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Traditional Quebec recipes

Hello all!

I just made a post in the Quebec board and I thought it might interest you too.

I made a list of quebec recipes and translated them for others to try.

Keep in mind however:
*This list is not meant to be exhaustive
*Its a list of classics, so there will be a million different versions
*When faced between a more fancy version and a version that felt more authentic, I chose authenticity
*"Authentic" is my own feeling based on my own memory. Your distance will vary.
*When available, I included a martin picard variation. if you enjoy, you should look for his cookbooks
*Yep, I used my tumblr account... its faster for me to update. I included links to all recipes in posts however.
*You might have the same exact recipe at home, or a variation. It happens! I preferred not to take any chance (maybe there could be interesting differences?). Those are classics from my childhood but maybe they are classic from the childhood of someone born in New England too.

Traditional Quebec Pea Soup

Martin Picard foie gras pea soup

Martin Picard Quebec Cretons

Tourtière (one variation amongst thousands

Quebec Sheperd's pie

Martin Picard Shepherd's pie

Meatball stew

Martin Picard Meatball stew

Pork Trotters Stew

Pineapple and maple syrup ham

Martin Picard baked beans

Martin Picard homemade ketchup


Chicken Pot Pie


Unemployed pudding

Martin Picard unemployed pudding

Grandfathers in syrup

Rice pudding

Bread pudding

Nun farts

Sucre à la crème

Sugar pie

Farlouche Pie

Potato candy

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  1. Awesome! I've really wanted to try some of Martin Picard's food. Wish I could get out to that sugar shack.

    1 Reply
    1. re: jammy

      Thanks! Most of the Martin Picard recipes I translated were available online in french from his sugar shack tv show "Martin à la cabane". The only recipe I hunted from his cookbook was his "pouding chomeur" (unemployed pudding) because its such a classic.

      1. re: Antilope

        not a criticism, because I love old cookbooks, but the recipes are more Anglo than Quebecois, I think?

        I could be wrong...I only looked up to the fish section.

        1. re: pinehurst

          We do have Anglos in the province (they're free-range too).

          1. re: wattacetti

            Oh I know...they've been free range for a while now! :-)
            Just saying that when you think Quebec food, cod doesn't necessarily come to mind.

            1. re: pinehurst

              Don't say that if you're anywhere in the Gaspésie - they'll stone you.

              1. re: wattacetti

                If they throw me moules along with the cod (and rocks) from Percé, I'll be happy!

        2. re: Antilope

          I'm sorry I'm having problem logging in. The thought is appreciated though!

          1. re: CaptCrunch

            I think the Hathitrust.org is blocking users from outside the U.S. It's an archive of digitized books (digitized by Google) from many U.S. university libraries. Must be a copyright thing.

        3. no recipe for poutine or cheese curds!

          3 Replies
          1. re: jpr54_1


            Poutine is at the same time simple and complicated. You need good fries (double fried!), gravy and cheese curds.

            Good fries are pretty much available everywhere.

            Everyone will have their favorite gravy (usually we buy it pre-made here). Here's a basic gravy recipe that might do it for you (although I'd add a bit more spices like paprika and dried mustard and maybe a splash of worcestershire sauce and season it with salt and freshly ground pepper):

            Cheese curds are complicated. You cannot do without and its really hard to make in house (I've never met anyone who did). There is no substitute and a poutine without cheese curds is just a "frite sauce". Some people will suggest replacing the gravy with spaghetti sauce and cheese curds with grated cheese but they are anarchist who would like nothing better than to see the world burn.

            I guess this looks like a recipe you can try at home but who has calcium chloride, thermophilic culture c-201 and rennet just lying around?

            1. re: jpr54_1

              I live in Hallandale Beach, Florida. Here and in Hollywood I have met many Quebecois snowbirds.

              1. re: jpr54_1

                Yep, we sure love florida! It used to be the big destination in the 80's and it still is for many!

            2. Thank you for posting these. My husband is French Canadian and food certainly was a celebration of life and family. I have been wanting to make a good pea soup.

              4 Replies
              1. re: Ruthie789

                Hopefully the pea soup works for you!

                1. re: CaptCrunch

                  My MIL used to make two types, a traditional one and one with a white bean, it was very good,

                  1. re: Ruthie789

                    If you can find the st-arnaud yellow peas they are apparently the best for the traditional one:


                    1. re: CaptCrunch

                      I will keep a lookout for them. IGA usually carries different brands although so many grocers carry mostly CLIC brand lentils and beans of late.

              2. Thank you for the memories! I thought "Nuns Farts" were a family joke. My Gran would make them with scraps left from pies. My uncle always drove her crazy calling them that!

                2 Replies
                1. re: maplesugar

                  Nope! Its really called that!

                  You have to understand that Quebec prior to 1960 was extremely catholic. Most of our swearwords are actually church equipment (tabernacle, host, chalice, ect) and we occasionally have reminders in everyday lives of that past.

                  1. re: CaptCrunch

                    Lol I grew up in Eastern Ontario and went to school in Montreal/L'Estrie. My family is primarily anglo, except for my now departed very catholic french canadian Grandmother. Some of the first french words I learned were in her kitchen - and a few were the ones you described.

                    I wish I spent a little more time in that kitchen - she made the best pies.

                2. Looks like you left out Montreal smoke meat.

                  Lemme give you a hand: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/794033.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: biggreenmatt


                    I wanted to focus on more traditional french canadian recipes, which is what I am more comfortable with since I'm french canadian myself (i.e.: I don't have a meat smoking tradition in my family... unfortunately!).

                    Smoke meat is typically montreal based and is more traditionally anchored in the culture of our wonderful east european jewish diaspora of yesteryears. Same thing with bagels or our portuguese chicken, our "shish taouk (lebanese style shawarma), Even poutine is pretty modern!

                  2. My French-Canadian relatives make a dish called pot-hellion out of wild game. It's basically a braise of moose, venison or what have you with some salt pork, onion, beans/peas/lentils and molasses/maple syrup.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: shoes

                      Hello Shoes!

                      I'm not aware of this dish. Its not in my reference books either.

                      It might have been a dish that got lost in time, a variation on another recipe or a dish from another repertoire I'm not knowledgeable about (i.e.: Acadians are french canadians too and have their own classic repertoire that haven't fully bled in Quebecois traditions)

                      1. re: CaptCrunch

                        What is also interesting about French Canadian cooking is the regional dishes and plates that vary in preparation across this big province. My MIL family was from the Granby area and she certainly had some dishes that I have never seen. One of them a concoction with iceberg lettuce, green peas, and tomatoes. She claimed it was a recipe that her Mom used to make.(Not my most favorite recipe of hers) As mentioned she made a white bean soup and many types of ragouts.
                        As well I find that most French Canadians practice conviviality and our exceptional hosts and cooks