Vegetarian Poutine

Yesterday in Seattle something unearthly happened. The sun shone. The sun and its strength were completely unexpected, so much so that I got a very unattractive sunburn on my nose. This was extremely displeasing to me. My family lives in Canada, where it is super cold. I am always trying to convince them to move to the Pacific Northwest. I like to taunt them with days like this.

With all this sun, Brent, Ody, and I went to a picnic potluck party in the park. Try saying that fast 10 times. In preparation for this picnic, I tried to make macarons, which failed, followed by macaroons, which also failed. After spending a great deal of time in the kitchen, I got really mad and threw them both against the wall. I was annoyed, my husband was scared, my dog was excited. In the end, we all laughed. So instead of bringing French pastries, we brought veggie dogs. And, I also threw out that super horrible baking book which leads me to fail every time.

With all this nice weather around here and talk of my family, I decided to make a familiar snack - poutine. Poutine is an authentically Canadian dish. It originated in the French-speaking province of Quebec. Poutine is made by taking french fries, sprinkling them with cheese curds, and drizzling gravy over the top. It is a magical combination. If you are looking for another authentic Canadian dish, go here.

Since becoming a vegetarian, there are very few opportunities where I am able to order poutine at a restaurant because most serve it with beef gravy. If you can get your hands on some delicious vegetable broth, that is the ticket. Homemade poutine is so easy to make. You should try it yourself!

VEGETARIAN POUTINE RECIPE

makes 4 servings

INGREDIENTS

4 small or 2 large Russet potatoes

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp butter, salted

2 tbsp all purpose flour

1 cup vegetable broth

1/2 lb cheese curds

Preheat the oven to 450ยบF.

Scrub the potatoes and julienne with the skins left on. Place into a large bowl filled with cold water and then place into the fridge for 1 hour. This will remove some of the starch, making the french fries more crispy once baked.

Drain the water, pat the potatoes dry and then spread onto a baking sheet. Toss with olive oil and bake for 35 - 40 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden brown and crispy.

Heat the butter and flour in a medium saucepan on low heat until it starts to foam. With a wire whisk, slowly add in the vegetable stock stirring rapidly. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the gravy has thickened, stirring occasionally.

Once the french fries have cooked, remove them from the oven and place onto a serving plate. Top with cheese curds and then pour gravy over top. Serve warm.