|Alternative names||Gorton, corton, cretonnade|
|Place of origin||Canada|
|Region or state||Quebec|
|Main ingredients||Pork, onions, spices|
In Quebec cuisine, cretons (sometimes gorton or corton, especially among New Englanders of French-Canadian origin) is a pork spread containing onions and spices. Due to its fatty texture and taste, it resembles French rillettes. Cretons are usually served on toast as part of a traditional Quebec breakfast. Not to be confused with "fromage de tête" (tête fromagée in Quebec) or head cheese.
Recipes vary, but traditional preparation involves covering one to three pounds of ground pork butt in milk or water in a large pot, then seasoning with onions and a mix of spices. The blend of spices varies from recipe to recipe, but nearly all include ground cloves. Other spices often used include cinnamon, allspice, ginger, nutmeg and bay leaf. Some recipes include minced garlic.
- The mixture is simmered gently over low heat, and stirred often to prevent scorching until all the liquid is cooked off and the mixture is thick. It is then allowed to cool, then stirred again to incorporate all the rendered fat, and transferred to a large clean container or individual containers, covered tightly and refrigerated for several hours or overnight until firm. Pig marrow is also often added in order to form a gelatin that allows it to congeal.
More specifically, cretons is pork-based; otherwise, it is a cretonnade, especially if it is is veal- or poultry-based. Although the distinction is often not made, even in French, with either type being cretons.
- "Les cretons". L'épicerie (série télévisée) (in French). 2004.
[...] des produits à base de veau ou de volaille, dans ces cas-là on parle de cretonnade. Le terme cretons est réservé au porc.
- Cretons described by Marius Barbeau in A glimpse of Canadian Culture online exhibition at the Canadian Museum of Civilization
- HACCP Generic Model: Meat Spread (Cretons) Introduction at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency
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