Cooking Basics

Cooking filet mignon

By Jean Sanders
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Filet mignon is, quite simply, a high quality cut of steak;it is an extra thick cut, from the tenderloin, that is very tasty, extremely lean and usually the tenderest cut available.
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Some easy recipes for cooking filet mignon

While some people find other cuts to be more flavorful, filet mignon simply melts in your mouth, making it one of the most popular choices in steaks.

A filet mignon is commonly cut about two inches (5 cm) thick and three inches (7.5 cm) wide, although there are variations. Filet is rather expensive by the pound (about 453 grams), but a single filet mignon usually weighs much less than a pound, typically weighing in at six to eight ounces (about 168-224 grams). 
Filet mignon can be purchased in grocery stores and butcher shops, and it is also served in many fine restaurants. You may also order prime filet mignon steaks online. They are shipped fresh and ready to cook. It is often wrapped with bacon to enhance the flavor. Because filet mignon is boneless and extremely lean, it is not quite as flavorful as bone-in steaks or those trimmed with a bit of fat. 

Most people who enjoy filet mignon prefer it left thick and have the steak cooked medium rare to rare. Be aware that a rare filet mignon will barely be warm in the center. You might want to have it cooked a little more, but it is best to ask for it rarer than you like, since it can always be cooked a little longer. 

There are many ways of cooking filet mignon. Here are a few favorite recipes:

Filet Mignon With Mushroom-Wine Sauce 
4 servings

• 1 tablespoon butter or stick margarine, divided • 1/3 cup finely chopped shallots • 1/2 pound fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed • 1-1/2 cups Cabernet Sauvignon or other dry red wine, divided • 1 (10-1/2-ounce) can beef consommé, undiluted and divided • Cracked black pepper • 4 (4-ounce) filet mignon steaks (about 1 inch thick) • 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce • 2 teaspoons cornstarch • 1 teaspoon dried thyme • Thyme sprigs (optional) 1. Melt 1-1/2 teaspoons butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add shallots and mushrooms; saute for 4 minutes. Add 1 cup wine and 3/4 cup consommé; cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove the mushrooms with a slotted spoon; place in a bowl. Increase heat to high; cook wine mixture until reduced to 1/2 cup (about 5 minutes). Add to mushrooms in bowl; set aside. Wipe pan with a paper towel.

2. Sprinkle pepper over steaks. Melt 1-1/2 teaspoons butter in pan over medium heat. Add steaks; cook 3 minutes on each side. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 1-1/2 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Place on a platter; keep warm. 3. Combine soy sauce and cornstarch. Add 1/2 cup wine and remaining consommé to skillet; scrape skillet to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute. Add mushroom mixture, cornstarch mixture, and dried thyme; bring to a boil, and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Serve sauce with steaks. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired. Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 steak and 1/2 cup sauce).

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