This week’s New Yorker (the food issue) features a piece by Calvin Trillin poking fun at “Quebec’s Funniest Food,” which is, of course, poutine.
I am not a big fan of defining a people by the food they eat, let alone mocking them, but poutine seems to make Americans laugh the way we all really should be laughing at bacon double cheeseburgers.
Let’s give Canada the last laugh this time with a recipe that takes poutine from the ridiculous (admit it, cheese curds and gravy on French fries is a bit funny) to the sublime.
I first tasted this poutine about two years ago at an Ottawa restaurant run by a family originally from Newfoundland. Matching lobster and mascarpone cheese makes this a rich and delicious dish that easily crosses culinary borders.
From Petit Bill’s Bistro
1 live lobster
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1 cup lobster stock (simmer the lobster shell and spare bits in a pot of water for an hour or so to make a quick stock)
1 pound (475-g) mascarpone cheese
1 cup 35-per-cent cream
2 cloves minced garlic
Salt and pepper, to taste
11/2 pounds French fries.
In a large pot of boiling, salted water boil live lobster 8 to 10 minutes.Remove lobster from water, cool, then remove all tail, claw and arm meat. Cut meat into small bite-size pieces and set aside.
In a saucepan on medium heat, melt butter, then add stock, mascarpone, cream and garlic. Whisk together and reduce temperature to low; simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in lobster meat, season to taste with salt and pepper, and pour over fries to serve.