I know, it looks like hell, but the above dish is one of the best I’ve ever eaten.  It’s tiny little supions, or squid, cooked in ink and spiced by the genius of Parisian seafood chefs, Paul Minchilli, so that it leaves a hot tickle at the back of your throat.

I am an expert seafood cook, but I don’t think I’d attempt this dish. For one thing, it’s not that easy to find supions. For another, getting good squid ink is a challenge. But more than that, it’s the absolute care it takes to cook the squid perfectly in the right quantity of ink with just that perfect amount of pepper and herbs.  Chef Minchilli has the knowledge and the flair in his bones.  I know if I make the dish it will be good, but it won’t match his.

And so, when I’m in the mood for a warming dish of squid cooked in its ink, and served in a bowl in one of the kindest restaurant atmospheres in the city, I’ll make a beeline for Restaurant 21. If squid in its ink is on the menu, it will be set before me. If it isn’t, I know I’ll find something equally delicious!

Restaurant 21 (21 rue Mazarine, Paris 6, 01.46.33.76.90)

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