Tater Tot-Paillasson Poutine
If you’re unable to find Paillasson in the US (it can be elusive sans a Canadian connection), use a similarly textured grilling cheese such as queso fresco, halloumi, or juustoleipä instead. These cheeses melt only slightly, and should squeak when eaten—a critical element of true poutine.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 shallot finely chopped
- 1 small clove garlic finely chopped
- 4 cups beef stock
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon whole peppercorns optional
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Kosher salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- TO ASSEMBLE:
- 40 to 48 frozen tater tots cooked according to package directions
- 2 cups diced Paillasson cheese or a similar variety, see headnote
- 2 tablespoons chopped chives or parsley optional
Heat olive oil in a quart-size saucepan over medium. Add shallot and garlic and cook until translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in stock, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, and peppercorns (if using). Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
In another quart-size saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk to form a roux, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Cook roux until it begins to brown and turn fragrant, about 3 minutes. Slowly add stock mixture, whisking constantly. Lower heat and simmer about 20 minutes, stirring frequently, until gravy reduces by half. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Divide cooked tater tots equally among four bowls. Sprinkle with cheese. Pour gravy over top, distributing evenly. Garnish with parsley or chives, if desired. Serve hot.