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French Canadian Recipes
American French Genealogical Society  French Canadian Recipes 
Additional Recipes are listed in the AFGS Grandmère Cookbook - Order online
NOTE: The recipes listed below may not be in our current cookbook.


This is a very old Canadian recipe that was handed down from one generation to the next. It is still as good today as it was then. This was Grandma Gauthier's favorite dessert. I still can remember how happy she was when she ate this dessert.

2 cups cake flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 tbsps. butter
3/4 cup milk
2 cups maple syrup
2 cups water

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in butter with pastry blender. Add milk and mix well. Combine maple syrup with water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Drop the dough in the hot maple syrup by the tablespoonful. Cover and cook 25 minutes. Serve very hot, pouring over them the syrup in which they were cooked.

Therese Roy
North Providence, RI


There are few foods which will clunk more satisfyingly to the bottom of your gut or stick more to your ribs: poutine, the quintessential pig-out dish from Québec. Pronounced poo-TEEN, the classical version is a heap of crispy golden fries piled
in a disposable bowl, mixed with cheese curds, then smothered in piping hot beef gravy. The stuff has in the past been hard to come by outside of Canada, but it is catching on as desperate French-Canadians export it to places like Florida, California, New York, France, and other poutine-bereft areas where they find themselves stranded.

Although scores of different versions now exist, this artery-clogging junk food was invented in the early 195Os, when a customer walked into a restaurant in Warwick, Québec, called "The Laughing Goblin" [Le Lutin Qui Rit], and special-ordered a pile of "frites" with brown gravy and cheese. The chef remarked, "That's a real mess", using the Québecois slang word for mess, which is "poutine", and dished it up. It was incorporated into his menu, and the rest is history.

There seems to be general agreement as to the original and optimum method of preparation:

Homemade fries, not frozen but ones actually cut off of potatoes in fat sticks, are fried golden, and placed in a bowl containing a handful of a particular type of cheese curd called "fromage en grain". It is not surprisingly a cheese named Kingsley, native to the Warwick area, mild, stringy and white, but not mozzarella or cheddar, similar perhaps to Monterey Jack, but shaped in many small lumps. More of this cheese is dumped on top of the fries, and then the entire melting mass is covered with preferably homemade and extremely hot brown beef gravy. The pile as it cools quickly coagulates into something resembling
cement, and must be scarfed in haste, but not so soon that you burn the roof of your mouth.

There are some famous and not-so-famous variations on this theme, although the fries and cheese are considered the Traditional Constant.

o "Poutine du Lac Long" has chopped beef and fried onions added.
o "Poutine Italienne" has, as one might suspect, spaghetti sauce instead.
o "Galvaude" is a poutine with chunks of chicken and green peas mixed in.

The concoction, whatever its ingredients, is admittedly hard on the stomach, an experience not helped by the fact that the traditional liquid accompaniment is lots and lots of beer. These potatoes are for couch potatoes, and exercise of any sort alter consumption is not recommended.

2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic
1-6 lb. leg of lamb
1 1/2 cups tomato juice
1 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper

Make slits in the lamb and fill with sliver of garlic clove. Place in a large roasting pan. Beat sugar and olive oil together until sugar melts. Rub mixture all over the lamb.

Mix tomato juice, oregano, salt and pepper together and pour half of it over the meat. Roast in 425 degrees F oven for 15 minutes. Turn oven heat down to 350 degrees F and cook for another 1 1/2 hours. About halfway through roasting, pour remainder of tomato mixture over. Baste often.


The following 3 Tourtiere recipes indicate a few of the variations according to the regions within the Province of Quebec.
1-1/4 lbs. lean ground pork
¼ tsp. Ground cinnamon
¾ lbs. lean ground beef
¼ tsp. Ground cloves
1 onion, finely chopped
½ cup water
1 tsp. Salt pastry for two crust pie (9")
1/8 tsp. Pepper
Put all ingredients except pastry into a saucepan and cook covered slowly about 1 hour, until meat is tender and liquid cooked down. 
Stir occasionally. Let meat mixture cool before putting in pie plate. Put bottom crust in pie plate, spread mixture evenly and put on top crust. Trim and crimp edges. Slash to let out steam. 
Place in 400 degree oven until light brown , 25 to 30 minutes, depending on oven.
1-1/2 lbs. ground pork
¼ tsp. Allspice
½ cup finely chopped onion
1/8 tsp. Pepper
2 large potatoes (1 lb.)
1 egg yolk
½ tsp. Salt
In a medium saucepan, combine pork, onion and ½ cup water; mix well. Cook covered over low heat 2 hours. Meanwhile peel potatoes; quarter. Cook in a small amount of salted boiling water until tender. Drain. Add potato to meat mixture along with salt, allspice and pepper; mash with a potato masher. 
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Roll half of pastry to make an 11" circle; fit into bottom of a 9" pie plate. Turn mixture into pie plate. Roll other half of dough to make 11" circle. Adjust pastry over top; crimp edges, make several slashes in top for steam vents. Mix egg yolk with 2 tbsp. water; use to brush over pastry. Bake 20 minutes or until pastry is golden brown. 
This is a more modern version; with less fat; but just as tasty.
1 lb. Lean ground beef
¼ tsp. Cinnamon
½ lb. Lean ground pork
¼ tsp. Ground cloves
½ lb. Ground veal
½ tsp. Onion powder
1 bay leaf
salt & pepper to taste
Instant potato flakes, as needed 2 Packages Pillsbury pie crust
Put ground meats and seasoning in a heavy pan. Brown on medium heat, stirring as needed. When meat mixture is no longer pink, add just enough water to cover the mixture. 
Simmer covered, stirring as needed, for about 1-1/2 hours to let flavors develop and to be sure pork is fully cooked. Remove from heat. Sprinkle instant potato flakes in pan to absorb the meat juices and stir well. If more juices rise to surface, sprinkle a little more potato flakes until all liquid is absorbed and stir. Remove bay leaf. 
Let meat mixture cool before turning into pie crusts. I find it easier to prepare the meat mixture one day and assemble the pies in another day or two. This mixture also freezes well and could be made well in advance.
Line two 8" or 9" pie pans with crust. Turn in meat mixture. Add top crust. Trim crust and slash to allow steam to vent. These pies can be frozen unbaked until you need them.
To bake put thawed pies in 375 degree oven for about 45 to 50 minutes.

Pea Soup
From AFGS News May June edition 2005
We were pleased to hear from people who tried the fudge recipe. It really is good isn't it? This month we are including a recipe for pea soup. Traditional Canadian is made with whole yellow peas but our cookbook offers several variations. We are using a recipe submitted by Mrs. Florence Shallow Vint from Littleton Co. It was her grandmother's recipe and had been in her family for many generations. It is simple to make and is oh so good. Enjoy!
2 c. dried whole yellow peas
2 qt. water
1 onion, minced 1/2 # salt pork or 1 tsp. chopped parsley ham hocks or 1 tsp. sage pepper to taste
1 minced carrot (for flavor)
For less salty soup, boil ham hocks or salt pork for 5 minutes. Discard water and set aside. Soak peas in cold water overnight. Don't drain. Add onion, carrot (if desired), salt pork or ham and seasoning. Simmer at least 3 to 4 hours or until peas are soft. You could also use ham or a ham bone left over from dinner. Corn bread is very good served with pea soup.
This and other traditional recipes may be found in the AFGS cookbook - Je Me Souviens La Cuisine De La Grandmere.

From AFGS News July August edition 2005
This is an old recipe, a variation of which was made in most Canadian homes. Every housewife had her own particular way of preparing this recipe. It was a dish that pleased the family and one that is recalled with fondness. The recipe was sent to us by Therese Roy of North Providence, RI.
1 lb lean ground beef
Hint of ground cloves
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 whole onion
Pinch of poultry seasoning
Mix meat and seasonings. Shape into 1 inch meatballs. Put enough water in saucepan to cover meatballs. Bring to a boil. Add whole onion. Add 1 meatball at a time so water does not stop boiling. Cook until meat is white - about 30 minutes. Remove onion. Thicken water with flour and add more salt and pepper as needed. Serve over rice or noodles or by itself. Enjoy. 
This and other traditional recipes may be found in the AFGS cookbook - Je Me Souviens La Cuisine De La Grandmere.

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Updated 26 May, 2010