Newfoundland Toutons

Hope everyone had a great Easter! My weekend was filled with baking, a concert, watching P brew and shooting arrows. Yup, that’s right, I went with some friends to an archery, and as it turns out, if the zombies come I’m soooo going to get eaten. Here’s hoping all that cooking has led to some killer knife skills. Although, at least by the end I was starting to aim a little better…not much…but a little.

 

As I mentioned in my last bread post, I want to start posting more traditional Newfoundland recipes from time to time. Well, when it comes to Newfie cuisine, there’s nothing much more traditional then the touton. If you’ve ever taken a trip to Newfoundland or if you grew up there, then you’ve probable heard of these infamous toutons. The rest of you are probable going “what in the hell is a touton?” Well, to put it simply, a touton is a piece of fried bread dough. Yup, it’s as simple as that.  Now you’re probable wondering, why would I want to eat fried bread dough? Uh, because it’s delicious! It’s definitely not the healthiest recipe out there, but the touton is an age old Newfoundland tradition. Don’t quote me on it, but I believe that toutons manifested from the waste nothing attitude Newfoundlanders had when they were baking their daily bread. Basically they were created to use up leftover bread dough.

 

The old school way of cooking toutons is by frying them in fatback pork and then serving them with the ‘scrunchins’, which are the crunchy little bits of the fried pork. Nowadays, most people use healthier fats such as canola oil, and since I don’t want to hurt any piggies in the making of my toutons, that’s the road I took. You can also use another light tasting oil if that’s what you have on hand, or you can fry them in margarine to add an extra bit of flavour. The goal is to get the outside lightly browned and crispy, leaving the innards soft and fluffy with a slight chew. A delicious addition to breakfast or brunch, toutons are customarily served with some warm margarine and a drizzling of molasses, which according to P is the only way they should be served. I on the other hand like to go a more maply route, not that I have anything against molasses, I just see it as another excuse to slather something in maple syrup :)

This isn’t a recipe so much as instructions. Although, any white bread recipe should work, I prefer using my Newfoundland White Bread recipe which can be found here.
Once the dough has risen a second time, remove from bowl and shape into toutons. If you’re using the full bread dough recipe, divide the dough into 16 pieces. Shape pieces into round balls, cover and let rest as you heat the pan. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-low heat, add enough canola oil to cover the bottom. Flatten the pieces of dough and add them to the pan, only add enough so that you’re not crowding the pan. Fry for a few minutes on each side until they’re golden brown, I like to flatten them as they cook so that they’re a little more stodgy. Remove from skillet and serve warm with margarine and molasses.

 

On a completely unrelated topic, I was nominated for a versatile blogger award by Veggiewitch! Thank you so much Veggiewitch, you are one cool cat!
Now I guess I have to share 7 things about myself, ahhhhh…..hmmmm….ok, here we go:

1. In highschool I used to be in a Spice Girls tribute group. Parents would rent us for birthday parties and we used to dress-up, lip-sync, do dance routines and activities with the kids. I know you’re going to ask, so I’ll save you the trouble. I was was Sporty Spice.
2. I designed the mascot for my highschool. To this day, they still use it and everytime I see it all I want to do is fix it.
3. I’ve lived in Calgary for over 10 years and I only started driving a couple months ago. What can I say, I was a pansy and the public transportation is surprisingly good.
4. My nickname in highschool was Peg, as in Peg Bundy. I used to have long hair that I constantly dyed red, I was going for a Shirley Manson look but apparently did not succeed. One guy happened to call me Peg one time, and from that moment on I was forever known as Peg. 15 years have past and my highschool friends still refer to me as Peg.
5. The day before my grad pictures I dyed my hair blue. I did it for Halloween and was planning on washing it out, but since my hair was so damaged it ended up turning a gross green color, needless to say, I had to post-pone the pictures.
6. I never learned how to cook until I went vegetarian. Until then, my specialty was mac and cheese and…that’s it. Even the thought of making a stir-fry was enough to overwhelm me. P did all the cooking, if it wasn’t for him I would still be making him cringe everytime I awkwardly held a  knife, I can’t even count how many times he freaked out because he thought I was going to chop off my fingers. I’ve come a long way.
7. You know when couples haven been together for so long that they do that cutesie thing where they finish each others sentences? Well P and I have mastered the art of reading each others minds. There seems to be a perpetual habit where one of us will say out loud what the other is thinking. It happens so frequently that it’s gotten to the point where we creep each other out, seriously, it’s weird.

Now to nominate some other fantabulous bloggers! Although not all vegan, each of these blogs bring something special to the table (mostly food) and is part of my daily reading.

1. Kirsten’s Kitchen

2. Anna’s Appetite

3. Eat Me, Delicious

4. Olives For Dinner

5. Maple Spice

6. Clockwork Lemon

7. It Ain’t Meat Babe

8. Seitan is my Motor

9. Vegan Appetite

10. Vegan for the Win

11. Taste Space

12. Vegan in Brighton

13. Tahini Too

14. Corrina Darling

15. Cupcakes and Kale

22 thoughts on “Newfoundland Toutons

  1. I totally laughed out loud at this post. Then I got to Sporty Spice and I almost lost my cookies. Thats hilarious!
    You made this fried bread dough sound pretty damn tasty, despite never hearing of it before!
    Oh and I’ve lived in this city my whole life and never got my learners till I was 24. So no judging here.
    Congrats on the nomination! Is there somewhere we can vote for you? :)

    • Ha! Looking back, it’s seem pretty ridiculous, but at the time we were so into it. I had the kick down perfectly, lol.
      No voting necessary, just one blog passing it on to another:)

  2. I really want to spend some time in NFL…maybe next summer. I would prefer maple to molasses too:) these remind me of a cross between an English muffin and a pancake? Mmmmmmm
    Sporty spice! Ha. My time was a bit before the spice girls…but I did do a dance routine to ice ice baby in grade 7. Haha

    • You should definitely go there for a trip sometime, it’s beautiful mid to late summer.
      Ha ha, Ice Ice Baby? Priceless. I hope you still remember all the lyrics, to this day I can’t figure out what the hell he’s saying.

  3. Thanks for the nomination! OH and Sporty Spice was THE coolest spice girl in the group. WAY better than all the other ones…. heck, I even remember contemplating if I had enough money to buy her debut album back in the day (which I think was way better than Ginger Spice’s debut album when she left the group…).

    Mmmm, fried bread. I’ve eaten a lot of fried bread variations this past week and this one sounds like it would hit the spot (fried dough, margarine, molasses … drool** ) though I do agree maple > molasses. :)

    • Your welcome! She was totally the coolest! lol. Truth be told, I think everyone besides me wanted to be Ginger Spice.
      It really hits the spot, I love the texture the most. You haven’t had fried bread until you’ve had a touton ;)

  4. Pingback: Baked Lemon Cilantro Pakoras « the taste space – steam, bake, boil, shake!

    • When I typed it out, I had to stop and try to think whether it was actually a real word or not. Then I went ‘meh’ and kept going, ha ha.
      Yes, Garbage will always have a special place in me heart :)

  5. Sporty Spice – awesome!!! And Calgary! My family took a summer vacay in and around Banff every year and we always stopped in Calgary…home of the famous Calgary Stampede! Oh Canada, I miss it!!! I enjoy your posts about traditional Newfoundland fare – very interesting to read and learn.

    Seems like the machine gun is a good choice for the zombies. Although, then we would eventually have to learn how to make bullets and that would suck. Hmmm. Maybe I could just use one of my cats on them…all facial skin and muscle would be removed in like 0.00035467 seconds and that would be the end of THAT. It would just be a skull walking around. Then I could maybe punt it or something….then we could make toutons and celebrate.

    • Ha, ha, ha, I love your comments! Yes, I agree that a machine gun would be best, but it’d be difficult to find one here in Canada. Knives and kitty claws it is! We’ll just have to hope they’re the slow moving zombies, like in the original Dawn of the Dead, as opposed to the new one.
      Glad you like the Newfoundland posts. Just thought it be something fun and different to do.

  6. Maggie, thanks for the awesome honor! We’re about to go out of town, so I’m not sure when I’ll get to it, but it looks fun. So cool to learn a little more about you.

    Not sure if you saw it, but with the trip, I’ve delayed Food Network Friday, too. Just a heads up.

    Love this post! These look delicious.

  7. thanks for the lovely shoutout megan! does this mean i have to share equally random & hilarious facts about myself? because i’m not sure i can rival a spice girls tribute band…;)

    what concert did you see over the easter weekend? this music lover wants to know!

    • Of course it does Jess! I expect to see much more random and weird facts about you :)

      We went and saw Kasabian, I’m not a fan of the venue they played but the concert was really good! What types of music are you a lover of? I’m always looking for new music to add to my playlist.

      • okay, mental list of random facts has been started…

        i don’t know kasabian that well, but i like what i’ve heard. i’ve got varried tastes but i gravitate most towards college chart indie stuff – mostly the kinds of music we sell at our record store – cat power, plants & animals, the national, damien jurado, etc

  8. I’m looking forward to more of your Traditional Newfoundland recipes, these look (and probably are) delicious.

    I’m always so curious about learning more about the cuisines of Canada. Especially since people don’t think we have anything in particular! A Vegan Canadiana cookbook needs to happen.

    Love it!

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