Evelyn Chartres Author

Ready to Serve Baked Potatoes

Featured_Ready_to_Serve_SpudsWhile not necessarily a French Canadian dish, it has been one of my go-to sides dishes for a while.  This dish combines all of the elements of baked potatoes into one dish (minus the sour cream and bacon).  The heat will melt the butter while it cooks the potatoes, onions and garlic to create this ready to eat dish.

Easy to prepare and cooks in the oven or barbecue while you work on the main dish.  You can also add in leftover chicken, pork or beef to make this a complete meal.

Ingredients

  • 12 oz (350 g) of potatoes
  • 2½ oz  (75 g) of minced onions
  • 2 cloves (7 g) of pressed garlic
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) of butter
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of Italian seasoning

Preparation

  1. Pre-heat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  2. Prepare two pieces of tin foil, approximately 12 x 15 inches (30 x 40 cm) in length.
  3. Scrub, rinse and cut up the potatoes into small cubes then place on the tin foil.
  4. Drop onions, garlic, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning atop potatoes.
  5. Top with butter and close up the first layer of tin foil.  Wrap in a second to prevent any leaks.
  6. Place in the oven and cook for 60 minutes.  Alternatively, place on an outdoor grill for the same amount of time.
  7. When done, pull from the oven, mix the contents and it is ready to serve.

Pâté Chinois a l’Aile

Garlic Shepherds Pie

Pâté chinois is a French Canadian dish similar to Shepherd’s Pie. It is made from layered ground beef, canned cream corn, and mashed potatoes on top.  This recipe is a variation that infuses the dish with garlic, you can vary the amount of garlic in the dish if you prefer a more subtle effect.

Pâté chinois is not Chinese cuisine. One theory is that dish was introduced to railway workers by Chinese cooks while building the railroad.

Ingredients

Ground Beef Layer

  • 1 pound (450g) of lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) of butter
  • 1 small onion (50g) chopped
  • 3 to 6 cloves of garlic (5 – 10g) pressed
  • ½ teaspoon of Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon of pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt

Corn Layer

  • 19 fl oz (540 ml) of cream-style corn

Potato Mash

  • 1 pound (450g) of potatoes
  • 1-2 tablespoons (15 – 30g) of garlic butter
  • ¼ cup (60ml) of milk

Preparation

  1. Pre-heat oven to 325°F (165°C).
  2. Melt butter in a pan then place ground beef, onion, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook on medium-high until the meat is golden brown.  Drain meat then layer on the bottom of a baking dish, pack it down lightly until layer is uniform.
  3. Pour cream corn into baking dish, cover ground beef layer uniformly.  Be sure to leave a few tablespoons of cream corn for later.
  4. Peel and chop potatoes, then boil until they  break apart by pressing against the side of the pot.
  5. Drain water then add garlic butter and milk.  Mash until you have a smooth mixture.  Spoon mashed potatoes into the baking dish, adding the third and final layer to the dish.
  6. Use remaining cream corn to cover the mashed potatoes.  This will prevent the potatoes from drying up in the oven.
  7. Place in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes to heat up concerts.  Comes out ready to serve.

Tourtière du Lac-Saint-Jean

The tourtières hailing from the Lac-Saint-Jean region in Québec are slow-cooked deep-dish meat pies made with potatoes and various meats cut into small cubes or diced.  Some families will serve it as-is or topped with a hunter sauce gravy or ketchup.

Ingredients

Crust*

  • 3 cups (705 ml) all-purpose flour
  • ½ pounds (225 g) of vegetable shortening
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of salt
  • Water as needed

Meat Pie

  • ½ pounds (225 g) pork minced**
  • ½ pounds (225 g) beef minced**
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 3 lbs (1.3 kg) potatoes, peeled and diced
  • Salt and pepper

Preparation

  1. In a large bowl, combine the meat, onion, garlic, and potatoes. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. In second large bowl, combine flour, shortening, baking powder, and salt.  Hand knead the mixture until malleable, it should not break apart or be too sticky to handle.
  3. Sprinkle a light layer of flour on a flat surface then drop ball in the middle. Use a rolling pin to flatten crust to a consistent thickness.
  4. Use a pot large enough to accommodate meat and potatoes. Place on top of the crust then cut out an area larger than bottom by about 2 inches (5 cm).  Make cutout of crust and place in the bottom of the pot.  Place some of the meat and potatoes composition crust is nearly covered.
  5. Build up the walls with crust until the entire mixture of meat and potatoes transferred to the pot.  Use the remaining crust to cover the pie entirely then punch a thumb-sized hole through the centre of the pie.
  6. Through punched hole, fill the meat pie with water until just below crust. Place the pie in the fridge (covered) for 5 hours or until ready to place in the oven.
  7. Start the oven and set to 325°F (170°C). Place pie in oven for about 30 minutes, giving the crust time to dry out.
  8. Drop temperature to 275°F (135°C), cover with tin foil then let contents stew for approximately 12 hours.
  9. Periodically check the pie to maintain water level. At about the 6-hour mark, refill for the last time to let the pie dry out a bit prior to serving.  You can adjust this step as necessary based on how often you need to replenish the water.
  10. Pull from the oven and scoop contents with a large serving spoon on plates.

*     Pre-made pie crusts may be used instead of making the crust from scratch.
**     Meat may be processed through a large-bore grinder to save time.