Poutine is a once in a blue moon kind of dish. Or at least it should be. Eating this on a regular basis would be dire to your waistline, just for starters. But it is an oddly satisfying food. It’s hard to explain, but it works. It’s a total comfort food.
What exactly is Poutine? If you’re not from Canada, you’ve probably never heard of it. In a nutshell, Poutine is a dish which consists of french fries topped with cheese curds and covered in hot gravy…Yup, you read that right!
The dish originates from Quebec and came to be sometime in the 1950’s as the legend goes. It has expanded its way from there and its fairly commonly found in most Provinces now. Most fast food restaurants here now include it on their regular menus. Though I think the best Poutines are still to be found in pubs and little greasy spoons or right in your own kitchen! Homestyle Poutine is easy to make and just as yummy as your favourite greasy spoon versions.
I think making your own Homestyle Poutine is super easy, the bulk of the work comes in making your own hand-cut fries.
I pick up my cheese curds from my local grocery store. Pretty easy huh! Here I’ve chosen to go with BBQ cheese curds, the regular ones are plain with no coating.
I don’t bother with making my gravy, I just pick up a can of Poutine gravy. I know, a total cheat, but totally worth it! Plus it’s good stuff. The one I use is from a National restaurant chain known for its chicken and ribs. There are other choices for Poutine gravy available here, I just like to use St.Hubert’s. It’s fast. It’s easy. And its good. Good enough for me! St.Hubert’s Poutine gravy isn’t thick at all, in fact it’s very much on the thin side, more like a dipping sauce than a thick traditional gravy.
You could whip up your own versions of Homestyle Poutine and make everything from scratch, but since this is something I have only once in a while, usually to satisfy some weird craving, I like to be able to whip it up super fast with minimal amount of prep and kitchen time. Don’t skimp on the fries though…that would just be wrong. I make mine from scratch, every time!
So. How exactly do we go about going from this…
Pretty easily. All it takes is a good baking potato, I like to use Russet potatoes for my french fries. They get nice and crisp on the outside but stay light and fluffy on the inside. Potato perfection.
You can use a fry cutter to maker perfect sized fries. I know I used to own one, but where exactly it lives now is a mystery to me. I realized how ridiculous it was that I was wasting time tearing my kitchen apart looking for it when I could just be using my chef knife and doing it myself. I’m pretty sure I mumbled something to myself about being silly. You own knives woman, now use them! Yah, take that french fry cutter! I have knives!
After cutting my fries into roughly equal size. I didn’t exactly get my ruler out and start measuring everything. I just wanted to make some french fries so I could eat some Homestyle Poutine! I rinsed the fresh-cut fries in a bowl of water until the water remained clear. I drained them and dried them out with a clean dish towel.
I set my oil to eat on the stove. I use fresh oil when frying, use whatever kind you prefer to fry with. Make sure your pot is large enough to leave you with about 3 inches of space from the top of the oil and the top of your frying pot. You don’t want hot oil boiling over the edge of your pot and causing a kitchen fire. Have a tight-fitting lid nearby that fits the pan. I have a fancy little restaurant style deep fryer for my counter. It requires a ton of oil to use, so I very rarely use it for small fry ups. If I’m doing a small batch fry job, I usually stick with my trusty sauce pan that has a nice fitting lid.
My motto is when deep-frying, be ready for anything. My pot lid is always right next to me and I have a fire extinguisher in my kitchen. I’ve been deep-frying for over 20+ years and I’ve never had a kitchen fire, but its good to be ready for the possibility that something might go wrong. I use a deep fry thermometer, I also rely on my eyes. If your oil starts to smoke, its getting way to hot. Never turn your back to a pot of hot oil, pay attention to it and you’ll do fine.
I like to double fry my french fries. Why? Because my French mother always double fried our french fries. If its good enough for the French I say! I cook them once at a lower temperature, 325F, for roughly 5 minutes, I don’t want them to brown at this stage. Remove fries, let them drain and sit for about 10 minutes. Your french fries should look something like this after the first cooking…
I turn the heat up and when the oil reaches 350F I fry them a second time till they are golden brown.
While your french fries are cooking, you should be heating up your gravy. Everything has to be ready as soon as your fries are.
After your fries are done cooking the second time, you want to drain them, plate, cover in cheese curds and pour your hot gravy over everything.
The hot fries and the hot gravy help soften and melt the cheese curds. You basically end up with a ooey gooey mess that should make your belly happy!
Home-style Poutine is a total comfort food for me. Something enjoyed occasionally, when that weird craving strikes.
Weird cravings are AWESOME!
- 1 large Russet potato
- 5 oz. Cheese Curds
- I can Poutine Gravy, 398ml, use only enough to cover your individual serving
- Oil for Deep Frying
- Wash potato.
- Cut into similar sized sticks or use a french fry cutter.
- Heat oil to 325F.
- Fry potato for roughly 5 minutes, remove before they begin to brown.
- Drain and let sit 10 minutes.
- Heat Poutine gravy.
- Heat oil to 350F and fry the potato a second time until golden brown.
- Drain French Fries.
- Plate fries, top with cheese curds and pour hot gravy over top.
- Dig In!