Filet mignon is a special cut of steak that is known for its tenderness and delectable flavor. While it may come with a higher price tag, knowing how to cook filet mignon perfectly can help you create a restaurant-quality meal in the comfort of your own home. In this article, we will explore the best method for cooking filet mignon and offer some insights into this premium cut of beef.
What is Filet Mignon?
Filet mignon is a steak that comes from the beef tenderloin, which is a part of the beef that doesn’t get much exercise. As a result, filet mignon is incredibly tender and does not have as much fat as other steak cuts. It may lack the bold beefiness of some other cuts, but it compensates with a delicate flavor that pairs well with simple herbs or a pat of butter. Filet mignon is also commonly used in dishes like Bacon-Wrapped Filet Mignon.
Cutting Your Own Filet Mignon
While you can buy filet mignon at your local grocery store or butcher shop, it tends to be one of the most expensive cuts of steak. However, you can save some money by purchasing a whole beef tenderloin and cutting your own filet mignon steaks. By doing so, you can also utilize the remaining portions of the beef for other dishes like stews and stroganoff.
Should Steaks Be At Room Temperature Before Cooking?
One common debate when it comes to cooking steaks is whether they should be brought to room temperature before cooking. While some people advocate for this practice, particularly for rarer steaks, others believe that cooking steaks straight from the fridge can result in a better sear and crust. Ultimately, the decision is up to personal preference. Experiment with both methods to find what works best for you.
The Best Way to Cook Filet Mignon
After extensive testing, the best way to cook filet mignon is by pan-searing it in a hot cast iron skillet. Unlike methods that require finishing in the oven, cooking filet mignon on the stove is more convenient, quicker, and reduces the risk of accidental overcooking.
To begin, sprinkle your filet mignon steaks with salt on all sides. Allow them to sit on the counter for 30 minutes if desired. Meanwhile, preheat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and add some cooking oil. Once the oil is shimmering, place your steaks in the pan and leave them undisturbed for 5 minutes. Flip the steaks and cook for an additional 5 minutes for medium-rare doneness. Use an instant-read thermometer to ensure your desired level of doneness. Steaks straight from the fridge may require an extra minute or two.
For an extra touch of flavor, consider topping your perfectly cooked filet mignon with a pat of butter. If you prefer a crisper crust, you can place the butter underneath the steak, where it will melt and enhance the moisture. Before serving or cutting, allow your steaks to rest for 5 minutes. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in a more succulent and flavorful steak.
In conclusion, with the right technique, cooking filet mignon can be a culinary triumph. By following these steps and experimenting with your own flavors, you can create a restaurant-worthy meal that will impress family and friends. So, why not treat yourself to this indulgent and tender cut of beef? Enjoy!