Recipe: Poutine

Poutine

Poutine is an odd thing. It originated in rural Québec in the 1950’s and it basically consists of french fries, a brown gravy and curd cheese. It seems to be the Canadian equivalent to America’s comfort food Mac and Cheese. It is primarily found in Canadian fast food chains and diners — cantines or casse-croûtes. Poutine variations can also contain meat, beef, pulled pork, etc., but that just seems to be gilding the lily I think! There are many variations on the theme — Mexican Poutine, Italian Poutine, Mushroom Poutine, etc. You get the picture.

Basic Recipe for Poutine:

  • French Fries – Fried, soft interior with crisp exterior
  • Cheese curds – small, fresh curds.
  • Gravy – A light, thin, generally chicken gravy, mildly spiced, with a slight sour flavoring (vinegar) to balance out the richness of the gravy, fries and cheese. (Chuck Hughes offers a gravy recipe for Poutine.)

That’s about it. But, let’s face it, this is much better eaten at a local diner or fast food place. After all, it is comfort food.

Poutine in Luc Robitaille’s favorite place

 

 

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Recipes: Cooking with Unibroue

Unibroue, the Québec beer maker has provided a wonderful group of recipes made with their special beers. Give them a try! The beer maker has also supplied a very nice list of cocktail recipes.

Blanche de Chambly

Blonde de Chambly

Don de Dieu

Éphémère Apple

Éphémère Blackcurrent

Éphémère Cherry

La Fin du Monde

Maudite

Noire de Chambly

Quelque Chose

Raftman

Trois Pistoles

Recipe: Coconut Maple Porter Ice Cream

Coconut Maple Porter Ice Cream

Coconut Maple Porter Ice Cream (Courtesy of the Brooklyn Brew Shop)

Recently, my local pub has been offering fruit ale cheesecakes — strawberry, apricot and raspberry . Traditionally they have offered Oatmeal Stout and Chocolate Stout cheesecakes but they have bumped it up a notch this summer with their fruit ale flavored cheesecakes. It is light and fluffy, not as heavy as your traditional New York Cheesecake. Absolutely wonderful! And now with the August heat and humidity, cold frozen ice cream has been calling, but what about one with a flavored ale or Stout?

From the Brooklyn Brew Shop comes this cool summer delight — Coconut Maple Porter Ice Cream! Give it a try. The Maple Porter is delicious, but you can try any dark flavorful beer. 

| Ingredients 

5 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup regular coconut milk
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/4 cup Chocolate Maple Porter (or any dark, delicious beer)

| Directions 

In a medium-sized thick-bottomed pot combine coconut milk, heavy cream, and Porter and cook over low heat just until hot.

In a medium bowl whisk together egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale, about three minutes.

Using a ladle or a small measuring cup, scoop a few small amounts of the hot liquid into your egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Once you’ve scooped in enough liquid for the yolks to become warm (about three scoops), gently whisk the mixture back into your saucepan with the remaining coconut milk, cream, and beer.

Turn the heat to medium and stir constantly with a wooden spoon until mixture is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon in a thin, creamy layer.

Transfer through a strainer and into a bowl. Refrigerate until cool, and churn in your ice cream maker to preferred consistency. Freeze until hard and enjoy.

Recipe: Pumpkin Cake

Pumpkin Cake

Pumpkin Cake

This recipe is adapted from a Pumpkin Blondie recipe — I added a bit more flour and baking soda and omitted the White chocolate chips. It makes a very delicious, light and moist cake!

Ingredients

2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 ¼ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. salt
16 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup brown sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup pumpkin puree
½ cup toasted pecans, then chopped

Icing

1 cup powdered sugar
Cream – enough to make a thin glaze to drizzle over top

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease and flour (or use bakers spray) a 9×13-inch baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt. Stir together and set aside. Toast pecans in oven until lightly toasted.

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In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla until well combined. Mix in the pumpkin puree.

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With the mixer on low speed add the dry ingredients and mix just until incorporated.

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Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Top with toasted chopped pecans. (You can fold them into the batter if you choose.)

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Bake until the edges begin to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs, about 35-40 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely before cutting.

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Drizzle icing over the top of the cooled cake. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cake

Recipe: Poutine

Poutine is an odd thing. It originated in rural Québec in the 1950’s and it basically consists of french fries, a brown gravy and curd cheese. It seems to be the Canadian equivalent to America’s comfort food Mac and Cheese. It is primarily found in Canadian fast food chains and diners — cantines or casse-croûtes. Poutine variations can also contain meat, beef, pulled pork, etc., but that just seems to be gilding the lily I think! There are many variations on the theme — Mexican Poutine, Italian Poutine, Mushroom Poutine, etc. You get the picture.

Basic Recipe for Poutine:

  • French Fries – Fried, soft interior with crisp exterior
  • Cheese curds – small, fresh curds.
  • Gravy – A light, thin, generally chicken gravy, mildly spiced, with a slight sour flavoring (vinegar) to balance out the richness of the gravy, fries and cheese. (Chuck Hughes offers a gravy recipe for Poutine.)

That’s about it. But, let’s face it, this is much better eaten at a local diner or fast food place. After all, it is comfort food.

Poutine in Luc Robitaille’s favorite place

Recipe: Infused Cherry-Orange Bourbon

I love to experiment with infused liquors and this caught my interest immediately since I am very partial to both sour cherries and bourbon. And the two together are a wonderful combination. Throughout the fall season I will post more drink recipes to go along with the infusion since it lends itself so well to fall and cool, crisp evenings!

Tart Cherry-Orange Infused Bourbon

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen sour cherries
  • 1 strip orange zest
  • 500 ml Bourbon

Directions

  • Combine ingredients in a clean one-liter jar with a lid. Store in the refrigerator and shake daily for 4 days until infused, then strain and discard solids.

Sour-Cherry Old Fashioned

Ingredients

  • 3 slices orange
  • 2 ounces Cherry-Orange Bourbon
  • Ginger ale
  • Maraschino cherries

Directions

  • In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add orange and bourbon. Shake well, pour into a highball glass, and top with ginger ale and cherries.

Source: Everyday Food, June 2012.

Recipe: Tartre au sucre – Québec Sugar Pie

Tartre au sucre et à la crème de Québec. Photo: Recettes AllRecipes Québec (qc.allrecipes.ca)

The French-Canadian culture has an extraordinarily rich culinary history and I hope to explore it more fully in the hockey season to come. In honor of our Québec hockey fans, I give you the traditional Québec Sugar Pie, Tartre au sucre.  It is similar to a pie in the American south, the Chess Pie, or even a Pecan Pie, without the pecans, but with subtle variations. I love pies of this genre, with their subtle but incredibly rich flavors. A small sliver can go a long way with a mug of coffee. Even for breakfast!

I am exploring recipes for this particular pie and will provide updates as I narrow down my choices. If you have a favorite version of this pie, please let me know!

Tartre au sucre – Québec Sugar Pie

One Tartre au sucre recipe from Group Recipes looks very promising! Some recipes contain an egg (and yet another) and others do not. My advice: do not stint on the ingredients. Use fresh good butter. Likewise with the sugars and extracts.

INGREDIENTS


  • 1 pie crust, unbaked
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar (or half brown sugar, or half maple sugar)
  • 1 ½ cups low fat evaporated milk
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or maple extract

HOW TO MAKE IT


  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • In a saucepan, combine flour and sugar and mix.
  • Stir in milk slowly to avoid lumps, then add butter and salt.
  • Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil.
  • Remove from heat, add vanilla or maple extract.
  • Pour into an unbaked pie shell.
  • Bake at 400F for 5 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to 350F and continue baking for 25 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and let cool in a rack.
  • Serve cooled in small wedges, with vanilla ice cream or lightly sweetened whipped cream if desired.

Bon appétit!