hugh grant ate here

April 2nd, 2012

Finding a restaurant in Paris that offers good food is the easy part.  Finding a restaurant that offers good food on a table that is sized sufficiently to hold said good food is the challenge. An eighteen-inch round top cannot support two plates of omelets, two pots of hot chocolate and a shared side of fries.  The only place left to put the breadbasket is atop one’s head.

One restaurant that deviates from the tiny table syndrome and offers superb food is L’Entrecôte Porte-Maillot in the 17th arrondissement, where three generations of family Godillot have rocked the city with their take on steak-frites, which is the only entrée they serve. A simple salad of lettuce and walnuts dressed in a mustard vinaigrette precedes the entrée and guests can then choose between a small selection of desserts.

When we were there last, Hugh Grant came in with a party of eight.  I watched him from the corner of my eye, heart a-twitter, and was somewhat struck that his table was left completely free of autograph hounds and camera snappers.  It was only when his dinner was finished and he strolled towards the door that every head in the dining room slowly turned to observe his exit.

Although I can’t get the contre-filet cut of sirloin used at L’Entrecote, a thick rib eye does the trick nicely, and in keeping with healthy food combining, the frites are usually replaced by a grilled green vegetable or a Baked Tomato Boursin.  Happy memories of a Parisian meal; superbly executed, on a table big enough to hold it all.

Rib-Eye Persillade and Baked Tomato Boursin

Related Recipes

Baked Tomatoes Boursin

For four servings:

  • 4 ripe tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons Boursin Herb Cheese
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut a slice from the bottom and top of each tomato.  Make a conical cut to the tomato top, sufficient to hold the cheese.  Season both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat a medium cast iron skillet over medium heat and add butter and oil.  When hot, fry both sides of the tomato until lightly caramelized.  Divide cheese amongst the tomatoes and bake for 15-20 minutes.

Rib-Eye Steaks Persillade

Persillade is a simple combination of parsley and garlic.  For steaks, I mix the Persillade with unsalted butter and top the cooked steaks with the mixture just prior to serving.

For four servings:

  • 4 rib-eye steaks, preferably on the thick side
  • ½ cup chopped parsley, packed
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • sea salt
  • freshly cracked pepper

Thoroughly mix the butter, parsley and garlic.  Scoop mixture onto a piece of plastic wrap and shape the butter into a log.  Secure wrapping and refrigerate until ready to use.

Liberally season the rib-eyes with salt and pepper.  Grill, broil or pan roast to desired degree of doneness.  Cover lightly with foil and allow to rest for 5-8 minutes.  When ready to serve, top steaks with a generous slice of the Persillade Butter.

Copyright © Katherine Stetson, all rights reserved.