Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

Take sweet potato fries, add some pimento cheese and top it all with andouille gravy—that’s southern poutine.

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Last night, as I pinned a recipe for pimento cheese stuffed chicken and yet another recipe for pimento cheese (that makes seven now), I remembered a recipe featuring pimento cheese that I’ve wanted to post here on Gusto. I call it Southern Poutine.

The original recipe for Sweet Potato Fries with Andouille Gravy and Pimento Cheese was developed by Lauren Grier for her Climbing Grier Mountain blog. I like her blog’s tagline: “Moguls. Meals. Misadventures.” Now, I’m thinking about three words to describe Gusto, and seeing how I love alliteration, they all have to begin with the same letter. Hmm.

I only made one minor change to her recipe: since I have a pot of chives out on the deck, I snipped some and sprinkled the dish with about a tablespoon of them. I also recall adding more pimento cheese than I was supposed to, it’s hard to resist.

If you can’t find andouille, you could substitute another spicy sausage like chorizo or linguica. I learned recently that a Kroger’s in the next town sells linguica so now I have a few packages in my freezer. Woohoo!

So what the heck is poutine, you ask? It’s a French-Canadian dish of French fries and cheese curds smothered with beef gravy. I’ve only had poutine once in my life while attending an ASAE conference in Toronto. My friend Sandra and I went to the Fairmont’s bar for a drink and a snack and got ourselves some fancy pants poutine. I don’t recall the exact ingredients but I’m sure poutine purists would not have approved. However, they would have loved it despite themselves.

sweet potato fries w pimento cheese and andouille gravy - southern poutine

Southern Poutine aka Sweet Potato Fries with Andouille Gravy and Pimento Cheese

You’ll need a baking sheet and medium skillet.

  • 1 package (around 20 ounces) of frozen sweet potato fries
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup diced andouille sausage (or spicy sausage like linguica or chorizo)
  • 1/3 cup diced bell pepper (green, red, yellow or orange)
  • 1/3 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • Hot sauce, salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup pimento cheese, room temperature
  • Green onions or chives, chopped

Preheat the oven to 425. Spread out the fries on a baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes—or 5 minutes less than the package directions.

Meanwhile, make the gravy. In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the sausage and cook for 2 minutes. Add the bell pepper and onion with a dash of salt. Cook until nearly softened. Add the garlic. Cook for another minute or until it starts to golden. If you won’t be standing over the stove while the garlic cooks, turn the heat down to low so it doesn’t burn.

Stir the flour into the andouille/pepper mixture. Cook for a few minutes over medium hit, stirring every now and then. It’s okay if it darkens a bit. Stir in the chicken broth. Scrape up anything that’s stuck to the bottom of the pan. Bring the sauce to a simmer and stir until the gravy has thickened and reduced. Season to taste with hot sauce (if you like it really spicy), salt and pepper.

Back to the fries—when they’re done, remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle the gravy evenly over the fries. It won’t be pretty but who cares. Next, spoon bits of pimento cheese over the fries. Then, sprinkle the green onions over everything. Place the pan back in the oven for another 5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

This dish is best when it’s warm from the oven, but even the soggy leftovers are good when warmed up in the oven or toaster oven.

Original recipe: Sweet Potato Fries with Andouille Gravy and Pimento Cheese, Climbing Grier Mountain

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1 year ago on Gusto: Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Mushrooms and Red Bell Pepper

2 years ago: Kohlrabi Parmesan

3 years ago: Sweet Potato and Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

4 years ago: Flounder with Spiced Breadcrumb Topping

5 years ago: Tuna Noodle Casserole

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3 thoughts on “Southern Poutine

  1. Looks like a great take on poutine.

    1. deirdrereid says:

      Thanks. It was definitely tasty!

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