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Classic Steak Frites

We recently ran a survey around the office to find out what our team would choose as their ultimate ‘desert island dish’. Up the pointy end of the list – above roast chicken, homemade lasagne and just nudging out Mum’s pavlova for top spot – was the office favourite: steak.

Then, more specifically, someone mentioned legendary Parisian restaurant chain Le Relais de Venise L’Entrecôte – a restaurant renowned for serving the most delicious steak frites on the planet. Besides the bottomless shoestring fries, part of what makes the experience at L’Entrecôte so good is the ‘secret’ sauce that accompanies your steak.

For decades, fans around the world have speculated on the exact recipe, and so we took it upon ourselves to cook as many versions as we could until we found the closest match. We’re pretty happy with our results, too, and while there are a few steps to this one, it’s really worth the effort. Just as well it’s Shiraz week at TDL HQ!

Bon appétit.

– Serves 2 –

1 x 400 g porterhouse steak (set aside at room temperature for about an hour)
olive oil
sea salt
400 g McCain shoestring fries (trust us!)
canola or vegetable oil, for shallow/deep-frying
mixed salad, to serve

‘Secret’ sauce
500 g unsalted butter
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 handful of flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 sprigs tarragon, leaves picked
6 basil leaves
4 sage leaves
4 walnuts
1 tbsp. capers, rinsed
4 anchovies
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
½ lemon
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Pour yourself a glass of 2014 Best’s ‘Bin 1’ Shiraz.

If you’re using a charcoal barbecue, remember to light it at least 1 hour before you start cooking. Otherwise, heat a gas barbecue on high.

tdlp_offer10_steakfrites_websiterecipe_step3_4For the sauce, add one-third of the butter and the shallots to a saucepan over a medium heat and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining butter, along with the herbs, walnuts, capers and anchovies.

Remove the pan from the heat as soon as the butter has melted, then blitz finely using a stick blender.

Add the egg yolk, Worcestershire and mustard to a mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

tdlp_offer10_steakfrites_websiterecipe_step7_8Adding small amounts at a time, gradually whisk in the butter and herb puree until a thick sauce. Add the sauce to a small saucepan and adjust with lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.

tdlp_offer10_steakfrites_websiterecipe_step9_10When ready to cook, coat the steak with oil and season with salt. Add to the barbecue and grill for 5 minutes, then turn and repeat – this will produce a medium-rare steak. Rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

While the steak is resting, fry, drain and season the chips.

tdlp_offer10_steakfrites_websiterecipe_step11_12Dress the salad, and warm the sauce through gently. Slice the steak, or leave as is, and serve.