Initially, I couldn’t bring myself to eat a food whose name meant “boot” in my mother language. However, once I tried it, there was no going back. And let me tell you, dear Haligonians, the best poutine I have had so far was not served in some local “authentic” downtown place, but, (and I refuse to be ashamed) at the fast food court in the giant wholeseller Costco, at Bayer’s Lake. The french fries were yellower and crisper, the cheese was cheesier, and the gravy was gravier.
Because that is all that poutine is. Take a dish full of freshly fried potatoes. Sprinkle liberally with cheese pieces (apparently the original version is curds, but people stopped eating curds since Laura Ingalls grew up and began buying milk from the grocer instead of milking their cow). Pour over gravy. Attack with a fork.
Since I discovered poutine, every few weeks or so I develop these weird hunger pangs which can only be satisfied with a dish of poutine. In this respect, it is much like the Iranian chelo-kebab- it creates that particular sort of need which can only be satisfied by itself. Once you’ve had your poutine, you become absolutely full for the next eight or so hours- again like chelo-kebab, so you can have your poutine and also convince yourself you are following a sort of mystical weight-control program.