Canadian DYK: Québec has its own version of rillettes called cretons

A Canadian version of rillettes, if you will

If you don't have much experience with French-Canadian cuisine, it is unlikely you have tried, or have even heard of cretons. Cretons are a forcemeat style of spread that is similar to rillettes, typically consisting of ground pork, milk, onion, garlic, bread crumbs and spices such as allspice and cloves.

Originally, cretons were made from leaf fat derived from the abdominal cavity of a pig carcass. It could be pulled off the pigs ribs once slaughtered, then salted and thrown in the oven, then finally it would be ground for use in cretons.

According to Marius Barbeau, a Canadian ethnographer and folklorist, this dish has its origins in monasteries of the lower St. Lawrence River valley and the method was likely adapted from techniques observed from Indigenous people in the area.

No matter when it's eaten--early morning breakfast, a quick lunch spread on a piece of toast or smeared onto some melba toasts at a picnic--this can be just as pleasing (to carnivores, anyway) as a simple meal or as an hors d' oeuvre.