Fries, cheese curds, and gravy. Without even trying, poutine is delicious comfort food you’ll come back to again and again. So why not learn to make it right?
Poutine begins with boiled potatoes fried in a heat-stable fat, like lard or tallow. Because texture can make or break a dish, aim for fries with a crispy exterior and a pillowy center. Once golden brown and still too hot to touch, sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Then top your fries (and broccolini, if you please) with crumbled fresh cheese curds and homemade gravy .
Otherwise known as “squeaky cheese,” cheese curds are as important to traditional poutine as the fries. Fresh cheese curds have a mild flavor and a springy texture that squeak against the teeth when bitten into. In Québec, Canada — where the dish originated — you typically pour hot gravy over the room-temperature curds so that they warm without completely melting.
Poutine with Broccolini
- 2 bunches broccolini
- 4 tbsp. butter
- 4 tbsp. sprouted flour
- 2 tsp. coarse sea salt, plus more to taste
- 1 tsp. ground black pepper, plus more to taste
- 1 qt chicken stock
- 4 lb russet potatoes
- 1 c lard, or tallow
- 16 oz Monterey Jack cheese, or cheese curds
- Pull broccolini apart into small bite-sized pieces and rinse well. Place broccolini in the pan over medium high heat and cover, steaming for 2-3 minutes until bright green. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine the butter, sprouted flour, half the sea salt, and half the fresh ground black pepper. Whisk until incorporated and no lumps remain. Cook on medium heat for 10-15 minutes.
- Whisk in the chicken stock, continuing to stir out any lumps as you go, and bring the liquid to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and continue cooking for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat and keep warm.
- Peel the potatoes and cut into fries, 3-4 inches long by 1/4 to 1/2-inch wide.
- Bring a pot of filtered water to a boil. Add the potatoes and blanch for 3-5 minutes. Remove, drain and cool. Pat with a dish cloth until completely dry.
- Fry the potatoes in lard or tallow until golden brown.
- Remove and drain on paper towels. Season with salt and pepper. Strain and reserve fat for future cooking.
- Plate the fries and broccolini on plates. Crumble the cheese on top into bite-size pieces and pour hot gravy over top. Serve immediately.