Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Have You Heard This One? Five Americans Walk Into Canada...

Today’s blog entry will not be endorsed by the American Heart Association or Michelle Obama.

Just so you know.

The common thread between this post and the last one is gravy.  I used to think it was strictly an American thing, and that we had a fetish for covering our food with a starchy, meaty sauce.

But nope, turns out Canada’s been riding (and rocking) the gravy train for way longer than we have...but they do it with a lot more panache and pride than we do.

When Brent and the kids were visiting a couple of weeks ago, we decided to take a trip into Canada.  Why?  Because it was less than an hour away.  And because it’s a different country.  Miles became kilometers, the price of gas per gallon became the price per liter, Spanish translation of English signage became French translation.  Also, on two separate occasions we saw parents on bikes hauling their small children in wagon-looking contraptions...a sight you’d never see in safety-law-laden America.

Among other things, Canada is the original home of poutine.  Or, as Brent spells it: puteen.  Poutine is a slap-you-in-your-mouth, straight up heart attack...but it’s okay, because you know exactly what you’re signing up for.  Hell, when you got a dish in front of you that goes like this: French fries, cheese curds, gravy, and whatever special topping you’ve dreamed up, you just know you’re about to die from cholesterol overload.  And it’s totally cool, because you’re freaking owning it. 

We drove past Smoke’s Poutinerie (a freaking cool name for a place that sells poutine) as we were looking for another place to eat in Sault Ste. Marie.  Thankfully, my husband and kids are all good-natured, culinary-minded folk, and were willing to take chance.  It was a very successful gamble.

The base foundation of the poutine dishes at Smoke’s is French fries, cheese curds, and gravy.  Then, a plethora of add-on choices were available.  Kirby tried the special of the day: Samosa Poutine.  I had the Pulled Pork Poutine.  Brent went with the Nacho Poutine.  Spencer did a Bacon-Chili Poutine, and Elliot rocked a Bacon Cheeseburger Poutine.

My Pulled Pork
Kirby's Samosa
Spencer's Bacon-Chili Thing

Yeah. You’re seeing the pattern here, right? Not heart-healthy fare.  But...you already know that going in.  No delusions equals no guilt.  Well, maybe, a smidge of guilt, but you’re on vacation so who cares?

I’m surprised, honestly, that poutine is not a little more popular here in the US.  It’s got everything we love in excess...fries, gravy, and cheese.   

I’d consider open a poutine restaurant in my hometown, but I’m pretty sure it would not be Blue Zones-endorsed.  And Mrs. Obama would not like it at all.

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