Virton butchers Leroux-Subitte are credited with the invention of this aromatic pork pie toward the end of the 1800s, a tradition that has continued with the butchers of the region.
The pastry, which is often sweetened, is prepared with a yeast dough. Generally the pastry is the domain of bakers and the filling and marinade the speciality of butchers, although some butchers prepare their own pastry.
Recipes for home-made pies are a closely-guarded secret and coveted by family and friends.
The filling is traditionally associated with loin meat with some rib and belly meat. It is cut into pieces no larger than two centimetre cubes, then marinated for at least 48 hours.
The marinade will include red or white wine and vinegar flavoured with carrots, garlic, onions or shallots and various herbs and spices from bay, black pepper, clove, juniper, parsley, sage and thyme plus salt.
Pâté Gaumais is eaten hot, usually an hour after baking, or cold and can be re-heated.
It is celebrated every December 26 in Virton with the King of Pâté Gaumais competition for the highest amount consumed in one sitting.
- 1 kg pork loin and rib meat, cut into 2 cm pieces
- 500 g shallots, sliced thin
- 125 g dry white wine / red wine
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 5 tsp wine vinegar
- 15 g black pepper
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 tbsp thyme
- 10 g salt
- 10 juniper berries
- 5 sprigs parsley, chopped small
- 1 sprig sage
- 5 rosemary spears, chopped small
- 3 bay leaves
Marinate meat for 48 hours over two nights. Turn the meat from time to time.
- 500 g white wheat flour, t45
- 150 g butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 eggs + 1 egg yolk
- 100 ml milk, warmed to 38ºC
- 50 g yeast
- 15 g lard
- 15 g sugar (optional)
- 5 g salt
Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk. Add yeast mixture and eggs to the flour to make a loose dough. Work the butter into the dough in stages, finish with the lard, knead into a smooth dough, about 20 minutes. Leave to rest for two hours.
Remove bay leaves, juniper berries, sage and thyme from the marinade. Drain the liquid, leave to rest for 30 minutes, use paper towels to absorb any moisture on the meat.
Divide the dough into four pieces, cover and set aside. Take one piece and divide into two, shape into balls, one larger than the other, then into rounds.
Place a quarter of the meat mixture on the larger round, place the small round on top.
Fold the edge of the larger round into the edge of the smaller round in the crimp style.
Put the pie on a greased tray, make a small hole in the centre of the surface.
Repeat with remaining dough and meat mixture. Preheat oven to 180ºC.
Brush the egg yolk over the surface of each pie.
Bake for 60 minutes until the pies are golden brown on top.
Pâté Gaumais is produced and sold at these outlets.
BAILLOT Brothers Rue Dr. Hustin, 55 at 6760 Ethe 063/577 246
BIT Xavier Grand Rue, 43 to 6760 Virton 063/577 224
BLAISE Cured meats Place Albert 1er, 4 at 6820 Florenville 061/311 951
DE MATOS Adolfo - EUROVIANDE Place G. Lorand, 3 at 6760 Virton 063/578 870
DROPSY Roland Ruelle Giffe, 2 at 6747 Saint-Léger 063/457 300
FELSCH Didier Rue du Vieux Sart, 2 at 6769 Meix-devant-Virton 063/577 421
HOLTZHEIMER Jean Industry Street, 2 at 6792 Halanzy 063/678 579
LEFEBVRE Yvon Rue René Nicolas, 3 at 6750 Musson 063/675 747
MARECHAL Adelin Grand Rue, 88 to 6769 Gérouville 063/577 538
PEIGNOIS Claude - The heart of the Gaume Rue Dr. Hustin, 51 at 6760 Ethe 063/581 804
ROMAIN Jean-Claude Station Street, 7 at 6820 Florenville 061/311 112
THIERY Frédéric Rue du Moulin, 5 to 6750 Mussy-La-Ville 063/677 738
THOMAS Andre Rue de Neufchâteau, 2 at 6720 Habay-La-Neuve 063/422 139
TOCK Jules Grand Rue, 218 to 6740 Sainte-Marie 063/455 396