Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Filet Mignon with Mushroom Cream Sauce

I don't know if I've mentioned this, but I love food. I love all the different flavors, textures, spices, and every other aspect that food brings to the table. If someone told me that I had choose the same seven meals to eat over and over and over again, that would be a hard decision. However, without a doubt, this filet with mushroom sauce would be on that list. That's how much I love this. I've never been vegetarian or vegan, but I wasn't much of a steak eater when I was younger. Thank my lucky stars for my husband who introduced me to this glorious cut of beef. Good grief! Then, my brother made this mushroom cream sauce to go with it, and I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. My goodness... this is so good. The flavorful, tender beef with the buttery cream sauce is superb. I can't say enough about it. So, I won't... I'll get right to the recipe.
Filet Mignon with Mushroom Cream Sauce:
source for steak recipe: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur
source for the mushroom sauce: my awesome (but very vague) brother

8 oz filets
more butter
salt and pepper

trimmed fat from the steak (yes, I'm serious)
2 T finely chopped onion
1 t minced garlic
2 T olive oil
1/4 stick butter
2 c sliced mushrooms
1 T fresh thyme or 1 t dried thyme
1 1/4 c heavy cream
salt and pepper

Preheat the broiler on high for at least 30 minutes before putting in the steaks. Add a ceramic oven-safe dish on the bottom rack while you are pre-heating the oven.

Prepare the steaks by dabbing any liquid off of the surface of the steaks.
Slather butter all over the top and bottom of the steak. Remember: I have never claimed this as being a low-fat blog. :)
Sprinkle them with salt and pepper on both sides.
Now, as for the trimmed fat, put it in a pan. First off, you should know that I am a fat Nazi. I can't stand the stuff. I will find any shred of fat and cut it out. My dad never stops teasing me for this. I've done it my whole life. My parents would find little scraps of fat under my placement more times than I can count. Finally, this fat has a purpose.

And the reason I say, "my vague brother" is because when I called him for the sauce recipe, he didn't give me exact amounts for half of the ingredients in the sauce. Our family has a habit of just whipping stuff up without writing it down. Make it 'til it looks right. I think I almost nailed it though.

Saute the fat pieces in a skillet over medium-high heat until some of the meat juice has oozed out, and there are browned bits in the pan.
Remove the fat and feed it to the dog or toss it. Add the chopped onion. Reduce the heat to medium and cook the onion for a minute. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
Add the olive oil and butter.
Once the butter is melted, add the mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms down.
While they are cooking, put the steaks on a broiler pan and follow the following cooking chart:
Rare: 4-6 minutes per side
Medium Rare: 5-7 minutes per side
Medium: 6-8 minutes per side
Medium Well: 7-9 minutes per side
Well: I'm not even going to tell you because people that cook a filet mignon to well-done should be punished.

Cook the steaks about 5-6 inches from the heat source. After the first chunk of time, flip them over. This is my half-way point. I'm sure you can see that one of them is significantly bigger than the other. if your steaks aren't all the same size, plan to cook them a little longer if they are bigger than 8 oz. Once they are flipped, put them back in the oven for the remaining amount of time.
Meanwhile, back at the sauce, the mushrooms should be cooked down. Add the thyme and cream to the mushrooms. Cook over medium heat until it is thickened. If your steaks get done and the sauce is not a good consistency, mix 2 T of water and 2 T of corn starch. Add a little bit of that; cook it for a minute to see if it gets to a good sauce thickness. If not, add a little more. Continue until you're happy. It will thicken a little more upon standing, so keep that in mind so it doesn't have the consistency of jello. That would be no good.
Here's the finished sauce. Oh, man. I want some of this right now. Keep it on low until the steaks are done.
When your steaks are done, pull out the ceramic dish and plop some pats of butter in the dish. They should sizzle a bit since this is the pan than has been in the oven for 40 minutes or so.
Add the cooked steaks. If vegetarians are looking at this, it'll probably make them gag to see that meat juice coming out and mixing with the butter. As for me... I love it. Sprinkle the top with parsley and serve.
I'm telling you, this is just as good as any steak dish you'll get in a steak house. Some people won't buy filet mignon because they're so expensive. Well, I got a pack of 4 of them for 24.00. 6.00 dollars a steak is a bit on the high side, but I cooked this meal (steak, baked potatoes, corn, salad) for a total of 14.00 for the family. That's about 6.00 cheaper than going to McDonald's for the whole family. Call me crazy, but I'd say a filet mignon is a tad bit better than mystery meat on a stale bun. If you haven't experienced the splendor of filet mignon, go out on a limb and cook it. I'm telling you, it's the best steak- ever.

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