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These days, eating poutine is a Canadian right of passage. From fast-food to fine-dining poutine is a fan favourite amongst Canadians. However, it hasn’t always been this way, this spectacular Canadian treat didn't gain major popularity until the 20th century! The real question is, where does this tasty snack come from?
If you ask residents of Drummondville Quebec, they claim to be the originators of poutine. Like many great inventions, poutine was developed in stages. In the late 1950s, Jean-Paul Roy began serving a dish dubbed ‘patate-sauce’, aka fries topped with gravy at his drive-in restaurant, Le Roy Jucep. Later in 1964, Roy began adding cheese curds to his signature dish when he noticed customers were already doing so, naming it ‘Fromage-patate-sauce’; voila, the birth of poutine.
On the contrary, residents of Warwick Quebec believe they hold the title of inventing poutine. In 1957, Fernand Lachance of ‘Café Ideal first added cheese curds to fries at the request of his regular customer Eddy Lainesse. Before serving up the mixture in a paper bag, Fernand proclaimed “ca va te faire une maudite poutine!” or “that will make a damned mess!”. Despite Fernand’s original dismay, he soon came around to the popular new dish, serving it on plates to contain the mess left on his tables. By 1963, Fernand began adding gravy to the fries and cheese curds after customers complained of cold fries (what a fantastic solution!).
So, it seems the true origins of poutine are still up in the air. However, one thing is certain, this tasty Canadian treat has spread its love far past the borders of Quebec and even Canada. Who knew the simple combination of french fries, cheese curds, and gravy would make such an impression (way to go poutine)!
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