Saturday, April 26, 2014

The Poor Student's Search For Poutine in Boston

In case it's not abundantly obvious, the Poor Student is Canadian. One of Canada's contributions to the world in the culinary world is poutine, which consists of freshly cut fries, squeaky cheese curds, and gravy (preferably made from scratch). In Boston, even putting gravy on your fries is considered strange. Growing up in Toronto, fries with gravy was a something to be had at least once or twice a week in the school cafeteria. The cheese curds were an addition thought up by the French-Canadians in Quebec, where good food is a religion. If you're ever in Montreal, make sure you stop by La Banquise or if you're on a tight budget, La Belle Province for some authentically awesome poutine.

In Boston, there are at least three places where poutine is available: Saus (near Union Oyster House), Grass Fed (in Jamaica Plain), and All Star Sandwich (in Cambridge). Romano's in Roslindale has a version of poutine but they don't use cheese curds and they add bits of steak to it. Not bad though. Actually, Grass Fed didn't use curds either. The last time I tried to find cheese curds at a grocery store, I was unsuccessful. The lady at Roche Brothers in West Roxbury told me that they have 10-pound bags of curds and they use that to make their fresh mozzarella. I just could't imagine how I would use a 10-pound bag of curds!

Saus specializes in Belgian street food place and if you've ever been to Belgium, you'll know that they're famous for fries. Moule et frites (mussels and fries) is a very popular dish there. If you get fries on their own, they are usually served in a paper cone, which is what Saus does too. However, if you get the poutine, it's not served in a cone because that would be outrageously messy. The cheese curds are actually curds and the gravy is pretty tasty. Since they serve beer, you might as well have a beer with the poutine.

I haven't tried the poutine at All Star yet, so if anyone has, please leave a comment and let us know how it is!

For more places to find poutine, check out CBS's page:

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