Poutine – Part 3

Ah, poutine…how I love thee, let me count the ways.  This is absolutely one of my favorite foods in the whole world.  Ever since my trip to Montreal and Quebec City in 1996, I’ve been looking for this dish in the US.  Sadly, I couldn’t find anything that came close.  When I went to Toronto in 2003, I couldn’t find it.  Argh!  So I thought I’d try to make it at home.  Many a recipes I tried, but this one was the closest I found to be the real thing.  And it may be because I made the cheese at home!  It seems so simple: Fries, cheese, and gravy.  But the fries has to be fried to a certain crispness, the cheese has to be less than 24 hours old, and the gravy needs to be just perfect.  Needless to say, this recipe may have came close, but I have to get a Canadian to taste it to certify it.

2 Russet potatoes
frying oil, preferably vegetable oil.
Fresh cheese curds (part 1) (view recipe)
Velouté Sauce (part 2) (view recipe)

Before we begin, let’s heat up the frying oil.  If you don’t have a frying machine, pour oil in a pot and heat to medium (6 on my electric stove).  It’ll take a while for the oil to reach the correct temperature.

Two big ugly potatoes

Peel and cut the potato lengthwise.

Give the potato a quick rinse.  This washes off the starches that are abundant in Idaho potatoes.

Soak the potatoes in a bowl of water.  This further removes the starches from the potato.  This will result in a crispier fry.

After a bit of soaking, remove from the water and pat dry with a paper towel.  IMPORTANT:  Hot oil and water do not mix, so really make sure the potato is totally dry.

Dump a handful into the hot oil but too much where it’s over crowded.  Over crowding will drop the oil temperature causing a longing frying time and the oil seeping into the potato causing the fry to be limp.  Fry until golden brown.

Remove fries from oil and on a paper towel to soak up the oil.  Sprinkle some salt on top.  It’s important to salt it fresh out of the fryer as it’ll stick better to the fries.

Now comes time to assemble the poutine!

Start with a little layer of the cheese curds.

Put some fresh fries over the cheese curds.

Sprinkle on some more cheese curds over the fries.

Pour some sauce on it and voila! Poutine!!

– Max

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