I've been enthralled with Canadian culture for a while. It's a combination of hockey, music, and teenage soap operas. Mainly the last one. I wait with bated breath for the next episode of Degrassi: The Next Generation. I'm addicted to it. In a very unhealthy way.
Made more unhealthy by the fact that it's sparked a curiosity in me about poutine. Poutine is the national dish of Canada. It's what the Quebecois fur trappers used to eat on the tundra when the winters got tough and they needed to keep up their strength for the annual reindeer chase. With the upcoming premier of the Degrassi Spring Break Movie, I could see no reason to put off trying this mightily caloric dish.
I had ordered the sauce mix on Ebay some months back. It's from Canada's first fast food chain restaurant, St Hubert. It is of course named after the patron saint of poutine, who is a national hero in Canada. St Hubert day is a nationally recognized holiday that everyone gets off work to drink Labatt Blue and eat poutine in his honor.
Damn you, Ebay!
The potato strips got drained and dried and then dropped in 325 degree oil for about 10 minutes, or long enough for them to get pretty flexible. Then I let the rest on paper towels for about 15 minutes, but you can leave them for up to two hours before finishing them. When I was ready to assemble my poutine, I put the fries back into the oil now at 350 for a couple minutes to crisp the outsides. Man they were tasty.
The next ingredient needed for poutine glory is fresh white cheddar cheese curds. Luckily, I live in Seattle, and have access to Beecher's cheese shop. They make cheese on site and a variety of cheese-related items. Their mac and cheese is something magical to behold. Anyway, I picked up my curds there, and applied them to my poutine project.
By the way, the Degrassi Spring Break Movie was something of a disappointment. It was more like three episodes of the show rather than an actual movie, especially in the A-plot B-plot aspect. The A-plot did involve my favorite character getting into wacky adventures, which is awesome, but the B-plot sucked big time. Come on, Degrassi, was that really necessary?