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Oh Canada May 13, 2011

Posted by Peeps in Business, Cooking, Food, Information, random stuff, Rochester.

This is my friend Liz.
She works with me a couple days a week at The Ravioli Shop. She’s way more fun than Boss, and we make a pretty good team.
Liz is a major foodie. We spend a lot of time talking about cooking and techniques. She has several part time jobs in various capacities in the food business. Every so often, I bring her samples of stuff we’ve either just tried, or that we love to make over and over again, and she either really likes our food, or is incredibly polite.
But in addition to her seemingly dozen or so jobs, she recently started her own small business. She bought a food truck and now has a space at the Public Market making poutine.
I had never heard of poutine, and promptly told her so. She explained that it’s a traditional French-Canadian dish, consisting of french fries, fresh cheese curds and gravy.
Now, please remember that I am from New Jersey. French fries with brown gravy are a late night diner staple. Cheese fries are a very close second. And while I will cheerfully eat either of these, the thought of combining them never once crossed my mind. And the sad part is, that I can’t for the life of me think of why.
She does every one fresh to order. She cuts the potatoes in the truck and fries them fresh. The gravy is made every day the Market is open.
The cheese curds and as many ingredients she can manage come from local places.
I showed up for Liz’s grand opening, and had poutine for the first time. It was fabulous. The fries were hot and perfect. The cheese was only just starting to melt, so there was a contrast of textures. The gravy was better than I’ve ever managed to accomplish. She adds a small pinch of fresh thyme on top, which is apparently not traditional. Okay, I’m good. I’d eat this again in a heartbeat.
For now, the menu is very limited. And that’s fine. Doing a couple things really well is better than doing a bunch of things poorly.
After her opening day, I mentioned that both my wife and I thought that a poached egg would go nicely on top of this dish. She replied that she was planning on doing something like that in the future. With, perhaps, sausage gravy instead of her normal gravy. Dude! I am so all over that.
So, if you’re ever in Rochester, please try to make it a point to go see my friend Liz at the Market. If she’s not too busy, mention my name and chat with her. Then enjoy one of the greatest snacks I’ve ever had. I may have to stop making fun of Canada now. Well, I’ll try.


1. mazco - May 13, 2011

Remember years ago when I would go on vacation and send you a post card of some local food with the phrase, “Eat Me!” as the comment?
I sent one from Quebec City of Poutine with “Monge Moi” as the caption.
Then again, I barely remmember it.

Peeps - May 13, 2011

Honestly, I don’t remember it at all. But it doesn’t surprise me.

2. judy - May 14, 2011

This really does look good! Wish there were food trucks here. sigh

Judy, we don’t have many, either – yet. They seem to be popping up all over the country.

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