Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday night scene

Tonight on my way home from work I remembered that there is a food truck night-- locally referred to as Moveable Feast-- at the Curtner light rail station. A bunch of gourmet/street-food trucks get together and sell every kind of food you could want....

....from sushi, to shrimp, to burritos, to curry, to ice cream, to espresso drinks, to sandwiches of all kinds... and tater tots and french fries. Not just any fries, though. Sometimes there is also a poutine food truck.

I went to Moveable Feast last week looking for Little Chef, but it was not there. Luckily this time it was! My coworkers rave about poutine, so I thought it was about time I tried it, especially because I have two fantastic friends in Canada-- you, Meesh, and also my other friend Christian in Vancouver. :)

What is poutine, the uninitiated may ask? Well....

"A dish of french fries topped with cheese curds and gravy. Origin: 1980s, Canadian French, either from French pouding "pudding" or directly from PUDDING."

Now, I don't really get the "pudding" part, but a lot of different countries have different ways of defining pudding....

Anyway, this was what I got to enjoy: the classic poutine with gravy and cheese curds. They also had poutines with shredded short-ribs or duck confit.

It was quite delicious, with a delicately flavored gravy to enjoy with every bite and the perfectly melty cheese curds to enhance it even more. Add a gourmet banana white chocolate and snickerdoodle ice cream cookie sandwich and it was a lovely Friday night meal.

I think I'll start going to Moveable Feast more often! It's really a pretty nice little setup. They put out these red buckets for people to sit on as they eat, and they play music, and if it's cold out, they put out space heaters or bonfires.

Stay tuned to hear about my visit to San Francisco tomorrow :).


  1. Heh Jen!
    You’re familiar with “poutine”… KEWL! Here in Canada, all of the fast food chains have poutine as part of the menu…that goes for Burger King, KFC, Wendys, Harveys, etc.

    Many eastern USA states fast food chains have adopted this part of the menu within their chains. Wonder if Al has had these? Anyways here’s more pics of Poutine ----> Very fattening, but yummy! When you order French fries with your burger, you can pay a bit extra and have “poutines”….

    Now, you don’t get the pudding part?! Don’t feel badly because the dish “poutiness” goes further back than today’s Fast Food version. As a kid (French Canadian families) referred to poutiness unlike the French Fries/curds/gravy…. but what is commonly referred to as “chicken and dumplings” which is a type of pudding right? These dumplings were flat though…that’s within my family’s recipe.

    This is what we often had for Sunday dinner “des poutines” Our (then called) poutiness are now referred to “sliders” I think some Québec restaurant introduced it in a French fry version (here’s an interesting version of the story)-----> Prior to that, poutine had been around for years and years as what I referenced to.

    Each family has their own way to make these sliders… Today, should you come to my family get-together Christmas dinner….this would be one of the entrées (not the French fry version) we still call them “poutines”.

    Want to hear something funny?!

    A few years ago (1991?) George W. Bush had gotten into trouble over not really knowing about Canada and who our Prime Minister was.

    After a rally in Canton, Michigan… Rick Mercer, posing as a CBC reporter ( Canadian television reporter) told Mr. Bush that Canadian Prime Minister Jean” Poutine” had endorsed him for his presidential run. Bush beamed and responded excitedly to the endorsement…

    Unfortunately for President Bush, our prime minister was Jean Chrétien, and not Poutine. LOL

    By the way, Mercer often lampoons American little knowledge of Canadian culture and politics. Hahaha, he had the governor of Arkansas convinced that Canada was building an igloo to protect its parliament building. Oh well, I keep saying this is Canada’s fault because we do not promote ourselves properly.

    I love the diversity of your posts Jen…thanks for this one! Have a wonderful weekend my friend!

    1. Jen about my version of what was once called, "poutines"...(in my family we still do call them that) is also known as a flat type of American dumplings. It's said that the American dish originated with our French canuck one, during the Great Depression.It was very inexpensive to make.

      Another international variation is Chinese Chicken Wonton Soup. Wontons are dumplings... or your Chicken Soup with Matzah Balls... I guess what I was saying the name "poutine" here in Canada has evolved...

    2. Thanks for sharing more fun links & pictures, Meesh :). Very interesting. I would be curious to see what a more traditional, non-french fry version of poutine would look like. I can kind of understand how one could connect "poutine" and "pudding"-- gravy can kind of have a pudding-like texture, and chicken and dumplings are almost more sauce/gravy predominant than the dumplings and other vegetables/meat that may be included.

    3. I also love wonton soup and matzo ball soup, it's funny how so many different foods around the world can be connected to poutine :)

  2. Jen,
    Do you mean a photo of what my family's version of poutine look like... As I mentioned above, we called them "poutines" or "pâtes" but in reality the dish is now known as sliders... Someone at AllRecipes has a picture here---> However we do not mix the chicken in or veggies in…. that looks like a stew in that pic.

    The chicken is served on the side. Sliders resemble ravioli squares (sort of) the pasta is cut with a pizza cutter and dropped in the clear boiling chicken broth.... Upon simmering the gravy part becomes the same colour (whitish) as the photo above. It looks like cream of chicken soup. The meal is inexpensive, and like your matzo ball soup known as an ultimate comfort meal.

    You are correct, the gravy concoction with whatever is somewhat considered a type of pudding or poutine. There ya go!

    This Moveable Feast- is such a wonderful idea! Everything under the sun….from sushi, to shrimp, to burritos, to curry, to ice cream, to espresso drinks, to sandwiches of all kinds….that covers so much territory! (I can hear Al asking about a hot dog vendor. Ya got to love him eh?! =) )

    When reading your post I took a double-take …I thought at first that you had written curry ice cream…LOL But you know what? I have had “garlic ice cream” of all things…that’s another story. Anyway this Little Chef Truck looks wonderful! What a great website too! The red buckets and music sounds fun too! Now I am eager to know about your visit to San Francisco Jen!

    1. Oh I see, that does sound quite delicious! Maybe I'll try to make it sometime. I don't think there were hot dogs at the Moveable Feast the last couple times I went... but they have some different trucks every time I have been, so I would not be surprised to see a hot dog food truck. Haha, curry ice cream would indeed be strange, but I've heard of a few savory type ice creams.. garlic ice cream, pistachio ice cream.. so you never know.

  3. Good morning/Bonjour!

    Interesting to learn that tater tots are served as far away as California. Some of the local diners serve them at breakfast--nice touch.
    Bring on the poutine! Sounds mmm, mmm good. Seem to develop hunger pangs with each visit.

    Caught a glimpse of the sports report on my way out this morning. The scene captured the San Francisco Giants winning the National League championship in front of their hometown fans...noted evidence of heavy rainfall, so safe travels if your trip to SF is still on. Same to you, Meesh, when you venture out as well in your beloved Canada.

    Back on Thursday mi amigo & mon ami to read more, and possibly learn what Jen's Halloween costume will be...enjoy your day :)

    1. Yes, Al, tater tots aren't really served in restaurants over here in California... but a couple of the trucks had them, and San Jose is a very multicultural city. People come from all over the world and live here. :)

      In California we've also got this chain called Weinerschnitzel. Maybe you have it too. It's fast food, mainly hot dogs. I was there tonight and they have about 12 different kinds of hot dogs. I got the pastrami sandwich. I'd give it a C--- I've had better. But, yay for 12 different kinds of hot dogs :).

      My trip to San Francisco last weekend was fine, it did not rain. It was just quite cold and foggy in the morning, but that's alright. I am deciding my costume this weekend... will try to get my next post done sometime this weekend too :)

    2. Buenos dias, Jen! Allo Meesh!

      All this talk about baseball and hotdogs, plus the weather lady's promise of sunny skies with temps soaring into the mid 70's today, has me on the verge of breaking out in a rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame"...

      If you do get a chance to go to a game, Jen, bundle up nicely this time of the year. All I can think of is a delicious hotdog with the works, and either a Pepsi or hot chocolate, depending upon how windy it is. Toss in the thunderous ovations/roar from the screaming crowd, and,oh, what an experience! A natural high.

      So, the suspense builds about what you are wearing for your office Halloween theme party...back next week to find out what you chose...cannot wait to find out. Am looking forward to your new post. Enjoy your day. Safe weekend wishes you guys.

    3. Yes, my housemate mentioned we might go in April when the Giants are supposed to play again, because I think they're almost done this time around... and April it will also be a bit chilly. I am sure it would be a fantastic experience, especially with my housemate because he loves baseball. He has been watching every game.

      Have a great weekend Al! :)

  4. Howdy Jen and nice to see Alan, allo mon ami!

    Well the buzz here in Canada... (World Series fever) some of the games will be played 50 miles away from me. In Windsor Ontario (at the border)- they're putting up banners in honour of the Tigers... the cost $10,000!
    Oh well, I have decided because of you Jen, I am rooting for SanFrancisco Giants, so there!

    It is a sunny day, here's hoping the both of you have a fabulous weekend...and much sunshine, if not possible due to Mother Nature than hopefully in your hearts. Stay safe!

    1. Oh I almost forgot to fill you in on the "poutine" war at our fast foods...Burger King is currently winning by introducing 2 new flavours...

      I have tried the bacon flavour, they're OK I guess.. I am not a big fan of jalapeno peppers, so I haven't tried the ANGRY poutines. My favourite french fry poutines is KFC (I love KFC's gravy 'cause it's not too salty) You should see they come in a small KFC cute!
      Now, check out NewYork Fries what a presentation and they are soooooo yummy!

    2. It's remarkable to me how many people around here are into baseball, Meesh-- specifically, the Giants. I might actually try to catch a game myself, even if it's just on television... but maybe someday I will go to a real game. :)

  5. New York Fries' poutine does indeed look tasty. I would choose a classic poutine above the others as well. It is so fascinating to see pictures of different kinds of fast food regionally. :)

  6. Hello guys!
    Hope the both of you are doing well… Hurricane Sandy is on its way to hit the eastern coast, stay safe Al!
    Jen, I am curious, when Al said:” Jen, bundle up nicely this time of the year.”…. Tell me, if one should be in San Francisco for the World Series games; what type of weather could be expected in your neck of the woods (for the month of November…) What do you classify as cool/cold weather?

    It is true, where one assumes because a place is geographically situated- weather is all the same … For example the myth or misinformation that “all” Canadian areas have lots and lots of snow and ice ( or the same amount) throughout winter is just not so….

    Is “Sunny” California one of these examples…where one would assume each location is hot and sunny, 365days a year? Do you have much effect throughout the seasons? If not than what would be considered as a dip in the weather? I love to learn more about your milieu.

    Well, Jen you should be proud of your Giants because so far they have won two games against the Detroit Tigers… Now Detroit will be hosting the next games over the weekend. Where I live, (not far from Detroit) the forecast calls for rain…we will see if there are any rain outs.

    1. Well, Meesh, for this coming week the weather in San Francisco will be highs in the low to mid 70s and lows in the mid 50s. So not too cold but it can get rather foggy over there, especially in the morning and probably at night. The weather over here in San Jose is going to be much the same except without the fogginess. Over here and there I expect it to get colder in November. Still we may have some warm days. "Cold" for me, for California weather, would be anything below the mid 60s... but I have also been in way colder weather, like Virginia in January, where it was 20 degrees and lower. That was freezing. CA in general is not hot and sunny all the time but a lot of areas in CA have fairly nice weather. I don't even really see a difference between the Central Coast (where I used to live) and here in Northern California, even though they are 215 miles apart. So it depends on the terrain. In the mountains of CA it snows, but as a state we don't get a lot of snow. I'd say at least between the Central Coast and Northern CA the average daytime temperatures are between the 60s and 70s.

      Everyone has been really happy about the Giants, I am glad they are doing so well. :)

    2. Howdy!
      Jen, first of all your San Francisco Giants won World Series Game 3 in Motown yesterday… WooHoo!

      Thanks for the explanation of your weather in San Jose as well as in San Francisco…Here it’s getting colder and colder.

      Right now it’s not bad, 41°F, it’s supposed to get worse tomorrow, as we should be feeling the effects of hurricane Sandy. So far, we are fortunate because we are outside its path… Once again here’s hoping Alan is safe.

      Now how we distinguish the change of the seasons is of course the temperature… As I can tell, the same goes with you. Do you also “see” any changes? For example, I only need to look up at the trees, where the leaves have changed in colours… The trees’ leaves are also falling….I can see many squirrels’ nests. (Good news, this year none with my lawnchair pads LOL)
      In the last few weeks I can hear and see the Canadian geese seasonal migration….

      You just have to look up and you see their V-shaped flight formation flying over…it’s amazing, the precision as you see them up above. I have read that the front position is rotated since flying in front consumes the most energy, they take their turns. Isn’t nature amazing?!

      The Canadian geese are heading to your southern/warmer states…but here where I live for some crazy reason we have the scavengers, big black crows spending the winter here. I guess because I am situated by the Great Lakes, these crows have a feast in the urban areas. This morning I was awaken by their loud cawing – yep, they are looking for breakfast. These crows will be throughout the winter :sigh::::

      Anyway, I thought I would stop in to say hello… I’m off to plan my day! Talk later guys!

    3. Her's a Youtube of what can be seen here... the Canadian Geese migrating. A bit of information too ----->
      Now the sound effects are off, to me you barely can hear the distinct honking of the geese. What follows the geese are usually the cloud of black crows, that cawing sound, I believe is crows. I hear that annoying sound all of the time.

    4. arghh typo "Her's" should be---> "Here's" LOL

    5. Yep, the Giants won.. the whole bay area is celebrating, wearing their Giants gear. The teachers of the 4th grade classes at the school where my students come from didn't give their kids any homework, because the Giants won.

      That is really fascinating about the geese. Over here it doesn't really feel or look like fall. The leaves are still green. Seasons are definitely less visible in CA, but it's definitely colder once you get into maybe mid-November, December, January, February, March, April.... starts getting warmer maybe May or June.. then it's hot and cool/cold off and on, until mid-November again. Of course, this is somewhat of an approximation, but it's rather dreary to have such cold months in the beginning of the year in cold, rainy winter/spring, with hardly any holidays to celebrate to distract one from the weather. Also sometimes difficult to feel in the spirit of Fall when the weather decided to be 80 degrees, haha.

  7. Buenos dias/Bonjour!

    Hope this message finds mi amigo and mon ami safe and sound. How 'bout them Giants! Hopefully the Yankees will reign again someday. A new post is up as promised--woohoo! Am scrolling up...

  8. He’s b-a-a-a-c-k! !!

    Jen, I betcha you’re proud of your SF Giants! At the start of the season, the odds on the Tigers winning the World Series were 8-1...meanwhile the odds your Giants winning the team's second World Series in three years were even longer at 18-1. They showed them eh?! More fun facts here---->

    C’mon now Al...the Yankees reign again someday? What about my Blue Jays...afterall your Yankees have won 26 World Series, the most of ANY team... Can’t blame yoou for loving those Yankees though...