Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Space History, Cooking Tourtières.

We have just watched A Year in Space about Scott Kelly's stay on the International Space Station. A very interesting programme. I cannot imagine what it would be like to spend a year there. It is not, as I had always thought, one bit like the Enterprise. There is no artificial gravity and there is very little space. It is a series of long tubes all of which are stuffed with supplies and equipment. We watched the programme recorded by the Canadian astronaut, Chris Hadfield, so I knew what to expect when watching tonight. I have often thought I would like to go into space, but I cannot imagine spending all that time away from earth, friends and family living in such an uncomfortable environment. I wouldn't have a problem with the space ships in the Enterprise movies. They never get to sit down or lie flat on a bed. They are floating all the time in 0 gee. They are working almost constantly, either carrying out experiments or possibly effecting repairs in the station. Of course on this mission, two of the supply ships didn't arrive so they were getting very low on supplies. Eventually a Japanese ship got there. Not sure I would like to be a wife either knowing my husband was floating round in space. Or  a mother I guess. There is now a programme about Neil Armstrong.

I told you I had made the filling for my tourtières yesterday. I had only enough pastry to make two pies and it snowed pretty hard last night meaning that Matt did not do his usual early morning stint of going to the grocery store at 7 a.m., the roads being too bad. However, by 10:30 the roads weren't too bad so we both went and amongst other things, I had now got the rest of my pie shells. Then later I realised that I didn't have big enough cookie sheets. I had not long bought new ones. In the end I made the pies and had to cook only 2 at a time. We cut into one for supper, it was very good if I do say so myself. It was a lot easier to do it this way, making the filling one day and then making the pies the next day. Much less tiring. So, as promised, here is the recipe again.

Tourtière

As a change, you can use frozen puff pastry for your pies.

Filling
2 Tbs olive oil
1 lb ground pork
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground veal
2 cups finely chopped onion
¾ cup finely chopped carrot
1¼ cup chopped fennel
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried thyme
1½ tsp dry mustard
1½ tsp allspice
1 1/4 cup beef stock (or less) this time I used a lot less and the pies were better.
1 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbs rolled oats
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley per pie
1 Tbs dried breadcrumbs or ½ Tbs semolina per pie
Egg wash
1 egg beaten
1 Tbs whipping cream
4 boxes of frozen pastry - defrosted (2 shells in each) I use 4 deep dish and four regular for the top of the pies.

1. Heat oil in a heavy pot over high heat. Add ground meat and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the pinkness disappears. Drain off fat.

2. Stir in the onion, carrots, fennel, bay leaf, dried thyme, dry mustard, all-spice, cinnamon, rolled oats and salt and pepper. Add enough stock to just cover the top of the meat. Lower the heat to low, cover and cook slowly for about 45 minutes, or until the onions disappear. Check and stir after 30 minutes. Re-season if needed. Cool, remove and discard bay leaf and stir in parsley.

3. Preheat oven to 450°F/230°C.

4. Take out four pastry shells to use as bottoms and sprinkle with breadcrumbs or semolina to absorb any fat. Pile meat mixture onto each pastry crust, leaving a 1 inch border. Brush edge of pastry with water. Top with remaining crusts and press edges together to seal, crimping decoratively if desired.

5. Combine beaten egg with cream and brush over pastry. Cut steam vents into the top crusts.

6. Bake for 15 minutes in lower half of the oven. Reduce heat to 400°F/200°C and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the crusts are golden. Cooking four pies it is necessary to rotate their positions in the oven.

Servings: 6

Source: Food and Drink Holiday 2006

Have a great day

18 comments:

  1. Oh this sounds yummy! I am following him on FB and hope to see the show soon. What an amazing accomplishment...

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    1. It is Lisa.

      Didn't know he was on FB. Stands to reason I guess. It was quite something. Wonder how long before he can walk.

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  2. It was pretty nasty last night but by next week, we will have spring like weather. There is no way I have any desire to go to space unless it is on the Enterprise. How do these guys sleep up there?

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    1. The roads cleared very quickly here Birgit. Well saw Kelly get into a sleeping bag but he was vertical only of course floating. Up/down is whichever way you want it.

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  3. I don't like to fly; I can't imagine flying all the way up into space. I like my legs firmly planted on our gravity earth :)

    betty

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    1. Always enjoyed flying Betty. We can't all be the same I guess.

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  4. Hi Jo - I saw the Hadfield programme of his space flight .. fascinating - but I'm very happy down here! That pie looks delicious .. and so glad it was successful ... cheers Hilary

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    1. It is interesting to watch these space programmes Hilary. Hope you get to see this latest one. Pie was good.

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  5. I never actually thought about how they cope up there. I mean except for on Big Bang Theory when Howard went there and was floating around. It didn't occur to me that they couldn't sit or lay down. How do they sleep? And they have to wear diapers or something too. Never ever thought of this stuff.

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    1. One doesn't JoJo. Never seen The Big Bang Theory. They sleep floating. Never heard about the diapers.

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  6. Space is scary to me. Too much nothingness. I think astronauts are extremely brave!

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    1. I agree about the bravery Pinky as it is still so much trial and error. Anything can go wrong. However, I would like to be around in a few hundred years and see if space travel had improved any. I mean Captain Kirk has got to be captain of something!!

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  7. I have enormous admiration for the folk who go to the work in the space station. Just not getting on one another's nerves would be a challenge. I'd prefer the Enterprise version, too, I think.

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    1. I thought about that too, especially living together for a whole year. They can get away from one another a bit as part of the station is American and part Russian. Kelly went up on a Russian space ship and stayed with Russians on boad claiming one of them as a close friend but I never heard either of them speak the other's language so I wondered who spoke what. I guess you and I won't be going up then.

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  8. Hey Jo - I often prep ahead when I can. Like when I know I'm going to bake with rolled oats, I'll toast them the night before, cool them and then make what I need into flour. And I'll also put all my ingredients on my work bench at night so that come morning, I'm ready to roll.

    So I'm totally with you on prepping, when and where possible. Glad the pies came out well. Super groovy.

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    1. PS: I think I'd be too scared to go into space.

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    2. It's a good idea Ivy, especially when you cook as much as you do. I don't do a lot of prepping any more and end up in a rush when I am cooking. Just as well the astronauts aren't scared.

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