Traditions are integral to any good holiday celebration. My family’s tradition each Christmas eve is a throwback from when my Irish and English relatives camped out for a generation in Montreal. My Grandmother would serve this every X-mas eve, equal parts pork and beef, with buttery crust that barely contained the rich and comforting innards.
I carry on this tradition, pairing my little pork pie with a savoury tomato chutney, take that Heinz 57!
2 1/2 cups of flour
1 cup of super cold shortening, cut up into cubes
1 egg yolk
5 tbsp of ice water, cubes still in, and a slotted spoon to weave them out of the way
1 tbsp of vinegar
1 tsp of salt
6 slices of super thick cut bacon
2 lbs of ground pork
1 cup of diced white onion
2 cloves of garlic, diced
1 tsp of summer savoury
pinch of cloves
pinch of cinnamon
First, make the crust. In a large bowl, sift flower with salt. Add cubes of cold shortening and cut through the flour until the shortening resemble small beads. Don’t over work the dough!
In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk, ice water and vinegar. Pour the mixture into the flour/shortening mix and knead until completely blended, but don’t over do-it! Get the dough wrapped under cling wrap and let it chill in the fridge for 1-2 hours.
On the stove top, place bacon in a large dutch oven or if you got one, a Le Creuset. Cook until done, about 3 mins. Remove bacon from pot, and set aside. Add pork to the same pan, using the drippings as oil to cook through. Season with salt and pepper and remove from pot when completely cooked. Set aside with the bacon. Add onions, garlic, summer savoury, cloves and cinnamon to pot. Add a cup of water to deglaze the pan and scrape to lift up some of the brown bits from the pork. Return pork and bacon to pot and simmer until all the water is gone, then remove from heat.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Roll dough out to a pie shape format. Bonus extra points if you fashion a pig for a decoration. Fill pie, cover pie, don a pig, then egg wash. Bake for 30-45 mins or until brown, almost bubbly and smelling so good you want to gnaw your own arm off. Let cool for about 20 mins before carving in.