The Perfect Canadian Poutine

Poutine originated in Quebec, Canada, it is a dish consisting of cheese curds and French fries topped with delicious brown gravy. Still popular today, poutine emerged in Centre-du-Quebec in the late 1950s and is celebrated as a Quebecois symbol.

Today, poutine is available anywhere in Canada, from Michelin-starred restaurants to roadside diners and even at McDonald’s and street stalls. Unofficially, it is the official dish of the country, and some think it even more popular than maple syrup. Getting this dish to perfection means the chips are cut fairly thin to allow the gravy to filter down, and the chips must be crispy. The perfect chips recipe is available in Jamie Oliver’s Comfort Food book, and by following it, the chips will always be fluffy on the inside and crispy on the outside. Getting the grave just right is ensuring it is thick and most Canadians do add cranberry sauce to enjoy a sweeter version of the gravy, no matter how you prefer Poutine, it is one dish that is exploding with flavour.

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 3 people
Energy: 528 kcal

Authentic Canadian Poutine featuring fries, gravy and cheddar cheese curds mixed together.

Poutine Gravy Ingredients:

3 Tbsp corn-starch
20 oz beef broth
Peanut or other frying oil
6 Tbsp unsalted butter
Pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp water
1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
10 oz chicken broth

Deep Fried Fries Ingredients:
2 lbs Russet potatoes

Toppings:
1 – 1 1/2 cups cheese (white cheddar or mozzarella)

Instructions:

Gravy:

In a separate bowl, the corn-starch can be dissolved in the water and then moved to the aside.

In a large saucepan, butter should be melted, cook after flour is added, regular stirring is required for the next 5 minutes when the mix appears golden brown.

Add the chicken and beef broth and boil while stirring with a whisk. Simmer after the corn-starch is added until it thickens or for about 3 to 5 minutes.
Season to taste with pepper and if necessary add additional salt to taste.

Deep-Fried Fries:

Cut potatoes into 1/2-inch thick chip slices. Place into a large bowl and cover with cold water. Leave to stand for an hour or more. Heat oil in deep fryer or large, heavy pot to 300° F.
Remove the potatoes from the water and drain access water via paper towel. Blot to remove last bit of moisture.
Add your fries to the 300°F oil and cook for 5-8 minutes remove once potatoes are starting to cook but before browned. Increase oil temperature to 375°F. Once the oil is heated, add the potatoes back to the oil, and cook until golden brown. Place on a paper towel-lined bowl.

To Prepare Poutine:

Add baked and fried fries to a large bowl. Season salt while warm and add hot poutine gravy then toss the fries in the gravy, before adding more gravy until most of the fries are coated. Complete with cheese and serve immediately.

Most Delicious Desserts Served in Quebec

There are a few things Quebecers won’t deny and that is the fact that they have a strong sense of tradition, a sweet tooth and very active imaginations. Which could be all factors contributing to the most delicious desserts served in Quebec.

The classic dessert of Quebec is the Pounding Chomeur, it is a recipe passed from one generation to the next for the past 90 years. The title of the pudding translates to the poor man’s pudding or as same calls it the unemployment pudding, and it shows just how creative Quebecers can be even in economic crises. The recipe dates to the early 1929s when industrial workers in Montreal were laid off and money was tight for most families. Everyone had to cope with a few resources and it is not known who first decided to try using cheap ingredients to create this poor man’s delight. At first, it was made by soaking stale bread in brown sugar syrup and water, which at the time were more affordable than sugar.

The Poor Man’s Dessert

The dessert recipe spread very quickly from one to the next disadvantaged areas and over the years it improved as the ingredients could include butter, brown sugar, flour, eggs, maple syrup and cream, while some variations even include chocolate. The ingredients are mixed to make up a white cake and then maple syrup, water with brown sugar is poured onto it. It remains one of the most popular desserts with Quebec families and is served in sugar shacks and restaurants.

Date Squares Ingrained into the DNA of All Quebec Grandmothers

Date squares are somewhere between a healthy snack and dessert as it is one of the most popular classic treats in Quebec and it provides tons of energy. The squares comprise of two layers of crumble made with oat flakes or oatmeal and brown sugar that holds a layer of date puree.

Some variation of the date squares now includes pumpkin puree, grated carrots, meringue or pineapple and many adds coffee or orange juice for flavour. Quebec chefs have come up with some of the most adventurous and tastiest renditions, these include date cream used to cover shortbread crusts then served with ginger mousse topped with walnuts.

Five Must-Try Quebec City Restaurants

Quebec City is one full of vibrant restaurants and is one of the oldest settlements in North American. It is a culture that is a mix of European settlers from many countries. That has seen its culinary scene filled with a delectable selection of different dining options.

Regardless of the time of year, finding a hotspot showcasing the culinary scene in Quebec City is not difficult at all. Whether that is street vendors, cafes, pubs or restaurants, the bounties are plentiful and include fresh local produce, baked goods, cheeses, wines and more. The fact is, Quebec City’s culinary scene is both a historic and international influences.

To celebrate its rich culinary history, we thought we would present you with our list of five must try Quebec City Restaurants

1. Café Saint-Malo

The Café Saint-Malois named after a fishing village in France. It is one that fills you with a feeling of old world charm, and since 1982, its chefs have been delighting the taste buds of patrons with French onion soup made to cassoulets loaded with seasonal ingredients. It is the perfect spot for lunch or dinner and is only steps away from the Rue Saint-Paul antique district.

2. Panache:

Panache is another favourite of ours. Located near the St. Lawrence River, in the hotel Auberge Saint-Antoine it focuses on modern cuisine and has put Quebec City on the map with its creative dishes. This is more of an upscale restaurant that offers stone walls with exposed beams that together create an environment that is laid back, yet chic at the same time.

3. Le Saint-Amour:

Le Saint-Amour is a well-known restaurant in Quebec City having been in business for 40 years. It is located on Rue Sainte-Ursule and with Chef Jean-Luc Boulay at the helm, it is one that will delight you from beginning to end. Guests have the opportunity to dine in its greenhouse or its garden room and the food served with surly please.

4. Le Chic Shack:

If you are looking for the best place to sample poutine in the city, follow the locals, and Le Chic Shack is the place they go when the lure of French fries, gravy and cheese curds are the call of the day. The owners of Le Chic are the same duo that operates Panache and offer their version of this famous French Canadian delight by mashing the potatoes prior to frying them. Add in local cheese, fresh herbs and their special black-pepper gravy, and your taste buds will thank you.

5. Le Clocher Penché Bistrot:

Le Clocher Penché Bistrot is found in the cities Saint-Roch district. This restaurant focuses on fresh local ingredients sourced from Quebec’s farmers such as the organic vegetable farm, Ferme des Monts. They include lunch and brunch dining options as well as dinner.

Epic Summer Adventures & Great Food in Ontario

Ontario is Canada’s most popular tourist destination and said to be the most welcoming to newcomers. It is one of the most populous provinces with a population of around 13,650. Blessed with fresh water, it offers visiting families a wide variety of resorts to choose from, while the epic summer holiday can include beaching, rafting & paddling, and house boating.

For a more relaxing or special experience, Ontario offers some of the best spas and wellness retreats, while lazy days could include a visit to the farmers market. The winery and brew tours provide visitors with the opportunity to step into a wine lovers heaven or a taste of the finest craft beer.

Niagara Home to The Most Stunning Natural Wonder

While several day trips ensure visitors get to enjoy the best views of the Niagara Falls in Canada, it is often the 19th-century buildings placed mainly along Queen that charms their way into your heart. Considered one of the most progressive provinces, Ontario is home to some of the biggest sports enthusiasts.

Ontario residents have access to some of the greatest teams, and thankfully sports betting is legal if betting takes place at licensed betting houses. The largest of all sports betting venues near Niagara is the Casino Niagara while the Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort and Caesars Windsor also accept sports bets.

Online Sportsbooks for Canadian Gamblers

Finally enjoying that long awaited holiday with the family, going into a casino to place bets on your favourite team or sports event is not ideal. With top online sportsbooks for Canadian Gamblers available via your mobile device, it is quick and easy to place bets and enjoy a meal at one of the vibrant cafés during your stay. It is possible to have the best of both worlds, a great holiday and continuing to bet on your favourite team, by visiting a professional, trustworthy site such as online-casino-canada.ca, you find the most dependable sports betting sites offering the best odds.

There is a fantastic variety of food served near Niagara that includes sweet & buckwheat crepes at the Paris Crepes Café, burgers or breakfast at The Famous. A wonderful kid’s friendly atmosphere is what makes the Butterfly Café a huge favourite, open every day from 9 am to 7 pm.

Whether it’s warm bistro with a classic French fare or playful American food your family enjoy, Niagara has it covered. While there is the more traditional flare of dining options as mentioned above, there are also many international dining options as Niagara Falls plays host to a wide range of visitors from all corners of the globe. As such, those wishing to try something that is out of the norm will find many delightful dining options.

Good Food Served at Canada’s Top Local Café

The national pastime for Canadians is eating well, and therefore nothing beats eating at the local café in the company of friends and family. Canada’s abundant restaurant and café culture are perfect for meeting new or meeting up with life-long friends. For both visitors and locals, Canada offers a unique experience and exploring the top local café spots can be a highly exciting venture.

Montreal

In Montreal, the best food includes unparalleled French toast, which is a sacred dish. French toast is an only-in-Quebec thing that makes visitors part of the community, and by ordering this at one of the best local cafés in the late afternoon, you could also enjoy the sunset view from the island.

Montreal is known for its sizzling Singaporean spice dishes served at temporary stands during the busy holiday seasons. The stand’s spices boiling laksa and aroma of spices are irresistible, and those lucky enough to enjoy this treat say the papaya salad and pork buns are the best.

Manitoba

A visit to Manitoba only 30 minutes from Winnipeg offers the perfect opportunity to visit one of the classic hangouts. The meal to order is the double cheese and bacon Saturn Burger completed by a soft serve for dessert.

Toronto

Toronto said to offer the best Ethiopian fusion in the unlikeliest places. The city offers a diverse and delightful buffet of international treats which includes even a vegetarian-friendly Ethiopian fusion café. Toronto also offers a café that is most definitely not your ordinary joint when it comes to BBQ. Often referred to as the city that serves world-class barbecue, you can enjoy Canada’s whimsical drink, craft beer with brisket and pulled pork while the local café also offers vegetarian options.
You might have to stay over longer than planned since Toronto also offer award-winning tacos served at colourful restaurants where outdoor fire pits add to the vibe.

After spending a day on the Whistler hill, a margarita might be your first choice followed by sushi at one of the great places that serve great food. The locals suggest the melt-in-your-mouth goodness of sashimi.

Halifax

Halifax is where you’ll find the best savoury burgers served in a diner atmosphere. This is also the home of the popular and somewhat famous Peanut Butter Burger, although the locals also enjoy Cajun chicken burgers paired with chocolate peanut butter milkshakes.

Canadian dishes are difficult to classify, it is the country that has a cuisine of cuisines according to the former prime minister. Basically, Canada offers a collage of fabulous dishes, food impacted and shaped by the continual immigration waves imitates different types that reflect its positivity towards immigration.

Top 5 Café’s in Toronto, Canada

One of the main arguments today is if having an increasing rate of café’s opening in one area a sign of success? In most cases, the answer to that question is yes. Many of the frequent Top 5 Café’s in Toronto have the leisure time of doing so, meaning in most cases they are financially stable enough to spend time in café’s along with having the freedom from their daily jobs, even if only for a short period. While other café patrons use the open and relaxing environment as a workspace due to the constant scent of coffee and aroma from the pastries that cafés are known to frequently serve. Though on the other hand, the café owners themselves play a major part as they are the ones who must sit in these areas, determine if opening a café would be profitable, and start their business.

In the ever growing and lively area of downtown Toronto, there has been an equally growing amount of independently owned cafes spots that are known for their coffee and pastry mixtures. An array of some of the most popular cafes in Canada, such as Crema, Dark Horse, and Jimmy’s have become successful enough to spread their business across the entire city. Though, there are even more delicious café’s that that should be considered the next time you happen to visit downtown Toronto. Listed below are our favourite 5 cafes in the city that has created loyal customers out of us due the delicious and fresh coffee brews and their scrumptious array of snacks to east on the side.

1. Snakes and Lattes


While this café may seem like it serves snakes on the side – you couldn’t be further from the truth. This cozy café is known for its delicious and unique Nutella lattés, scrumptious sandwiches, and its long menu of delicious meals for adults and children alike. The real kicker is that this café features wall filled with bookcases with a multitude of books all from different genres. Moreover, the café has over 3,000 board games that can be played during your stay. Its no wonder why this is such a recommended café for the socialites of Toronto.

2. Manic Coffee

This café is known for starting from a Kickstarter, along with other cafés in the early 2000’s. Since its grand opening, it has become a popular café to stop by due to its friendly and quiet vibe. Many indie lovers always flock to this café due to it resembling a café that would been seen in the previous decades, but with a modern twist. Along with its delicious coffee and homey environment, Manic Coffee is known for their delicious house-made gelato that serves as the perfect side during the summer and spring.

3. The Tempered Room


The Tempered Room is known for an array of things, one being the critically acclaimed pastry chef Bertrand Alépée serving his delicious and stunning desserts to complement your coffee, or maybe for the classic and comfortable atmosphere of the café that features a detailed brick wall, and sometimes even for their freshly brewed and famous coffee.

4. Fahrenheit Coffee

Even though Fahrenheit Coffee may be a smaller scale café, tier drinks and pastry combination packs a punch. This personal café features a lovely high bar seating area so patrons can enjoy the calming environment along with enjoying the scents of the array of freshly brewed coffee flavours and the sweet scent of their pastry collection.

5. De Mello Palheta


If you’re looking for the perfect combination between having a high-quality café along with a lively but perfect setting to sit down and do some work – then De Mello Palheta is the café you should go to. Due to the array of single or two-seater tables, patrons will be able to focus on their work while enjoying a nice side of fresh coffee to give them that much needed energy boost. Plus, their modern and interesting interior makes this café stand out from the rest.

How to Make Poutine

Poutine has to be THE dish of Canada, and it is not only delicious but also very easy to prepare. It is a pretty basic dish make of French fries, cheese curds, and gravy. There are many variations of the dish that can be made but don’t call it a Poutine unless it has these three ingredients.

1) Pick the Poutine you want to make: the classic way to make Poutine is the French fries, cheese curds, and gravy, but you can make variations. You can add other things such as bacon or ham and make with mac and cheese and add anything you really want. As long as you have the main three ingredients you are set and then go from there.

2) The fries are key:
One of the nice things about Poutine is that you can use, pretty much, any types of fries from the basic straight cuts ones and wedge ones to frozen ones and even tater tots. No matter what type of fries you use the ones that are on the crispy and not soggy side will work the best considering you are lathering it up with gravy.

3) Cooking the fries: I mentioned in the last point that the crispier, the better, as Poutine can be the tastiest when the fries are crispy on the outside and then a little soft and fluffy on the inside. If you make fries and they are on the softer side all the way around the gravy, and the cheese curds will make this more so and make for a dish that is a little on the soggy side with no crunch. If you are in a hurry or on a budget, frozen fries can be a great option, like many restaurants, cafes, and even McDonalds uses them so why can’t you?

4)The Cheese Factor: the best cheese to use when making Poutine is cheese curds that are on the squeaky side. However, if cheese curds are hard to find then you can also use mozzarella cheese, but the flavour will be different. Just like adding things to a Poutine dish you can use different cheeses from brie and Swiss to cheddar and gouda it is all up to you. However, the easier the cheese melts, the better it will be for this classic Canadian dish.

5) Have your additions ready: Before the main preparation for Poutine get your additions ready before adding the gravy. If you want bacon or ham make sure you have it ready for the final step. Have some onions or another veggie you want to throw in? Have it chopped, so they are ready to throw in when it is gravy time.

6) The Gravy is the last hill to climb:
Ok, so adding gravy to a dish is not really a hill to climb, but when making Poutine it is the last step. Heat up the gravy, so it is hot enough to melt the cheese. You want to melt the cheese and mix in with the fries, or anything else you may add, without all if it going to the bottom of the dish. Never add the gravy first, as the fries, cheese, and the gravy should be added to make it a more balanced dish to enhance the flavours. Just know that no matter what you put in your Poutine the gravy is the last thing to put on top.

Top Tasty Canadian Dishes

Canada has their fair share of great cuisine from sweet and salty dishes to their version of the Bloody Mary in the Caesar. Here are some of the top tasty Canadian dishes from Canada.

Poutine


Poutine is a dish with origins in French Canada and has become known as the countries signature dish. It made up of peppery meat gravy smothered on top of cheese curds and French fries. The famous side dish was thought to be invented in 1950, and several small towns in Quebec claim to have invented the dish. You will find Poutine at most restaurants in Canada, and they even have it on the menu at McDonald’s.

Canadian Bacon

Canadian Bacon is known in Canada as pea-meal bacon but called Canadian Bacon in the rest of the world. This type of bacon comes from lean pork loin that has not only been brined but also rolled in cornmeal as well. This is different than typical bacon, which comes from the belly of a pig. Around 1900 pork was exported from Canada to England and to preserve the meat on the voyage it was rolled in yellow peas, but now it is rolled in cornmeal.

Split Pea Soup


Split Pea Soup has an interesting story as for 400th anniversary of the travels of French explorer Samuel de Champlain chef Marc Miron was interested in what the early explorers ate in their new land. Back in the day, the explorers would use things that could last on a long journey such as cured meats and dried peas. Vegetables were added and out came split pea soup, which is still very popular these days not only around Canada but in the United States as well.

Tourtière

Tourtière is a French-Canadian dish that dates back hundreds of years. It is a flaky pie, and the name of Tourtière is thought to be derived from the ship that it was made in. Usually, the pie has ground meat, herbs and spices, and potatoes. Different kinds of meat can be used to make the dish, and on the coastal regions, some will even use fish. Tourtière is very popular during the holiday season.

BeaverTails

BeaverTails are basically a doughnut that does not have a hole and has been flattened. This is a very popular Canadian treat, and while invented by Graham Hooker’s family, who had the recipe for decades it was not introduced to the public until the late 1970’s. In 1979 Hooker opened the first BeaverTails outlet in Ottawa. The tasty treat can be topped with several things such as sugar and Nutella.

Butter Tarts

Butter Tarts are very rich and sweet and very popular throughout Canada. The origins of the tar-tar thought to be around 1900, and it is a delicate tart that crumbles easily and has a cream filled centre of butter, sugar, and eggs. Many places that serve butter tart also add raisins, and you can find them at most bakeries and coffee shops.

Caesar

The Caesar is the one drink on the list and was invented in 1969 in Calgary by restaurant manager Walter Chell. It is kind of like a Bloody Mary, as the ingredients are vodka, a salt rim, Worchester sauce, and Clamato juice. Motts is the company that makes Clamato, and they have claimed that Canada makes in excess of 350-million Caesars annually.

Gourmet Cuisine – A Breakfast for Kings

Forget gourmet cuisine, Michelin-star food adventures. Forget about being served a few carrot strips with a bisque and pumpkin flavored ice cream, all for the not-too-paltry sum of a couple of hundred notes. There are greasy food adventures to be had. Most Brits love a traditional English breakfast. In fact, the Full English is one of the most popular breakfasts in the world. As it spreads across the globe, largely via expats and hotels/restaurants catering to expats, the Full English Breakfast is also becoming the focal point for a lot of health nuts. Health experts are telling Brits what they should and shouldn’t eat for breakfast, and how much of it to eat. The owners of greasy spoons up and down the country aren’t paying any attention to that, though. In fact, the Full-Full-Full English is now one of many food adventures that die-hard fans of this breakfast can now enjoy.

What’s in a Full English?

Lacking a proper name, what we call the Full-Full-Full English is a monster meal. Enough food for 2 or 3 days (sometimes more), these behemoth breakfasts are seen as more of a challenge and competition than a true food binge. So, what is the challenge and what kind of adventure are you likely to have taking it on?

For starters, the average Full English will have a few rashers of bacon, a couple of sausages, a fried egg (or two), hash browns, mushrooms, baked beans, toast, fried tomatoes, and possibly some black pudding (blood sausage) if you’re so inclined, typically costing under a tenner. Not bad for a breakfast worth over 1,500 calories. This hearty meal should see you through most of the weekend, which is when Brits tend to eat it. However, the Big Breakfast has now become the focus of many restaurants who aim to fill their tables with eager and food-loving competitors who swear they can take down a monster.

The Breakfast Adventure

There are many restaurants across the UK which will hand you a spot on their Wall of Fame and possibly the chance to eat for free, if you can finish their own take on the Full English. Before you think that this sounds easy, though, have a listen to this…

Four slices of fried toast, four large eggs, six pork or beef sausages, six strips of bacon, hash browns, slices of black pudding, baked beans, mushrooms and fried tomatoes. Britain’s Biggest Breakfast. The cost, £20, and the venue? The Wonder Café in Hillingdon, near London. If you can eat the whole lot in 45 minutes, it’s yours on the house.

Believe it or not, it has been done – once. Emma “the Human Hoover” Dalton managed to wolf down the 4,000-calorie behemoth live on This Morning, in a cool, calm and collected twenty-one minutes and thirty-four seconds.

Other venues offer similar challenges up and down the country. There is even a 9,000-calorie beast known as The Monster available in Rochdale’s Castle Café, although admittedly that offers up burgers and chips/fries, too.

Whilst many doctors will tell you to forget about this food adventure, it is something that many people find fascinating. Why stuff your face with red-hot chilis and spicy sauces in competitions, when you can eat your favorite breakfast (possibly for free) in one of Britain’s most loved and delicious food adventures?

Top Five Must Have Sandwiches

 

The joy of finding the perfect sandwich is one that makes your taste buds come alive with pleasure and delight. There have been many a wonderful culinary creation that fits the bill when it comes to sandwiches and many that quickly become staples in the thousands of sandwich shops that are found in cities, towns and tourist locations.

To honour these tasty creations, we thought a list of our top five must have sandwiches might be just what the doctor ordered.

French dip


The French Dip is an infamous delight of thinly sliced ribeye streak created in Los Angeles in the early 20th century. It has become a staple for many restaurants and sandwich shops throughout the U.S and Canada.

The best part to the French Dip is its au jus, a wonderful blend that adds flavour and pleasure as you engulf mouthful after mouthful of tender beef housing in a banquette style bun – a must have for any sandwich lover.

Philly Cheesesteak

Ahh yes, the Philly Cheesesteak, made famous in Philadelphia, it makes our list and the list of many others who love a well-constructed and hearty sandwich. In its short 20 year history, the Philly offers steak lovers a sandwich made for kings with a blend of cheese and other delectable toppings such as onions and mushrooms. Served most often on a toasted sub roll, it is heated to gooey perfection and is known for its heartiness.

Po-boy


The Po-boy was first invented back in 1929 during a streetcar strike. It got its name as a result of its creators calling it the “poor boys” sandwich. It is a wonderful concoction that can see its fillings spanning shrimp, oysters, steak and other tasty delights. Adding to it comes tomatoes, pickles, lettuce, special sauces, mayo and a large 24-inch roll.

Reuben


The Reuben has long been a favourite for many people, and rightfully so. It is a tasty mix of corned beef, sauerkraut and swiss cheese with Russian dressing and served on rye bread.

It is not hard to find a local restaurant or sandwich shop offering the Reuben as a staple in their menu. It can be found in a number of different varieties when it comes to the bread used to house this tasteful joy, but the basics always remain the same. If you have yet to try one, you are missing out!

Grilled Cheese

The grilled cheese is an American tradition that has crossed oceans and seen it become sandwich creators for producing art to a culinary canvas. Served between two slices of bread, it traditionally is offered with cheddar cheese and served with a side of tomato soup.

Yet, for those with a taste of flair, the grilled cheese has a taken on many a creation with other goodies added to its cheesy filling, whether that being multiple cheese varieties or created using gourmet ingredients to make it something special. Either way, you look at, the grilled cheese brings back memories from our school days when Mom would make it for lunch, or when in need of some comfort food, the grilled cheese simply can’t be beaten!