Cretons are a pork spread that is a staple in Quebec and not much heard about in the rest of Canada. I’ve heard it called “gorton” or “corton” among French- New Englanders. It is close to French rillettes in recipe. But much closer to pate in spirit.
Cretons are served on bread or toast most often as a part of breakfast. But it’s also popular as a snack in rural Quebec.
- Yields: 4 – 5 portions
- Total: 1.25 hours
- Active: 15 minutes
- 1 kg (2 1/4 lb.) mild fatty bacon, cut into cubes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 kg (2 1/4 lb.) lean Pork, cubed
- 1 tsp. poultry seasoning
- 1 onion diced
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- 250 ml (1 cup) boiling water
- Phase 1 1) Remove the membrane from the fat and cut it into small pieces. 2) Melt it over medium heat, being careful to stir so that it does not stick. It is cooked once the fat no longer gives off any water and the remaining bits of meat are golden brown. 3) Pour through a fine strainer and chop the remaining bits of meat with a knife. Keep the fat for frying potatoes or cubes of meat.
- Phase 2
1) Put the pork through a meat grinder. Cook it with the chopped onion and water. Stir constantly at the beginning. 2) After 30 minutes, add the remaining bits of meat from the rendered fat, the salt, pepper and spices. Let simmer for 15 to 20 minutes over low heat. 3) Pack the meat into moulds. Add a little of the rendered fat as desired. 4) Let cool before serving.