Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Pie’ Category

Surprise! Welcome to my Northwest Territories Kitchen. I’ve somehow found a new place to call home, amidst the tail-end of the boreal forest treeline, on the shores of the Great Slave Lake. I think this is going to be a great year for Gourm(eh) on my end – I’ll be exploring Canadian food from the Northern perpective, something I’ve always wanted to do. There are still a few weeks of fishing left (hopefully) before we break until the ice can hold us safely. The rose-hips are lonely without their leaves, just waiting to be picked and turned into jelly. The days are getting shorter at an unbelieveable rate – and although I’ll miss the sun, I’m really excited for the northern lightshow, with a mug of hot chocolate.

I’ve been here for a week now, and while I was hoping to share a traditional dish right away, I’m going to start with this tarte la francaise, in hommage to all the wonderful francophone people I’ve met in the community. Without an internet connection of my own, I’m dependent on the public library, and neighbours around me, who have generously offered me their internet connection. Tired of going up to see them for their internet, I decided to pay them back with a warm little apple pie tonight, like my Grandmother makes in Normandy.

1 shortcrust pastry

1-2 tart apples, quartered, cored, and thinly sliced

1/4-1/2 cup whipping cream

2 Tbsp sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

pinch nutmeg

1 egg

Make the short crust pastry at least 30 minutes in advance, and refrigerate. Preheat oven to 400f. Slice apples finely with a sharp knife. Dip in a dilute lemon juice solution and drain so they don’t brown.

Once oven is ready, roll crust out to 3cm wider diameter than a tart dish (or a pie dish). Place in dish, and press edges down to have a nice thick outer crust. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork. Freeze for about 10 minutes.

Arrange apples on cooled crust in a thin layer. Bake in oven for 25-30 minutes until apples begin to soften and crust becomes lightly golden on edges.

Meanwhile, whisk the cream, egg, sugar, and spices together, and refrigerate until apples are softened.

Spoon cream mixture over apples and bake for another 25 minutes or so, or until set and slightly golden.

Enjoy with vanilla-infused whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Bon appetit,

-Sitelle

Read Full Post »

This pie only confirms a universal truth: chocolate and peanut butter are a match made in heaven. Nested between a chocolate crumb crust and a smooth ganache is a peanut butter cheese cake.  It’s hard to imagine a more delicious combination…

This is one of the more ingenious recipes in Joy of Cooking. 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

(1 9- or 10-inch pie)

 

INGREDIENTS

Crumb crust:

1 ½ cups chocolate wafer crumbs

¼ cup sugar (depending on the sweetness of the cookies)

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) of unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 teaspoon cinnamon
 

Peanut Butter Filling:

8 ounces cream cheese (1 block)

1 cup peanut butter

½ cup sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 cup whipping cream
 

Ganache:

¾ cup whipping cream

1 tablespoon instant coffee granules

8 ounces finely chopped semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
 
 
DIRECTIONS

Crumb crust:

In a bowl, combine crumb crust ingredients. Press into a 10-inch pie or springform pan, and bake for 10 to 12 minutes in a 350°F oven.

Cool the crust before filling (can be done in the fridge/freezer).
 

Peanut Butter filling:

Beat in a large bowl until smoothly blended the cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla.

In a medium bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form.Using a spatula, fold in half of the whipped cream into the peanut mixture to lighten it, and then fold in the remaining cream.

Spread the mixture into the crust, press a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pie and refrigerate until firm, about four hours (or if you are in a rush, throw it in the freezer).
 
Chocolate Ganache:

Bring the whipping cream to a boil, stirring in the instant coffee.  Remove from heat and add chocolate. Stir until most of the chocolate has melted. Cover and let stand 10 minutes, then stir/whisk gently until completely smooth. Let cool to lukewarm and then pour over the pie and spread evenly.  Refrigerate for at least 1 hour (again, you can also use the freezer) and up to 3 days.

Serve with masses of whipped cream and salted peanuts for an absolutely delicious dessert.  Eat slowly – you will want to savour each and every bite!
 
– Catherine

Read Full Post »

Today is a very special day – 3/14 – the best excuse of the year to make pie!

So in honour of pi day, I share below my five favourite pies from last year.  May your days be filled with delicious pie!

– Catherine

 

Tourtiere – Easily my favourite savoury pie, this traditional Quebecois meat pie is a treat!

White Chocolate Cranberry Tart with Toasted Pistachios  – This combination of tart cranberries, nutty pistachios, and smooth chocolate is elegant and stunning. 

Raspberry Glacee Pie – If you ever need to bribe my mother, look no farther.  This delicate raspberry pie is truly divine served with whipped cream.



Pumpkin Pie – Nothing screams autumn more than impeccably spiced pumpkin pie.

Chocolate Hazelnut Pie –  Whipped hazelnut cream filling topped with chocolate ganache.  Need I say more?

Read Full Post »

A few of my family and friends have begun to complain about the lack of Canadian cuisine on a blog partially dedicated to Canadian food!  I plan to remedy this over the next few months, but for now, I leave you with a recipe for tourtière, a delightful Quebecois dish.

True tourtière lovers are passionate about this dish – some even refusing to call certain meat pies tourtière if they are not “authentic” enough.   I myself am not fussy about the recipe as long as it is perfectly moist!  There is nothing more disappointing after smelling this dish than to take your first bite and despair at its dryness.   Luckily, my grandmother’s recipe is the antithesis of dry tourtière – deliciously moist and full of flavour, there is everything to love about this meat pie.

Instead of a double crust, I often oft for a lattice, which is far prettier and makes for lighter dinner fare.  While many people use broth to moisten their pie and spices such as cinnamon and cloves to spice it, this recipe’s secret ingredient is cream of mushroom soup.  It adds just the perfect amount of creaminess, while retaining the richness in flavour.  This recipe makes enough for two pies, so we traditionally savour this dish on Christmas Eve, freezing the second one to enjoy a few weeks later!

Tourtière

(makes two 9-inch deep crust pies)

 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef

1 1/2 lbs lean ground pork

1 small onion, minced

1/2 cup HP sauce

1 cup chili sauce

1 10-oz tin of cream of mushroom soup

1 Tbsp dry mustard

3 Tbsp Worcester sauce

***********************

Pastry for 2 9-inch double crusts or a lattice 

***********************

Beaten egg white

 

Directions:

Brown meat and onions.  Drain fat, add remaining ingredients, and cook over medium heat for 45 minutes. (If you taste test at this point, don’t worry if the flavour is slightly odd – as it simmers, the flavours will mellow and meld together beautifully).  Cool meat mixture.

Meanwhile, roll out pastry to fit pie plates.  Divide meat mixture evenly between the two pies, and top with pastry (or lattice).  Pierce pastry with fork to create steam vents.  Brush the pastry with beaten egg white.

Bake at 400 F for 20 minutes.  Let pies cool slightly and enjoy!  Delicious served with pickled mustard relish or fruit chutney.

To freeze pies: cool, wrap, and freeze for up to three months.  To serve, thaw overnight in fridge and reheat before serving.

Bon appetit!

– Catherine

Read Full Post »

Although this particular recipe is my own invention, it is based on an idea my mother came up with. And the best part is that it’s more delicious, easier, and more novel than the usual crumble (well, perhaps not after this post – but I’m ok with that). With this dessert, not only do you have the delicious crumble topping and the warm apple, but you also have a flakey crust. And the trick is that the crumble topping is made primarily with wholesome granola!

All the pies I made 20 minutes ago have already vanished – which I take to mean it was a success.

In September I moved to Montréal, and I shared these pies with my new house-mates. They were made with apples I picked right off a tree during my lunch break while working in the field at a switch-grass farm. I hope you can enjoy these pies often during the cold winter months!

Ingredients – makes 6 small 4-inch pies

-1 quantity sweet shortcrust pastry

-4 apples, cored and diced
-1 tsp cinnamon
-2 Tbsp brown sugar
-1/4 cup pecan pieces

-1 cup granola
-1 Tbsp flour
-1-2 Tbsp brown sugar
-1-2 Tbsp butter, cut into small pieces

Directions

Prepare your sweet shortcrust pastry 30 minutes in advance. Preheat oven to 350. Grease 6 small tart pans (I used the small 4-inch tin pans available at the supermarket). Roll out dough after it has rested, and cut it into 6 circles to fit into the pie shells. Prick the crust on the bottom and sides, then place in the oven for 15 minutes to partially blind-bake it.

Meanwhile, crush the pecans into small chunks. Mix with the cinnamon and brown sugar. In a separate bowl, mix the granola, flour, brown sugar, and butter. Once the crusts are set, quickly cut the apples and mix into the brown sugar, pecan, and cinnamon mixture. Place 1/6 of the apple mixture in a heaping pile in each pie, then top with the granola topping.

Bake for 45 minutes, until the apples are in their melt-in-your-mouth stage. Serve alone, with vanilla yogurt/ice cream, or lightly sweetened whipped cream!

-Sitelle


Read Full Post »

Thanksgiving is perhaps my favourite holiday of the year.  I love the crisp air and colourful leaves and changing of the season.  More than any other holiday, I love the meaning behind this tradition – to reflect upon and give thanks for the blessings in our lives.  And importantly, it’s a great excuse to cook up a turkey feast to be served with good wine and eaten with good company!

Pumpkin Pie waiting to be eaten

If I survive my thesis proposal defence this Friday, my friend Alex and I will be cooking Thanksgiving dinner for just over a dozen friends this weekend. No Thanksgiving dinner is complete without pumpkin pie.  Last weekend, I celebrated “Fake Thanksgiving” (one can never eat too many Thanksgiving dinners) – and decided to use the opportunity to test Silver Palate’s pumpkin pie recipe.   Perhaps the only thing better than one pumpkin pie is two.

Like any Silver Palate recipe, this pie was decadent, spiced to perfection and filled with a scary amount of cream (who would dare count calories on Thanksgiving anyways?). When I doubled the recipe, I had extra purred pumpkin, so I just added the extra to the filling, and the pie was extra pumpkiny.  One dangerous find was caramelized roasted pumpkin seeds from the Halifax market, which added a lovely crunch.  Served with whipping cream, this recipe aced the test, so I’ll definitely be whipping up another two pies this weekend for the real deal!

Silver Palate’s Pumpkin Pie

(makes one 9-inch pie)

Ingredients:

3 eggs

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup light brown sugar

2 cups canned pureed pumpkin (make sure you buy unseasoned pumpkin puree)

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

Pinch of salt

3/4 cup heavy cream

3/4 cup half-and-half

1 unbaked pie crust

For garnish, pecan halves and toasted pumpkin seeds

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 450 Farhenheit. Beat the eggs and both sugars together in a mixing bowl, until light and fluffy.  Stir in the pumpkin puree, spices, and salt and mix thoroughly.  Stir in the cream and half-and-half.

Roll out the pastry on a slightly floured work surface and line a 9-inch bake pan with it; trim and crimp the edges.  Pour in the filling.

Bake the pie for 8 minutes, then reduce the heat to 325 Fahrenheit and bake until the filling is set and slightly puffed (a knive inserted in the center will come out clean), another 40 to 45 minutes.

Arrange the pecan halves decoratively around the edges, pressing them lightly into the warm filling.  Cool completely before cutting.  Delicious served with whipped cream!

– Catherine

Read Full Post »

Peach Pie

You know you have had a spoiled week when you get to eat peach pie twice in one week.  Ontario peaches are at their height, so it is certainly worth enjoying them!

 

This past weekend, two of my closest high school friends visited Ottawa – one who currently lives in Vancouver and the other who had spent a large part of her last two years in Switzerland and Italy.  We spent a lovely weekend at my cottage with two other good friends, where among playing cards, canoeing and swimming, we ate a delicious peach pie for dessert.

 

This past week was the last for my summer practicum.  With ripe peaches in the kitchen and skies threatening rain (suggesting perhaps I should drive instead of risk a 30 km bicycle commute), I decided to bring in a peach pie to share with my colleagues.  I am sad to be leaving my position, but also excited to soon be back in Halifax to work full time on my thesis.

 

This peach pie is remarkably simple, without other spices, allowing the peaches’ flavour to shine through.   The riper the peaches, the juicier your pie will be.  Served with a touch of ice cream, you certainly cannot go wrong. Bon appétit!

Peach Pie

(one 9 inch pie, about 8 slices)

 

Ingredients:

1 sweet piecrust, plus extra for a lattice  or top crust if desired

8 ripe peaches

half a lemon

¾ cup of white sugar

¼ cup flour

 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 Fahrenheit.

 

Meanwhile scald the peaches . (To scald them, place the ripe peaches in a large bowl and cover with boiling water.   Allow them to sit for a minute or two, before using a paring knife to gently peel away the skin, which should mostly fall off).

 

Slice them into a bowl before adding the sugar, flour and lemon juice.  Add a little extra flour if the peaches are particularly ripe and juicy.

 

Transfer the mixture into the rolled out piecrust.  Weave the lattice over the peach filling.  Bake the pie for about 45 minutes or until the pie is bubbling and crust is lightly browned.   (If you are worried that the filling will boil over, place a tray on the oven rack underneath the cooking pie).  Cool and serve!

 

– Catherine

 

 

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »