Everyday Meals

Terri's Tourtiers (French-Canadian Santa Pies)


  • 5 cups water
  • 5 pounds lean ground pork
  • 3onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 ½ cups ground dry bread crumbs, or more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 5pastries for double-crust pies
  • Directions

  • Step 1

    Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan; crumble pork into the boiling water. Reduce heat and simmer until pork is no longer pink, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain water into a large bowl and transfer pork to a separate bowl; refrigerate pork. Refrigerate broth until fat separates from water, at least 1 hour.


  • Step 2

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

  • Step 3

    Place pork in a large skillet; add onions and salt. Cook and stir pork mixture over medium heat until onion is soft and translucent, 10 to 15 minutes.

  • Step 4

    Skim and discard the fat from the broth. Pour the remaining broth over the pork-onion mixture; stir in bread crumbs and allspice until well mixed. Add more bread crumbs if mixture is runny. Remove skillet from heat.

  • Step 5

    Press 5 pie crusts into five 9-inch pie dishes. Divide ground pork mixture among the 5 prepared pie crusts. Place 1 pie crust over each pie, crimping edges together to seal. Cut slits into the top crust of each pie for ventilation.

  • Step 6

    Bake in the preheated oven until pies are golden brown, about 1 hour.

  • Cook's Notes:

    Ask your butcher to grind a nice, lean pork roast to make assembly even easier.

    The meat mixture should not be runny and should be rather thick so it holds up firmly when you slice the pie into wedges.

    Wrap the extra pies in aluminum foil and freeze for gifts or future use. To cook the frozen pies, preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Unwrap bake frozen pie until cooked through, about 1 hour.

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