs

Place all ingredients except bread crumbs in a pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes. Add bread crumbs and cool.
Make double crust (see Pat’s Pastry recipe below). Fill and bake at 400F until brown. Continue cooking at 350F until the pastry is entirely cooked.

Pat’s Pastry

5 cups Speerville spelt flour
1 lb. shortening/lard
2 teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder
2 dessert spoons of brown sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon white vinegar

Sift in all dry ingredients and cut in lard.
In a measuring cup, slightly beat 2 egg yolks. Fill to ¾ c up with cold water. Add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar. Add wet to dry ingredients by degrees.
Divide dough into two balls and roll out each.

Yours in food, Keltie

PS: If you want to share in the delicious treats and the thoughtful conversation, join us for our next FAC meeting on Monday, January 17th, 2011 5:30pm at the Ecology Action Centre!

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