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Traditional Veal Tourtiere

A Quebecois custom on Christmas Eve, this savoury pie is terrific for any dinner. This filling can be made ahead and frozen until you’re ready to serve it. Chili sauce or pickled beets on the side make perfect accompaniments.


  • 2 lb (1 kg) ground veal
  • 1 slice side bacon, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup (50 mL) finely chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup (50 mL) water
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • 1/4 tsp (1 mL) each pepper, dried sage, dried thyme, dried savoury and cloves
  • 1 potato, peeled and diced
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped fresh parley
  • 1 pastry for 9-inch (23 cm) double crust pie
  • 1 egg, beaten

Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes

In large saucepan, cook veal, bacon, onion, garlic and celery over medium heat, stirring, for about 10 minutes or until veal is no longer pink. Add water, salt, pepper, sage, thyme, savoury and cloves. Reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring, occasionally, for 20 minutes. Add potatoes and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes longer or until most of liquid is absorbed. Let cool. Stir in parsley.

Pour cooled filling into 9-inch (23 cm) pastry-lined deep pie plate. Brush edge of bottom pastry with egg. Cover pie with top pastry; fold edge over bottom pastry and crimp to seal. Cut steam vents in top: cut out pastry decorations from scraps, if desired. Brush top crust with egg; stick on decorations, if using. Brush with egg; refrigerate until chilled. Bake in 425°F (220°C) oven for 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350°F (180°C) and bake for about 20 minutes longer or until filling is hot and pastry is golden. Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Nutritional Information: 434 Calories * 28.7 g Protein * 23.9 g Fat * 26.0 g Carbohydrate

Helpful Tips: To make ahead, omit potatoes, cool filling and freeze in airtight container. Thaw in refrigerator; stir in partially cooked potatoes and fill pie crust. This recipe can easily be doubled to make 2 pies.

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