Hey everyone! How is your week going so far? Anyone else enjoying the #AprilArmsChallenge as much as I am so far? I am still battling a nasty head cold, but trying to push through it and sweat it out when I can!
Today was the first day in probably a month where I was able to come right home after work and I cannot tell you how nice that feeling was. The only problem with coming home early, though, is that I don’t know what to do with “extra” time and am horrible at relaxing. What’s a girl to do besides pour a big glass of vino and think about what to do to fill the time (please tell me I am not the only one who suffers with relaxing and enjoying free time!)?
(Recycled Photo, but you get the idea. Tonight was actually red wine. I heard it helps with congestion 😉 )
Dinner didn’t take me much longer than 20 minutes to prepare, but that is because the hard part of the meal was already done thanks to my dad! Both of my parents are 100% French Canadian, so having Tourtiere (aka Pork Pie for the non-Frenchie readers) around Christmas is a big tradition for us. According to every friend and family member who has tried dad’s Tourtiere can attest that he makes the absolute BEST around. Seriously. People pretty much place orders in November. Lucky for you (anyone who might be looking to indulge a little, but as dad said on the phone today “don’t drain the excess liquid. The saltines soak it up. Just have a smaller piece if you’re watching your waist”), he has agreed to share the recipe. It all sounded so familiar since Danielle and I spent a few hours with him right before Christmas making 9 (I think) of them!
Note: it’s 1 pound of ground pork per 1/2 pound of onions and 1/2 pound of potatoes. Use this ratio if you plan to make a bigger batch than what is below. He said he usually makes a batch with 10-12 lbs. of pork.
- 1 lb. ground pork
- 1/2 lb. onions
- 1/2 lb. potatoes
- 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 tsp. Red Hot
- 1 tsp. All Spice (this is key- you don’t want to add too much of this! A little goes a long way!)
- 1/2 sleeve crushed Saltine crackers
- Pie Crust
1. Place the pork and onions in a big pot. Add the Worcestershire and Red Hot and stew until onions are translucent and meat is fully cooked.
2. While pork and onions are stewing, boil your potatoes. When cooked, “smash” them, which means leave the skin on when you mash them. Mix the smashed potatoes into the pork/onion mixture and mix well. Add the All Spice.
3. Crush up 1/2 sleeve of saltine crackers (1/2 sleeve per pound of meat) and add to the meat/onion/potato “pudding” as dad called it (clearly we have different ideas of what “pudding” is). He said this is key to soaking up the excess liquid and helping to keep the pie filling together when slicing and serving.
4. Place the pie crust into a pie dish and spoon in the mixture. Bake at 400* for about 15 minutes (or until the pie crust has browned up).
(my own mini pork pie that dad sent me home with!)
To accompany the pork pie that I thawed, I wanted to make my favorite veggie dish that my mom makes in the summer: Tomato and Zucchini Casserole. This is SUPER easy and so tasty!
Tomato & Zucchini Casserole (small version)
- 1 medium zucchini
- 2 small tomatoes
- herbs & seasoning of your choice
- 1/4-1/2 cup of cheese (can be parmesan or Italian blend or whatever you have on hand
1. Slice up the zucchini and tomatoes.
2. You’re going to layer these in a small casserole dish. In between each layer, sprinkle in some herbs/seasoning and a sprinkle of cheese. Repeat until you’ve used up all your veggies. Top with extra cheese and microwave for 4-5 minutes to speed up the cooking. Bake at 400* for about 10 minutes to brown everything up!
This meal reminded me so much of a meal cooked at home with mom and dad and I loved it!
Questions for you: What meals remind you of home? Do you have any “traditional” meals that your family makes around the holidays?