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Haddock and Leek Fondue Crumble

27 Sep

Last Monday, I was looking for a nice place to have lunch with a friend I had not seen for years. As you know, many good places are closed on Monday to recover from the busy Saturdays and Sundays.
Convinced it would be closed too, I went on the website of the restaurant Le Petit Matieu. Luckily…. they are open on Mondays….
A friend of mine recommended the place because it is good, simple and warm but also because it has been opened by a former Gregoire Ferrandi student who runs the place by itself with another girl still learning in the same school.
There I was on Monday, the place was really busy, especially for a Monday and the Menu very simple…. 2 starters (Thin Tomato Tart or Cauliflower Soup), 2 mains (Veal “Blanquette” or Haddock and Leek Crumble), 1 dessert (Chocolate Chip Cookie) and at night, you have a A la Carte Menu with lots of products and wines from Corsica (the place the owner comes from)…
As I really don’t like the “Blanquette”, I choose the crumble even if the haddock is not my favorite fish…
Guess what, I loved it…. so much that I tried it during one of my Market Class.
We choose a great piece of smoked haddock at the Baudoyer Market, choose great leeks as well and used good white wine and cream of course….
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Here is the recipe:

Ingredients for the Leek Fondue:

  • 2 onions diced
  • 6-8 leeks washed and thinly sliced, green part cut off
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • 1 tbsp Cooking Olive Oil
  • Salt and freshly Ground Pepper
  • White Wine to deglaze (2 tbsp)
  • Cream or Milk and Cream used to poach the haddock

2-Leek Fondue Ingredients

Method:

In a pan, start to cook the onions with oil and butter until they get a nice golden color.
3-Oignons
Add the seasoned leek .
Once the water is evaporated and the leeks start to soften, deglaze with white wine.
Let it reduce and add 1/2 cup of cream or the poaching liquid of the haddock.
Let it simmer for another 6-8 minutes, taste and rectify the seasoning.
Set aside.
4-Leeks

Ingredients for the Crumble Mix:

  • 200g of butter diced and cold
  • 200g of flour
  • 100-150g of young Parmesan finely grated
  • Ground Pepper (no salt as Parmesan is salty already)
  • 150g of Breadcrumbs (Chapelure) if you wish a crunchier texture
  • Finely chopped aromatic herbs (optional)

1-Chapelure-BreadCrumbs

Method:

By hand or on a low speed with your Kitchen Aid, mix together all the ingredients until you obtain a crumbly mix ready to spread on top of your dish, keep in the fridge.
1-Crumble

Ingredients for the Haddock:

  • 1.5kg of Smoked Haddock
  • 1l of cream
  • 1l of milk
  • a bay leave

Method:

Pour the haddock in a large pan and cover with milk and cream, add a bay leave.
Bring the mix to a boil and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Set aside and let it cool down.
Remove the haddock from the pan and start to tear apart the flesh, get rid of the skin and bones.
5-Haddock
In a gratin dish, spread a layer of leek, add the haddock flakes on top and repeat the process until you have reach 1/2 to 2/3 of the dish.
Spread the crumble on top and cook in the oven 20-30 min at 200° C (about 350°F).
6-Assembling Crumble
The crumble is ready when the surface is golden brown and the crumble mix crunchy and soft at the same time but not raw in the middle.
8-Ready to Eat

Serve it with a generous salad and white wine.

Crumble Haddock-Fondue de Poireaux

 

Ingrédients pour la Fondue de Poireaux:

  • 2 oignons émincés
  • 6-8 poireaux lavés et émincés
  • 1 cas de beurre
  • 1 cas d’huile d’olive
  • Sel et Poivre du Moulin
  • 2 cas de vin blanc pour déglacer
  • De la crème liquide ou le liquide de pochage du haddock

Méthode:

Dans une grande poêle à fond épais, faites revenir les oignons dans de l’huile et du beurre jusqu’à ce qu’ils deviennent translucides et prennent une jolie couleur dorée.

Ajoutez les poireaux émincés et laisser les réduire jusqu’à évaporation de l’eau qu’ils contiennent.

Lorsque les poireaux sont tendres et commencent à dorer, déglacez au vin blanc puis ajoutez 10 cl de crème ou de liquide de pochage.

Faites réduire, ajustez l’assaisonnement et gardez de côté.

Ingrédients pour le Crumble:

  • 200g de beurre froid et coupé en dés
  • 200g de farine
  • 100-150g de Parmesan râpé
  • Poivre du Moulin (pas de Sel car le Parmesan est déjà très sale)
  • 150g de Chapelure pour donner une texture plus croustillante
  • Des herbes aromatiques finement émincées

Méthode:

Dans le bol de votre Kitchen Aid ou dans un grand saladier et à la main, mixez tous les ingrédients ensemble (à vitesse moyenne au Kitchen Aid) jusqu’à obtention d’une pâte friable.

Gardez-la au réfrigérateur jusqu’à utilisation.

 

Ingrédients pour le Haddock:

  • 1.5kg de Haddock fume
  • 1l de crème liquide
  • 1l de lait entier
  • 1 feuille de laurier

Méthode:

Placez le haddock dans une grande casserole remplie de crème et de lait. Ajoutez le laurier et porter à ébullition. Laissez frémir 4-5 minutes et laissez reposer.

Une fois refroidi, émiettez le haddock et jetez les arêtes et la peau.

Commencez le montage du crumble et préchauffez votre four à 180-200° C.

Dans un grand plat à gratin, étalez une généreuse couche de poireaux puis recouvrez de haddock et de nouveau de poireaux. Si le mix est un peu sec, ajoutez un peu de liquide de pochage.

Finissez en parsemant la surface d’une généreuse couche de crumble.

Faites cuire 20-30 minutes. Le crumble est prêt lorsque la surface a pris une jolie coloration dorée et que le crumble est cuit et croustillant. Il ne doit pas rester cru.

Servez tout de suite avec une généreuse salade verte bien assaisonnée.

 

 9-Result

 

Frenchie to Go…. simply yummy!

20 Sep

The Frenchie saga seems to be never ending and since I came back to France, I have been trying to go to any of there places without success! Lack of organization or place overcrowded!

Today, I got organized and told my friend Charles to be there at 12.20 to be sure to get a seat.

People don’t have lunch too early in this area…. arriving at 12.20 is almost like coming for breakfast!

The place is small but nice, simple but comfortable. High iron and wooden stools, same for the table. Open windows and very large kitchen with a good and silent extraction…. which means you do not smell like a fried sandwich when you leave the place!

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As the menu is short and simple, we made-up our choice pretty quickly…. a Reuben’s sandwich and a Lobster roll to start and a Cheesecake to share with our coffee!

It was simply delicious….

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The Lobster roll is in a very soft grilled brioche bun, the lobster (from Brittany) is perfectly cooked and dressed in a delicious butter sauce with celery. Of course, 22 euros is pretty expensive for a sandwich but it’s worth the price if it does not become your everyday habit.

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The Reuben’s sandwich was great too but very different. Closer to the street food that you expect when you go to Frenchie to Go.

The beetroot coleslaw is fresh and well dressed, the bread is well grilled and crispy and you have a lot of Pastrami, Bacon and Cheddar. Maybe the bacon was a bit too smoky for me and overpowered the Pastrami but in the end, we were both happy and satisfied.

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Was the Cheesecake the best part? I really don’t know but it was a delight for sure. Made with Brillat Savarin, Figs and Walnuts, it was really creamy with a citrus hint (orange zest?). The portion was not too big, just the perfect side to share with a coffee. The strawberry puree on top was a perfect balance as well and you know when you taste it that it’s an homemade puree.

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Of course, you also have lots of other treats and options but those were the one we choose and they made us happy.

Take the time to give it a try…. it’s really worth it and the service is fast, professional.  Also, unlike many places in Paris, the waiters and waitresses are genuinely smiling!

Also, we did not try them but they have a great range of Beers.

Frenchie to Go

5-6 rue du Nil

Paris 2eme

Metro: Sentier

Madame Shawn – Bistrot Thai…. great place to go for lunch

28 May

As my parents drove me back to Paris last week-end, we took the opportunity to go to Madame Shawn – Bistrot Thai, a Thai Restaurant located close to the Carreaux du Temple, 18 rue Cafarelli. I used to go there when I was still living in Paris 5 years ago and I wanted to share the address with my parents.

As it was freezing, we were not especially looking for a place on a terrace nor for fresh salad and cold drinks…. Jasmine Tea, rice and spices were just what we needed!

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Seated at very simple square bistrot tables decorated with a tiny flower bouquet we ordered our “lunch menu formule”. For 15 euros, you have a broad choice of starters, main and sides as well as drinks. Unfortunately, we were not hungry anymore to try the deserts even if the Tiramisu looked really great when I saw them being served on a table close to ours! Next time maybe?

In the meantime, let me share with you our pick of the day….

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Starters:

Kai Ping: Chicken Skewers with Peanut Sauce, the chicken was moist inside and crispy outside, the sauce had a real flavor of peanut and was slightly spicy.

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Pho Pia: Fried Chicken Rolls with a Sweet and Sour Sauce, smaller than the rolls you buy in any Asian take-away or cheap restaurant, those rolls are very fresh and release a lot of flavor. They are not too greasy but just crispy enough. Really great to share as a starter!

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Som Tam: Spicy Green Papaya Salad, yummy and fresh…. Just the way I like it. The dressing is not too spicy and there is just enough peanuts crumbs on top. The carrots and green papaya are still crunchy and the portion is just what’s needed for a starter.

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Mains:

Madame Shawn Bobun…. one of the restaurant specialties: usually, a Bo Bun is a whole meal in itself…. you don’t need anything else to go with it. You have thinly sliced beef, fresh crispy vegetables and rice noodles covered with crunchy peanuts, fresh herbs and sliced spring rolls. Usually it comes with a tasty nuoc-man sauce to bring all the flavor together. At Madame Shawn, the Bo-Bun is almost served as a soup but still verty tasty. Not my favorite though.

For the best Bo Bun in Paris, here is a review: Best Bo Bun in Paris.

Among them is the restaurant Le Cambodge, 10 avenue Richerand in the 10th, by the Canal St Martin. I used to go there a lot and I promise you will love it for its freshness and great taste.

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Pla Pad Prik Keng: Wok Fish Filet with a Red Chili Sauce and Vegetables. The fish was tender, the sauce well balanced, neither too thick, nor too heavy. Just the right amount of red chilli paste. The vegetables were crispy enough and the fresh herbs brought a lot of flavor in addition to the sauce.

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As a side, my Dad had Pad Mi (Rice Noodles fried with vegetables) but he ended-up picking in my rice to finish the sauce of his fish…. Anyway, the rice noodles were really tasty too. Nicely sauteed with soy sauce and fresh vegetables and covered with finely chopped spring onions and herbs. Fresh and fulfilling at the same time.

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Kai Pad Mamuang Himmapan: Chicken Filets with Cashew Nuts When I am craving for Asian food, that’s one of my favorite dish…. with the Green Curry! The problem is that in many places, the chicken is often dry or not well prepared and has lots of nerves that are not a good surprise when you take a bite. As you may guess, I was pleased this time…. first there was lots of cashew nuts maybe even too much but not for me! The sauce was light and tasty and really kept the chicken moist and tender. It was not loaded with onions either.

I had my chicken with Khao Hom Mali (Perfumed Rice), which is the perfect side to keep on enjoying the nice flavor of the sauce when you have finished the chicken!

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Now you may understand why we were not anymore hungry for dessert….

I have to say that Madame Shawn offers a really good bargain for lunch. I know it is more expensive at night but still worth it as the atmosphere is all different. And you can also go in the other locations they have in Paris were the atmosphere is not “Bistrot like” but more refined and sophisticated.

Madame Shawn – Bistrot Thai

18 Rue Caffarelli
75003 Paris
Ph: +33 (0)1 42 72 36 06

La Crêperie de Josselin: Tasty Yummy Cosy Old Fashion Crêperie

15 Apr

Yes indeed, La Crêperie de Josselin is not a highly trendy Crêperie…. It is lost among a dozen of other Crêperies Rue du Montparnasse in the South West of Paris and you really have to know that this is a good one to make-up your choice. You can also consider the queue waiting outside as a sign that this place is better than the other ones.

As I did not intend to go out that evening and as it was also raining, I did not even think about looking at the ratings on the internet or quickly glance at the other Crêperies of the street. For once I fully trusted my best friend Pierre-Henry…. If the place is neither trendy nor central…. it has to be good at least otherwise he would never go that far, especially when it’s raining and his scooter is out of order...

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About the queue outside…. Don’t be too scared, it goes really fast but you just have to choose friends that can be on time. As long as the whole group is not here, you will not get a table. That place might be old fashion but they learnt from some of the big ones…. You get in, you order, you eat and you leave…. It’s simply efficient! I started to be concerned about that as I like to have my own tempo and get frustrated if I feel pressure when I am looking for comfort.

Indeed, it was not that way. Once you are seated, you just have to relax. Yes, the place is busy and crowdy but you don’t have any loud music or pushy waiter to make you feel like you just want to grab something to eat and disappear.

The place is divided into dark wood boxes, you are seated on rustic benches at a cosy table. No candles but lamp covered with lampshades made of laces…. and suddenly it feels like holidays in Brittany, one of those rainy evening when you end-up in a traditional Crêperie to forget about the rain and look for comforting food.

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That’s exactly what you get at La Crêperie de Josselin…. The menu is simple and stick to the traditions…. Buckwheat “Galettes” filled with ham, cheese, eggs, onions…… you can ask for a green salad on the side if you want to. No rocket, mixed leaves or other fancy mix, just lettuce with French Dressing. And for dessert, just traditional pancakes called “Crêpe de Froment” with sugar, lemon, “caramel beurre sale”, Nutella, banana…. and a very simple selection of tasty ice-creams if you look for something lighter.

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Last but not least, you also have the traditional cider served in “bolées“, the traditional stoneware cups that replace glasses in Brittany. Sweet or “Brut”, it is lighter than the one you get in British pubs and is part of a traditional pancake evening.

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Once you have finished your pancakes and cider, whatever happened during the day, you just feel happy and nothing really matters anymore. You just enjoy being with good friends, catching-up in a warm cosy place while it’s raining outside.

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La Crêperie de Josselin

67 Rue du Montparnasse, 75014 Paris

+33 1 43 20 93 50

Closed on Monday

La Crêperie de Josselin… C’est BON tout simplement!

Non, La Crêperie de Josselin n’est pas THE place to be, non La Crêperie de Josselin n’est pas non plus l’avant-garde du moment côté culinaire, déco, emplacement ou service mais oui, La Crêperie de Josselin est un endroit où il fait bon se retrouver pour partager de bonnes crêpes savoureuses entre amis.

La Crêperie de Josselin est nichée au 67 rue du Montparnasse, au beau milieu d’une horde d’autres crêperies, quelque part entre les stations Edgar Quinet et Montparnasse. Sa devanture somme toute banale ne dénote en rien de ses consœurs et le seul indice qui peut vous amener à vous y arrêter est la queue qui se forme invariablement devant ses portes chaque soir.

Quant à moi, ce soir là, je n’avais pas du tout prévu de sortir, c’est après avoir enchainé R.V. sur R.V., marché sous la pluie et éprouvé les premiers signes avant coureur de la fatigue que j’ai appelé mon meilleur ami Pierre-Henry pour être sure de passer une soirée paisible et reposante. C’était sans compter sur les plans de ce dernier….

Moi qui pensait reposer mes gambettes devant un bon film ou dans un petit resto trendy du Centre de Paris…. me voici sous la pluie, au fin fond du 14ème en train de faire la queue avec une horde de touristes et d’habitués tous logés à la même enseigne…. pas de table tant que le groupe n’est pas au complet. C’est là que je vous lance mon premier avertissement: la tenancière des lieux est intraitable sur cette règle d’or. A croire qu’elle a été élevée dans le respect des sacro saintes règles de rentabilité des grosses chaînes de fast-food américaines:

Entrer/Commander/Manger/Evacuer

Je commence à angoisser un peu, je n’ai aucune envie de me faire imposer mon rythme ni de passer un mauvais moment à cause de serveurs me poussant trop vite vers la sortie.

Pourtant je fais confiance à Pierre-Henry… C’est vrai, pour qu’il se déplace sous la pluie, dans le 14ème et sans scooter parce que celui-ci est en panne, ce n’est pas juste pour faire plaisir à son amie Neary tout juste rentrée de voyage au Cambodge…. c’est aussi parce qu’il sait que l’endroit est convivial et qu’on y mange bien!

Et il a raison…. une fois installés dans notre boxe en bois sombre autour d’une table rustique avec nos menus en mains, on se détend, on oublie la pluie, les pressions et l’on passe en mode papote! Cela ne nous empêche pas de rire un peu de l’abat-jour en dentelle grossière qui surmonte notre lampe de table… on se demande si après la mode du tricot et du crochet, celle de la dentelle allait prendre le relais. De même, la charmante bretonne du Menu se voit relooker aussi bien côté capillaire que vestimentaire. On ne peut pas nous changer, chassez le naturel, il revient au galop! Et puis, cela prouve bien que nous passons un bon moment. Pas de musique oppressante ni de serveurs empressés…. Juste un resto de quartier sympathique et convivial en somme!

Côté carte, pas de fioritures…. les grands basiques de la gastronomie bretonne. Galettes de Sarrazin pour le salé avec la variation jambon, fromage, œuf, oignons, tomates….. et une option salade verte pour la légèreté! Mais là aussi, simplicité oblige, ni roquette ni mesclun, juste une généreuse laitue agrémentée d’une bonne vinaigrette bien moutardée!

Et côté sucré, les Crêpes de Froment restent elles aussi classiques: sucre, citron, banane, caramel beurre sale, Nutella ou flambée et quelques options crèmes glacées pour plus de légèreté dans un registre vous l’aurez compris une fois de plus classique…. vanille, chocolat, caramel beurre salé.

Bref, on ne se perd pas en conjectures, on choisit rapidement et l’on ne se torture pas de longues minutes en se demandant si la dénomination plus accrocheuse de l’autre crêpe n’était pas plus prometteuse à la dégustation!

Enfin, pour que l’ambiance soit vraiment bretonne, nous arrosons ce repas festif de Cidre Brut servi dans les traditionnelles bolées de grès.

Nos sourires se dessinent, le temps d’un diner nous nous sommes échappés en Côtes d’Armor par une soirée pluvieuse d’avril au coin des crêpières d’une vieille ferme bretonne.

Invitation au Voyage, retrouvailles amicales, suspension du temps. Tous les ingrédients étaient réunis pour faire de cette soirée un moment rare et inoubliable !

La Crêperie de Josselin

67 Rue du Montparnasse, 75014 Paris

+33 1 43 20 93 50

Fermée le lundi

Le Dauphin

13 Mar

A few years ago, my best friends invited me to the Chateaubriand as it was still one of those rising star’s restaurants. We had a really great time and experience but I did not have the opportunity to try it again as I left for London then Miami.

Now I am back…. I intended to go back there but as we were about to meet there with my friend Armelle, she changed her mind at the last minute and took me to the Dauphin which is the Chateaubriand’s little brother, just a few doors further!

I have to say that I do not regret the choice! Based on the same concept, the Dauphin is really well decorated. The bar and stools in the middle of the restaurant makes it very friendly as you are not back to the customers but among them and of course, it always makes the difference when your friend knows all the team…

a-Menu & Drinks

The concept is simple: the menu is seasonal, the chefs work with the best products available and create inventing “small plates”.

I like that idea of small plates…. neither Main nor Tapas, the Small Plate is the perfect size for a bunch of foodies’ friends who desire to experiment great recipes.

On that base, we choose the following:

  • the Ceviche – Cucumber Water,
  • the Clams, Cauliflower and Lemon Caviar,
  • the Wagyu Beef with Baby Leeks and Shallots,
  • the Butternut Squash Puree with Spinach and Old Gouda Shavings.

As an “amuse-bouche” (appetizer), we were offered those cute Cheeses and Tapioca Cubes. Coated with a light, crispy crust, the inside was very tasty and combined a melting texture with the soft feeling of the tapioca pearls. What really made the difference was the choice of cheeses: smoked mozzarella and old Comte were part of that mix….

b-Tapioca & Fromages

Let’s talk about our small plates now…. was there any preferences? not really, we loved each of them.

The ceviche was very tasty and refreshing. Fish was perfectly sized and the marinade really tasted the cucumber which is not always the case when a menu announce cucumber as part of a dish….

The Clams were very fresh and served with a lemon caviar and very thin slices of cauliflower topped with fresh herbs. The whole combination was great as you had the crunchiness of the raw cauliflower balancing the consistency of the clams.

The Wagyu beef was tender and tasty, cooked the French way which means medium rare and served with al dente baby leeks – soft but still a bit crunchy in the center and the shallots were kind of “confites” in a sweet and sour way…. delicious!

The squash puree was silky and the spinach served on top were very tasty. The combination of texture and taste intensity with the old Gouda was an unexpected sensation for the palate. Intense, salty, fruity and silky….

c-Main

We wanted to try some more savory dishes but Armelle convinced me to share some of the desserts of the Menu…. The savory would not match the Don Quirotte sparkling wine chosen by the friendly team behind the counter…

Giggling at the “pop” of the bottle cork, we started to dig in our amazing desserts:

  • a Chocolate and Hazelnut Siphon,
  • an Orange and Cocoa Dacquoise,
  • a Lait Ribot Ice-Cream.

The Chocolate and Hazelnut siphon was very light and tasty and the crunchiness of the hazelnut brittle created a nice effect.

The Dacquoise was simply amazing…. the almond biscuit was very light and crispy at the same time and the orange and cocoa mousse was like a little cloud…. it evaporated in my mouth leaving only the intense flavor of the orange.

And the Ice cream was very refreshing. A perfect choice to finish that great dinner. The Lait Ribot (fermented milk) has that sour taste that is well balanced by the sweetness of the ice-cream.

d-Deserts

I do not need to conclude that post with a general feeling…. as you already understood, I had one of those really great time. Being with a great friend made most of that general feeling but the kindness of the team and the great taste of the food definitely brings me to rank the Dauphin among the best restaurant experiences…

Give it a try, you won’t regret it!

Le Dauphin

131, avenue Parmentier 75011 Paris
Tél. 01 55 28 78 88
Menus : 27 (lunch.) €. Tapas dinner from 5 €  (smoked mozzarella) to 14 €(mallard terrine).
Closed on Monday, Saturday Lunch and Sunday
Closest Metro Station : Goncourt
and also:

Le Chateaubriand

129, avenue Parmentier 75011 Paris
Tél. 01 43 57 45 95The Cellar of those two restaurants should be open soon, you will be able to find most of the great wines proposed on both menus as well as other chefs suggestions.