Aren’t the best recipes the most simple ones? The ones families have been cooking and passing down from generation to generation? The ones we eat when we gather to celebrate, you know, the classics? The chicken and noodle soups, chocolate cakes, fruits pies. This is one of those recipes. 

I am going to write this recipe to you the same way my mom mentioned it to me on the phone. It’s not conventional, but that’s exactly how it needs to be shared, as if we were having a chat about our favourite recipes. This tourtière was inspired by the traditional meat pie eaten during the holidays in Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean, where some of my roots come from. As usual, I added my own twist on it by letting the meat marinate in beer and broth overnight. Can’t hurt, right?

What recipes will you be sharing with your loved ones during the holidays?

10-16 servings


First, you need to prepare the meat the day before. I got about 4.5 lbs of rough meat cuts, a mix of beef, pork and veal. This recipe would also be delicious with game meat like venison or rabbit. Ask your butcher what cuts aren’t too expensive and good for braising. Cut the meat in small cubes of approximately 1-2 cm. Place in a bowl. Cut 2 mediums size onions in really small pieces, adding them to the meat. Pour 1 cup of stout and 3 cups of chicken or beef broth then mix together. Drop a few sprigs of thyme and a few bay leaves on top. Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight in the fridge. 

You can also prepare a double batch of pie dough the night before. Here’s a link to the recipe I used. You can also use store-bought pie doughs. The morning of, peel and cut approximately 2 lbs of yellow potatoes (about half of the volume of meat you have) in pieces the same size as you cut the meat. At this point, heat the oven to 350°F.

Roll the pie dough and place in a greased rectangular baking dish of approximately 25x35cm. Cut the excess dough and keep them to roll to cover the tourtière. Crack an egg in a small bowl and mix with a brush. Cover the inner surface of the dough with the egg wash to seal it. Discard the thyme and bay leaves, drain the meat and reserve the liquid. To start filling the pie, alternate between a layer of meat and potatoes, salting generously between each. Repeat until the dish is full. Add the reserved liquid to the dish until it’s about half full. Brush the edges of the dough with the egg wash. Roll the leftover dough and top the dish assuring to seal the edges of the pie. Cut a circle in the middle of the tourtière and insert an aluminum chimney so that the steam from the inside can get out. You can also use a hollowed out cut of beef bone as your chimney.

Place the tourtière in the oven and bake for an hour. After an hour, lower the temperature to 250°F and bake for at least 5 hours and up to 7. Keep an eye on the crust and if it browns too fast, cover the pie loosely with aluminum, making sure you don’t cover the chimney. The tourtière is ready when the liquid has erupted from the chimney and caramelized over the dough. Let it sit for 30 minutes before serving.

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Hi! I’m Steph. Originally from Montréal, I moved to Toronto in 2015. I spend my days working at the most quaint Swedish coffee shop making cinnamon buns and adding cardamom to everything I bake. In this blog, I want to share with you recipes that remind me of home, travel stories filled with new food discoveries and the restaurants, coffee shops and bakeries I love to visit most in my new city.