The first Acadians to settle in Canada were mostly farmers, soldiers and craftspeople. Many came from rural areas of mid-west France and brought with them the agrarian and culinary traditions of their native France. Their diet resolved around the agricultural products that they brought with them from France and those introduced to them by the Amerindians such as, seasonal fruits of nature, fishing and hunting. During the Spring and Summer months, wild game and fish provided settlers with a steady source of protein, while the family gardens provided peas and a large variety of other vegetables.
Among the agricultural products that the Acadians adopted from the Amerindians were corn, beans, and squash, known to the Amerindians as”The Three Sisters”. These products were the result of the companion-planting of corn, beans and squash each beneficial to the other. The sturdy corn stalk gave the beans vine support; the beans produced nitrogen for the corn and the squash nines; shaded the grounds, keeping down weeds and conserving moisture in the soil. Not only did the Amerindians plant the Three Sisters crop together, but they believed that these vegetables were supposed to be eaten together. One dish that resulted in this concept was SUCCOTASH.
The Acadian farmers found the land in Acadia, protected by mountain ridges and suitable for growing wheat, buckwheat, corn, turnips, cabbage, potatoes and beans. They grew fruit such as pears, apples, plums, and cherries. They supplemented their diet with wild game such as moose, bear, rabbit, partridge, geese, ducks, teal, plover, pigeons and marsh birds and they fished for cod, salmon, shad, bass, eel, smelt and a variety of shell fish. Staples of the Acadian diet included herring, cod, potatoes, pork (mostly in the form of salt pork) and local grains made into pancakes (plogues), biscuits and bread.
During the months of August, the Acadians harvested wheat, barley and rye… and transported their grain to local mills for grinding. Although the Acadians raised a lot of cattle, sheep and pigs, they did not eat a lot of meat, especially veal or any other young animal. In Autumn, the most surplus livestock were allocated for trade, or sold outright. They slaughtered their animals only when they were no longer fit to use as work animals or able to provide them with milk, eggs, wool etc.. When they did, the choicer cuts of meat were sold, Some beef and pork was consumed immediately, but most of the meat salted for use during the approaching Winter
The Acadians had an affinity for salt pork. Turnips and cabbages were staple of their Winter diet. The cabbages were allowed to remain in the snow-covered field until they were gathered in small amounts for immediate consumption. The turnips were harvested and stored in cellars.
A portion of the apple crop was made into cider. Alcohol was available (both imported and smuggled rum) and home-made wine and cider however, the beverage preferred by the Acadians, was spruce-sprout beer.
Like in other areas of French Canada, some of the recipes brought to Acadia from France generations ago, are still made exactly as they were in Europe. Others were adapted to the foods and the way of life in Acadia, resulting in a combination of true French cuisine, Acadian-French alterations and many dishes that were born in Acadia and had never been served in any other country.
Traditional recipes evolved mainly from the use of foods that could be stored for the long cold Winters and every home maintained a supply of dried salt codfish, potatoes and salted pork fat and, a favourite dish was a combination of these ingredients. Some other favourites wereGROSSE SOUPE (a hearty soup of beef shank, onions, herbs, beans, peas, green beans, cabbage, turnips, corn, carrots and potatoes;RAPURE (a baked casserole of a mixture of salt pork, pork fat, onions, grated and mashed potatoes); and MIOCHE AU NAVEAU (mashed potatoes and turnips). Buttered bread spread with molasses often served as dessert. Pastries and cakes were reserved for Sundays, but dishes such as pancakes (plogues) and poutines (dumplings) would be considered ‘special’ desserts today. Potatoes provided the staple of the Acadian diet and, boiled in meat or fish stock, made a wholesome and satisfying dish called FRICOT.
They supplemented their diets with wild game such as black bear, moose, snowshoe hare (rabbits) and partridges, Canada goose, ducks, plover marsh birds and the now extinct passenger pigeon. They also fished for salt water cod, salmon, shad, stripped bass, eel, smelt and a variety of shell fish.
Following the expulsion of the Acadians, those who escaped the deportation and those who returned and resettled mostly along the coastal areas, found themselves in a completely different environment that they had been accustomed… isolated culturally, the Acadians had to respond to new and different circumstances, forcing them to make the most of what they had. Unlike their forebears who had continued agrarian traditions brought from France, the resettled Acadians living by the sea, lost their agricultural and culinary traditions and put new ones in their place. By necessity, they learned to tap the rich resources of the sea. Over time, the struggle to put food on the table developed into a unique culinary tradition and imaginative response to the land and the sea.
Unlike the staples of the Acadian diet, the gaspereau and shad which served as important secondary sources of protein, required less cooking but higher temperatures. Hence, fish were usually fried in oil… probably bear oil (much to the chagrin of French travelers) because butter was practically unknown in Acadia.
On the whole, Acadian cooking was uncomplicated, keeping the number of ingredients to a minimum and the method of preparation simple. In fact, many dishes were a one-pot meal, such as FRICOTS and CHOWDERS. If there is one dish that could be called “typically Acadian”, it would be FRICOT, which is a soup containing potatoes and meat (usually chicken), fish and/or seafood. Although a fricot may vary from one region to another, to this day the dish will always have the same basic ingredients… meat and potatoes in a hearty broth, with dumplings called poutines or grand-pères. Fricots are rich in calories and, with fresh bread… “a meal in themselves”! Fricots and poutine rapéescontinue to be a central part of today’s Acadian cuisine, together with meat pies and paté à la rapures… followed by poutines a trous.
Ordinary meals did not usually include a dessert and the main meal was often followed by bread and molasses, or included pancakes and dumplings (called POUTINES).
The morning meal (breakfast) was usually the heartiest and was served after they had worked-up an appetite from the morning chores and would BOUDIN (blood pudding), CRETONS, GRILLADES and TOURTIERES (meat pies) as well as leftovers from the previous day’s meals. The three meals of the day were called déjeuner (breakfast), dîner (dinner) and souper (supper).
Age-old Acadian cooking techniques remained fundamentally unaltered throughout the late eighteenth century, despite radical changes in their diet. The Acadians utilized two main cooking techniques; boiling or frying in chaudrons (black cast-iron pots). Turnips and cabbages were cooked by boiling together into a “soupe de la Toussaint”, an extremely popular pre-expulsion delicacy during Winter months.
In general, cooking techniques for fish were quite simple… salted herbs, a combination of onions, chives and green onions cut into 1/2 inch cubes and layered with coarse sea salt and pepper in a glass crock, and boiled until a brine formed. The fresh fish (caught daily) were then simmered in this seasoned water and then fried.
Except for a few dishes, frying was restricted to fish and baking was restricted to bread. Whole wheat or mixed grain bread was served at major meals, according to eighteenth century observers, and loaves were inevitably consumed with molasses and locally produced maple syrup.
Pâté à la Râpure
An Acadian specialty, “rappie pie” is still served (usually) on Sundays and festive occasions in some parts of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Rapée or rapure are French terms meaning “grated”. The dish consists of grated potaoes, layered with meat and broth and baked until golden brown.This dish is to the Axadians of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island, what “Poutine Râpée” is to the Acadians of southeastern New Brunswick… a favourite! In certain parts of New Brunswick, it is called “Pâté à la râpure, “Paté râpé” or “Chiard”. While the preparation of Râpure is similar in most areas, the ingredients often vary from one region to another, or even from one family to another. Some Acadians add pork, others add chicken or seafood, while still othersuse only grated or mashed potatoes, or sometimes day-old bread.
[ Recipe # 1 ]
1 five pound fowl, chopped
3 medium onions
1 medium carrot
1 celery stalk
2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 pound finely diced salt pork
15 medium potatoes (about 8 pounds)
Cook fowl, onions, carrot, celery and salt in enough water to cover ingredients. Bring to a boil and skim. Simmer until meat is tender (about 2 1/2 hours). Remove skin and bones and cut meat in pieces. Strain broth. Fry salt pork until crisp. Peel potatoes; grate very fine, or purée in electric blender. Working with about 1 cup of potato at a time, squeeze it in a clean dish towel to remove as much liquid as possible (save liquid). Empty potato into large bowl (at this stage potato feels like snow). Combine half of the saved potato liquid water, to an equal amount of chicken broth, bring to boil and gradually stir into potato to mix thoroughly (potato will swell). Spread a layer of potato mixture in bottom of greased roasting pan (15 X 20 inches) and cover with a layer of chicken. Repeat layers until dish is full, ending with potato. Sprinkle with salt porl. Bake at 400°F until top starts to brown (30 minutes). Turn oven control to 350°F and continue baking until brown and crusty (2 hours). 10 to 12 servings.
[ Recipe # 2 ]
2 pounds (1 kg.) of fatty pork
2 onions, chopped
12 large potatoes, grated very fine
4 large potatoes, cooked and mashed
1 tbsp. (15 ml.) salt
pepper, to taste
summer savory, to taste
coriander, to taste
1/4 pound (125 g.) pork fat
1/2 pound (259 g.) fried salt pork
Cut the pork into cubes and sauté them in a frting pan. Add the onions and sauté until golden brown. Set the meat and onions aside.
Grate the raw potatoes and extract the water from the potatoes by putting them in a cotton bag and sqeezing vigorously. (Note: The potatoes may first be rinsed in cold water, to remove their starchy pink colour).
Placed the mashed potatoes in a large bowl with the meat, onions, grated potatoes, eggs, salt, pepper, summer savory and coriander and combine them thoroughly.
Place the pork fat in a 8″ (20 cm.) X 15″ (35 cm.) casserole dish and pour the potatoes over the pork fat. Sprinkle with the pieces of fried salt pork.
Bake at 350 degrees F. (180 degrees C.), for at least two hours, or until the top is golden brown.
Variation: Substitute the pork in this recipe by chicken. Or, the two meats may be mixed together.
[ Recipe # 3 ]
3 large onions, chopped
12 potatoes, peeled
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 pound (250 mg.) salt pork fat, cubed
Cut the chicken into large pieces and put them into a pot with just enough water to completely cover the meat. Add the onions and simmer until the chicken is tender. Remove the chicken from the pot, but save the chicken broth.
Remove the meat from the bones and cut into small pieces.
Grate the potatoes. Extract all of the water from the potatoes by putting them in a cotton bag and squeezing vigorously.
Bring the chicken broth to a boil. Scald the potatoes in an amount of broth equal to two-thirds of the water extracted from the potatoes. Blend the broth with potatoes and season with salt and pepper.
In a heavy pot, sauté half of the cubed salt pork. Add half of the potato mixture, the chicken and then cover with the remaining potato mixture.
Cut the remaining salt pork into strips and place them on the râpure. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until the top is uniformly brown.
Variation: The chicken may be replaced by hare, mussels or clams.
[ Recipe # 1 ]
For many Acadians living in southwestern New Brunswick, Poutines Rapée, a potato dumpling with a mixture of seasoned pork in the centre, is considered a national dish. In other parts of Acadia, these delicacies are prepared without meat and are sometimes added to fricot (see recipe below). Although the greyish colour and gluey testure of the poutines make them appear somewhat unappetizing, their taste more than compensates for their unattractive appearance.
1/2 pound (250 g.) fatty salt pork
10 potatoes, finely grated
4 potatoes, cooked and mashed
salt and pepper, to taste
Soak the pork overnight in cold water to remove the salt, and cut into cubes.
Extract the water from the grated potatoes, by putting them in a cotton bag and squeezing vigorously.
Mix the mashed potatoes with the grated potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Roll the potatoe mixture into a ball resembling small snowballs. Make a hole in the centre of the potato ball and add 1 tbsp. (15 ml.) of the salt pork. Close the hole and roll the poutines in flour.
Gently drop the poutines, 2 or 3 at a time, into a large pot of boiling salted water, ensuring that the water is kept at a rolling boil. Simmer the poutines for 2 to 3 hours.
Eat the poutines hot with butter, salt and pepper, or as a desert with sugar and molasses.
Makes 6 poutines.
Variation: In Chéticamp, Acadians make a large Poutine à la râpure, which they call Cochon en sac (Pig in a Bag). To make this simple variation, add salt, baking powder and flour to the grated potatoes. Cook the Cochon by steaming it in a large cotton bag. Serve with sugar and molasses. [Note from Yvon: I personally saw a group of Acadians enjoying the poutines, with ketchup and/or mustard]! Poutines may also be cut into slices and fried with butter.
[ Recipe # 2 ]
Poutines Rapées are a mixture of raw grated potatoes, combined with cooked and mashed potatoes and then formed into a ball, stuffed with seasoned salt pork and then simmered in salted water. They are served with brown sugar or molasses (and I have seen them eaten with mustard).
1/2 pound of fatty, salted pork
4 potatoes, cooked, mashed and seasoned with salt and pepper
Soak the salted pork overnight to remove the excess salt. Cut into cubes. Grate the uncooked potatoes and extract the water from the grated potatoes by squeezing them in a cloth. Mix the grated dried potatoes with the mashed-seasoned potatoes. Add seasoning if necessary. Make a hole in the center of the potato ball with your thumb and add tablespoon of the cubed salted pork. Close the hole and roll the poutine in white flour and then gently lower them in a large pot filled with boiling salt water. Keep the water boiling and simmer the poutines for 2 to 3 hours. Serve hot with butter, salt and pepper, or as a dessert with sugar a molasses. Makes 6 poutines.
Potatoes had many uses in the kitchen of the early Acadian settlers. The residue squeezed from the grated pulp for dishes such as pâté à la râpure, became the starch for the family laundry. Potatoes were used to soathe headaches and to make yeast for bread; and small pieces made good corks for bottles. As a food, potatoes had no peer. During long winter evenings, slices were often cooked until brown over an open fire, as young folks today toast marshmallows. Grated raw potatoes, salted and cooked on the griddle, became potato pancakes.
The chicken fricot is an ancestor to our chicken and dumplings and can also be made with fish, rabbit, beef, pork, game or no meat at all. The original potato fricot was prepared by early Acadians when neither meat or fish was available and was given the tongue-in-cheek name’fricot à la belette’ (weasel fricot) and, according to folklore, if you ask an Acadian about the origin of the name, they will simply smile and say… “Parc-que la bedette a passé toute droute” (because the ‘weasel’ [meat] went right on by)!”
1/4 pound of diced salt pork (or, 3 tablespoons of butter or oil)
1 – 3 to 5 lbs. stewing hen (or chicken) cut into serving pieces
2 cups of diced onions
1/4 cup of white flour
2 quarts of boiling water
salt and pepper, to taste
5 cups diced potatoes
3 to 4 sliced carrots (optional)
Sauté the salt pork (or heat the butter or oil) in a large pot; then sauté the chicken pieces, until lightly browned. Remove the chicken and all but about 3 tablespoons of oil or fat. Sauté the diced onions until wilted and slightly golden. Do not burn the onions. Add the flour and let the mixture cook about 1 minute. Add the chicken and boiling water. Season to taste.
Simmer until chicken is tender. Add the diced potatoes and carrots and cook fricot for about 15 to 20 minutes longer. Serve hot or add the drop dumplings pate (or grand-pères); cover and steam the dumplings in the fricot for about 7 minutes longer.
Dumplings For Fricot
1 cup of white flower
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup cold water
Combine the flour, salt and baking powder. Add the water and mix lightly until blended. Drop by tablespoon size onto the simmering fricot and steam (tightly covered cover) for about 7 minutes.
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1 pound pickled pork, diced
1 pound smoked ham, diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced
4 cups beef or chicken stock or hot water
2 cups rice
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
1. In large saucepan with lid, melt butter with oil.
2. Add onions and pork and saute until onions are soft.
3. Add ham, garlic, thyme and parsley and saute 5 minutes.
4, Add sausage and cook until browned.
5, Stir in stock and bring to boil.
6. Add rice, bay leaf and cayenne.
7. Return to boil and cover.
8. Simmer over very low heat 30 to 45 minutes, checking after 30 minutes to see if all liquid has been absorbed and rice is tender. If necessary, add 1/4 to 1/2 cup more water if liquid boils away before rice is cooked.
Acadian Corn Soup; Soupe au Blé D’Inde
3 cups diced potatoes
1-1/2 cups corn kernels
3 cups salted water
1 large onion
2 tsp. butter
2 cups milk
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp. butter
Boil the diced potatoes in the salted water for 15 minutes. If fresh corn is used, remove the kernels from the cob and cook the corn with the potatoes. Sauté the onion in butter. Add milk and heat the mixture until it is warm. Add the boiled potatoes and corn and the cooking liquid. Season to taste. Let the mixture stand a few minutes to allow the flavors to enhance, before serving.
Just before serving add 1 tbsp. of butter.
Soupe Au Navet
(Turnip Soup also called Soupe Allemande)
2 cups turnips diced
1-cup carrots diced
7 cups of water
3 cups potatoes diced
2 onions, chopped
Salt and pepper
1/2-cup salt pork
1 tbsp. flour
Place the diced turnip and carrots in a large pot. Cover the vegetables with water and bring to a boil, simmer for about 15 minutes. Add the potatoes, chopped onion, salt and pepper. Simmer for 20 minutes Cut pork into small pieces and place in a skillet with a small amount of water. Bring to a boil. Pour off the water and sauté the pork fat until it is lightly browned. Let stand.
Sauté second onion until slightly browned. Add small amount of the vegetable broth to the sauté’ed onion mixture, making a smooth sauce. Add the sauté’ed pork and onion to the boiled vegetables and broth. Soupe au navet is best when served with hot rolls.
In the English speaking world, the word ‘soup’ means any liquid food made from stock. The French have several names or terms used to describe their different types of soups, depending on the preparation. These names range from bisques, bouillon, and consomé, to potages, purées and even… soup!
“Soupe de la Toussaint”
(All Saints Day Soup)
“Soupe De La Toussaint” was a meatless soup made with cabbage (often stolen from their neighbours garden, on Halloween), and is similar to Louisiana’s traditional vegetable soup, gumbo z’herbes, that is served on Good Friday.
2 quarts cold water
salt and pepper to taste
1 bay leaf
1 small head of cabbage, shredded
2 cups chopped leeks, or green onions
2 cups diced celery
1 cup diced carrots
Boil the mixture for about 10 minutes and serve hot.
Note: A beef shank, or soup meat, is an optional addition to the dish. If you use the shank, boil it for about 30 minutes before adding the vegetables.
1 lb. crawfish tails
1/4 cup celery, chopped
2 cup onions, chopped
2 tbsp. bell pepper, chopped
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp. red pepper
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 cloves garlic
6 tbsp butter
1. Saute vegetables until transparent. Add 1/8 cup of water and simmer for 15 minutes.
2. Add crawfish fat, cover and cook for 15 minutes on low.
3, Add crawfish tails, salt and peppers and cook for 15 minutes.
4. Add parsley and onion tops a few minutes before serving.
5. Serve over hot rice.
Soupe à la Baillarge
1 soup bone
14 cups cold water
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp. salted herbs
2 onions, chopped
1/2 cup of dried beans and/or peas
4 cups mixture of raw diced carrots, turnips, green beans, beans, peas,
grated cabbage, broad beans, fresh corn
5-6 whole potatoes
3-4 corn on the cob
2 cups carrots and turnips cut in large pieces
Soak barley for 30 minutes in cold water. Add dry beans, peas and barley to the broth and simmer for 1-1/2 hours. Add raw vegetables and simmer for an additional hour. Serve the soup (or broth as first course), then the meat and vegetables. Place soup bone and water salt pepper, onions and herbs in large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer on low heat for 1 hour.
Chowder # 1
Chowder is a thick, soup with cubed new potatoes enriched with butter, milk and cream, flavored with a touch of chervil to which is added, fish, lobster, scallops, shrimp, etc..
1-1/2 cups diced new potatoes
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup cooked lobster meat cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 cups milk
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 tsp. finely chopped parsley
1 tsp. finely chopped chervil
In a medium saucepan combine potatoes, onion and water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes or until the potatoes are softened, but not cooked through. Add the cubed lobster, salt and pepper to taste and simmer until the potatoes are tender. Add the milk, cream and butter and heat just to a boil. Ladle into warm tureen or bowls and sprinkle with
chopped parsley. Serve with whole-wheat crackers or soda bread. Makes 4 generous servings.
Chowder # 2
In pot # 1
6 cups cold water
1 cup chopped celery with stalks and leaves
3/4 cup chopped onion
1-1/2 tsp. salt
6 peppercorns, crushed
1 bay leaf
4 parsley stalks
1/2 tsp. thyme
4 oz raw shrimp in their shells
1-1/2 lbs. fresh cod, halibut or haddock
2 tbsp. butter, softened
2 tbsp. flour
Pot # 2 – Potatoes and vegetables
2 cups chopped potatoes 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 cup chopped onion
2 cups boiling water
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup freshly shelled or frozen peas
1-cup sour cream
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh coriander or parsley.
To make a poaching liquid in pot # 1, combine the cold water, celery onion salt, peppercorns, bay leaf parsley and thyme in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes. Add shrimp and cook until the shrimp are opaque and pink. Remove the shrimp. Peel and de-vein the shrimp and set aside. Add the fish in one piece to the poaching liquid and cook
about 5 minutes. The fish should flake. Remove fish with a slotted spoon and break into serving size chunks and set aside with the shrimp. Strain the stock and press the vegetables against the strained to remove all liquid. Return the stock to the saucepan.
Blend the flour and butter together and add to the stock, one spoon full at a time, blending the mixture with a whisk. Reheat and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Reserve over low heat, whisking periodically. Place the 2 cups of water, salt into pot #2 and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook until the potatoes are tender. Add the celery and peas and cook for 5 minutes. Transfer the
contents of this pan to the thickened fish stock. Add the reserved fish and shrimp and heat through. Remove the chowder from the heat and stir in the sour cream. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Serve immediately in warmed shallow soup bowl, making sure there are enough shrimp and fish pieces in each bowl. Garnish with coriander. Makes 6 servings.
You can prepare both of the above Chowders and substitute chopped shrimp, scallops, cod, salmon or any firm white ocean fish, lump crabmeat or Louisiana crawfish.
Cajun Barbecue Shrimp
1 cup (2 sticks) margarine
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup chicken broth (canned is fine)
4 teaspoons finely minced garlic
5 whole bay leaves, torn into pieces
4 teaspoons dried rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoons dried sweet basil
1 teaspoon Greek oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon (or more) cayenne pepper
4 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 pounds whole fresh shrimp in the shell (with heads if possible)
1. In a heavy saute pan or saucepan melt the margarine, then add the oil and mix well. Add all the other ingredients except the shrimp and broth, and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sauce begins to boil.
2. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 7 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, then remove the pan from the heat and let it stand, uncovered, at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
3. Add the shrimp to the sauce, mix thoroughly, and put the pan back on the burner. Cook over medium heat for 6 to 8 minutes, or just until the shrimp turn pink.
4. Add the broth, shaking the pan back and forth to mix. Preferably, place the pan into a preheated 450 degree F oven and bake for 10 minutes. Or simmer loosely covered on the stovetop for about 5 or 10 minutes.
5. Serve equal portions of shrimp with about 1/2 cup of the sauce ladled over each one. You will need bibs and lots of bread to sop up the sauce. Also, fingers are a necessary eating utensil.
(Roast chicken with potato stuffing)
Poultry was scarce in Acadia, so rabbit, which were plentiful, were sometimes roasted and stuffed with a bread stuffing or potato stuffing.
1 baking hen (or rabbit)
3 slices of dry stale bread
3 tbsp. butter
Salt and pepper
Boil the potatoes and mash. Sauté onion in the butter then add 3 slices of dry stale bread to mixture. Sauté the mixture, and then add potatoes, summer savory, salt and pepper. Moisten the stuffing if necessary. Stuff into chicken or rabbit and roast with potato stuffing at 375 degrees for 2 hours.
Acadian Stewed Chicken
1 chicken, cut up into serving size pieces
1 large onion, chopped
12 cups of water
Salt and pepper to taste
1-tablespoon summer savory
5 cups diced potatoes
In a large pot (French or Dutch oven) add oil and brown the chicken. Remove the chicken pieces and brown the onion and flour in the remaining oil for 1 to 2 minutes. Add water, salt, pepper and savory. Cook until the chicken is tender (1 to 1-1/2 hours, depending on the size of the chicken). Add the potatoes and cook for 20 minutes longer. Serve immediately. Although this recipe is for
a chicken stew, it could easily be converted to a “fricot” by simply adding dumplings called “poutines” or “grands-pères”, mentioned above.
Mardi Gras King Cake
1 package yeast
1/4 cup warm water
6 teaspoons milk, scalded and cooled
4 cups flour (to 5 cups)
1/2 pound butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons melted butter
Small plastic doll (or bean)
Light corn syrup for topping
Granulated sugar for topping – green, yellow, purple
1. Dissolve yeast in warm water.
2. Add milk and about 1/2 cup of flour.
3. In a large bowl, blend butter, sugar, salt and eggs.
4. Add yeast dough and mix thoroughly.
5. Gradually, add 2 1/2 cups flour to make a medium dough.
6. Place in a greased bowl and brush with melted butter.
7. Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise until double in volume, about 3 hours.
8. Use 1 cup or more flour to knead dough and roll into a 4 to 5 foot long rope.
9. Form into a oval on a 14 x 17-inch greased cookie sheet, connecting ends of the rope with a few drops of water.
10. Press the doll (or bean) into the dough from underneath.
11. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until double in volume, about 1 hour.
12. Bake at 325 degrees F for 35 to 45 minutes or until lightly browned.
13. Brush top of cake with corn syrup and sprinkle with alternating bands of colored sugar.
King Cakes are traditionally made and eaten after New Years up until Ash Wednesday. A small baby figure is placed in each cake. The person who gets the baby has to provide the next King Cake.
JUDY’s Pea Soup
1 lbs. split yellow soup peas
1 cup diced cooked ham
1 medium chopped onion
1/4 lb. salted lard (or large ham bone)
2- tablespoons of white rice
1/4 cup diced carrots
salt & pepper (to taste)
Soak peas in water, over night. The next day, drain the peas and then boil them in fresh clean water. Use a 4- 4 1/2 quart pot. Add onion and ham bone. Cook at “low heat” for two hours. Add diced carrots, rice, ham and cook for a further ten to fifteen minutes.
St. John Valley ‘Ploye’ (Plogue) Recipe
1 cup of Buckwheat Flour
1 cup of ‘All Purpose’ Flour
2 teaspoons of Baking Powder
1 teaspoon of Salt
Mix all dry ingredients in a large bowl, with 1 1/2 cup of cold water, until the consistency of cake batter. Add 1/2 cup of hot (not boiling) water and mix well to make a light batter. Spoon enough batter onto a very hot griddle, to make a 4 to 8 inch pancake. Serve withcreton… that’s _another_ story, butter, or molasses! My own personal favourite, is with maple syrup!
Ployes de Bockouite – Galettes de Sarrasin – Plogues au Sarrasin
JUDY’s “Cretons” Recipe
- 4 pounds of fresh ground pork meat (not frozen)
- 1 cup of homogenized milk
- 1 large cooking onion
- 1 small garlic clove
- 1 pinch of chive (ciboulette)
- 1 pinch of mixed spices
- 1 pinch of fine herbs
- 2 pinch of parsley (persil)
- 1 pinch of celery salt
- 1 pinch of ground cloves (giroffe)
- pepper and salt (to taste)
1) Place all above-noted ingredients in a deep pot.
2) After meat starts to cook, allow to simmer on medium-low heat for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Stir occasionally.
3) Remove from stove and allow to cool for at least five minutes.
4) Mix thoroughly using a hand mixer, for at least one minute.
5) Place in small containers and refrigerate.
7) Once cooled in refrigerator, the “cretons” may be frozen for future use. Do not freeze longer than a couple of month. But… there’s nothing like “fresh cretons”… spread on ployes, of course!
9) Enjoy some more!
Bayou Bread Pudding, with Hot Rum Sauce
1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple
8 ounces raisins
1 cup dark rum
30 ounces stale French bread
1 quart milk
6 ounces melted butter
3 large eggs
6 ounces evaporated milk
3 tablespoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
Hot Rum Sauce:
2 cups granulated sugar
8 ounces butter
2 large eggs
4 ounces dark rum
1. Place pineapple and raisins in a bowl. Add rum and set aside to marinate for 48 hours. Break up the bread and soak in the milk, then strain out excess liquid in a sieve and place the mushy bread in a mixing bowl. Drain the rum from the fruit and reserve liquid for making sauce. Add the fruit to the bread, together with melted butter.
2. In a separate bowl beat the eggs with the evaporated milk, vanilla and both sugars and add to the bread and fruit. Mix with a spoon until thoroughly blended. To cook: transfer the mixture to a well-greased 12 x 9-inch baking pan and bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 30 minutes, then remove pan and stir well. Spread the pudding evenly and replace in the oven to bake for a further 40 to 45 minutes. Serve immediately with Hot Rum Sauce.
3. Combine sugar and butter in a double boiler. Beat eggs, add to the pan and whisk rapidly to produce a thick consistency. Remove pan from heat and allow to cool, then stir in rum and reserved marinade. Reheat before pouring over the pudding prior to serving.
- 5 lbs. ground pork
- 3 medium onions, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cup of water
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. allspice
- 1/8 tsp. ground cloves (clou giroffe)
- 1/4 tsp pepper
Cook all ingredients (except pie crust), stirring constantly until meat is light brown in appearance, but still moist (about 4-5 minutes).
Prepare favourite pie crust.
Pour mixture into pastry-lined pie plate, cover with top crust that has slits in it. Seal and press dough firmly around edges (with a fork), Bake at 400 degrees in oven for about 35-40 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
Let stand for 35-40 minutes before cutting.
Note: Add ketchup to taste, when eating.
TOURTIERE (Canadian Pork Pie)
- 1 lb. ground pork
- 1/2 lb. ground beef (or veal)
- 1 med. onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 c. water
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
- 1/4 tsp. ground sage
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
Cook all ingredients together (except pie crust) stirring constantly until meat is light brown in appearance, but still moist, about 4-5 minutes.
Prepare favourite pie crust.
Pour mixture into pastry lined pie plate, cover with with top crust that has slits in it. Seal and press firmly around edges with a fork. Bake at 400 degree in oven for about 35 to 40 minutes, until crust is golden brown. Let stand for 35 to 40 minutes before cutting.
FRENCH MEAT PIE (Tourtière)
- 2 lbs. ground pork
- 1 med. onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 potato, pealed and quartered
- 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/8 to 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 to 1 1/2 c. chicken stock
Prepare enough pastry for a double-crust pie and one egg yolk beaten with 1 tbsp. water (for glazing).
Combine all ingredients (except pastry and egg yolk). Blend thoroughly. Simmer, uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Skim any excess fat. Cook until mixture is tender and moist, but not wet. Let the meat mixture cool. Remove potato and mash with a fork. Return to meat mixture and mix well. Check seasoning.
Roll dough and line a deep 9 inch pie pan with 2/3 of the pastry. Add the filling. Brush edges of crust with egg glaze. Roll out top crust and arrange on top. Seal, make vent holes to allow steam to escape and brush with egg glaze. Bake the tourtière in a preheated 375 degree oven for 40-50 minutes or until crust is browned.
Canadian Christmas Tourtière
- 2 lg. potatoes, peeled
- 1 lb. ground pork
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1/4 tsp. ginger
- 1 recipe pastry
- 1/2 c. finely chopped onion
- 1/2 c. beef broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/8 tsp. cloves
Cut up potatoes and cook in boiling water foir 20 minutes. Drain, mash.
Brown the pork and drain-off excess fat. Stir-in the rest of the ingredients, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring often. Discard bay leaf. Stir in potatoes. Allow mixture to cool.
Roll half the pastry into 12 inch circle. Line a 9 inch pie plate. Trim dough even woth rim. Fill with meat mixture. Roll-out remaining dough. Place on top of filing and make slits for steam to escape. Trim to 1/2 inch beyond rim. Seal; flute. Cut-out recorative shapes from dough scraps. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Makes 6 servings.
1 lb. ground pork
1/2 lb. ground veal
6 slices of bacon, cut-up
1/2 c. onion, chopped
1/2 c. celery, chopped
clove garlic, minced
2 tsp. dried age, crushed
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 1/4 c. water
Prepare pastry (Pillsbury) for double crust pie.
In Dutch oven, brown ground pork, veal, bacon pieces. Drain-off excess fat. Stir-in chopped onion, celery, garlic, sage, salt and pepper. Stir in 1 cup of water. Bring meat-vegetable mixture to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until onion is tender, stirring frequently.
Combine cornstarch and 1/4 cup water. Add to hot meat-vegetable mixture, cooking and stirring until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove pan from heat; cool slightly. After mixture cools, line 10-inch pie pan with pie crust. Pour mixture into crust. Top with top crust; cut slits in top crust, Seal and flute crust edge.
Bake pie in 400 degree oven for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving. Note: Tourtières are usually enjoyed after the Midnight Mass of Christmas.
Louisiana Style Lil Smokies
5 slices bacon, diced
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup pineapple juice
3/4 cup catsup
3 tablespoons Tabasco brand green pepper sauce
1 1/2 packages Lil Smokies brand sausage, chopped
1. Fry bacon over medium heat until crisp and brown.
2. Add green bell pepper and onion. Cook until tender.
3. Stir in catsup, juice and green pepper sauce. Mix well.
4. Add smoked sausage to sauce and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
5. Serve as is or over rice.
• 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
• 2 lbs boneless chicken
• 2 c peeled & cubed potatoes
• 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
• 2 c chicken broth
• 2 lbs pork tenderloin
• 1/4 lb sliced ham
• 1 tsp salt
• 4 onions, sliced
• 2 lbs flank steak
• Step #1 Cut chicken, & pork into 1 inch cubes, beef, & place this in a large bowl.
• Step #2 Stir in onions.
• Step #3 Cover, & put in the fridge overnight.
• Step #4 Arrange salt pork evenly in the bottom of a 3 quart casserole dish with a cover.
• Step #5 Layer with 1/3 of the meat mixture & 1/3 of the potatoes; season this with salt & pepper.
• Step #6 Roll out half of the pastry a little bit thicker than for a normal pie & arrange on the potato layer, cutting a small hole in the middle.
• Step #7 Repeat with 2 more layers of meat & potatoes seasoned with salt & pepper.
• Step #8 Cover with remaining pastry, & cut a small hole in the middle of that layer too.
• Step #9 Slowly add enough chicken stock through the hole until liquid appears.
• Step #10 Cover dish.
• Step #11 Bake at 400F degrees F (205 degrees C) for 45 mins, or until liquid simmers.
• Step #12 Reduce temperature to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C).
• Step #13 Bake for 5 to 6 hrs more, or until top crust is a rich golden brown.
• Step #14 Enjoy the Cipate Pie recipe.
I am very grateful to Dr. Don J. Landry who published “The Cuisine of Acadia” and gave me permission to reproduce some of its wonderful Acadian recipes on this page.