I think I’d get married all over again, several times a year, just so that this exquisitely special “anniversary dinner” could be enjoyed a little more often! (Is that bad??) But it’s just that good. BETTER than I’ve had in restaurants. And this is the classic way to make filet mignon that’s simple, easy, and comes out perfect every single time.
This is the exact way I was taught by a real Chef many, many years ago, and the version I’ve been making for more than 25 years. And it simply is the best!
The key to perfection though, is a well-seasoned cast iron pan. I LOVE my pan and it’s MUCH easier to take care of than you would think. Rules of thumb to clean … NO SOAP … VERY hot water … and salt to magically scrub out anything that stuck or crusted on.
Then always dry thoroughly, and wipe with a little bit of vegetable or canola oil. (*Don’t use olive oil as it will go rancid quickly.) And that’s all there is to the maintenance, which seems to be the main gripe.
Once it’s seasoned, (slow-baked in the oven according to the manufacturers directions, and cooked in several times with a fattier food such as bacon and sausage), you have a pan that will outlast you AND your grandkids, and could not be a better pan to cook in for anything!
The more you use it, the better it gets! And if it’s well-seasoned and well taken care of, food will not stick. It holds the heat evenly like none other, which makes it IDEAL for baking in as well! Baked German pancakes, fluffy baked omelets, cornbreads, casseroles, cakes, regular breads, crisps, pies and cobblers, you name it – – it’ll do the job beautifully.
*And, you can even use it for outdoor cooking on the grill be it gas, charcoal or an open campfire. I know, right?
So if you’re afraid of cast iron, you’re really missing out BIG time! They’re AWESOME and easy to clean. Easiest pan I have to clean of all, actually!
So I’d ask Santa for one if you don’t already own one, because this dish is something that just plain comes out best when cooked in one. Honestly, I hate ordering steaks in restaurants no matter how fancy it is, because I know that I can do it for a FRACTION of the cost at home and NO restaurant compares, I don’t care who you are. I have never had better and filet mignon is my most favorite – – last meal before I die – – dinner request!! (And cheesecake for dessert…but that’s a whole ‘nother story!!)
If you don’t already have a cast iron pan, you’ll need something that has a decent, thick, heavy bottom, is oven-proof, and a pan that you love and trust! (We all have our favorites!) It will also work, but the main thing is, that it cooks evenly, can handle a high temperature without burning anything, and can go into the oven.
Searing the outside, then popping into the oven “to finish” is the whole key to making the best steaks you’ve ever tasted.
Uhhmm, yep!!! Perfection – – every – – single time! What do you think? 😉
And that’s just a small sliver of a slice off of the very end!! It’s perfect ALL the way through evenly, not just the very middle of the center of the cut. And so, so easy to do!
(Sorry the pics aren’t so great! I took them at night and I’m not very good at that yet!)
If you’re like me, and KNOW you can make things better than the over-priced, crowded, LOUD, badly-staffed restaurant up the street, then just do as I have come to enjoy doing as well! Make a fancy dinner at home! It truly isn’t hard, and so very much better!
*And get to know your butcher! He/she will be more than happy to help you with anything you want! (The butcher at our local grocery store is going to get a very nice basket of homemade cookies!) 😉
I hope this is one you save and enjoy for years, and graces your table for birthdays, holidays, special events, and anniversaries of your own, too! Enjoy, and have a most wonderful day! 🙂