As I was shopping in Sprouts last week, I noticed they had filet mignon roasts on sale, likely from Valentine’s Day. They were marked down $10.00 a lb, bringing it to $9.99 a lb instead of $19.99 per pound. Now, normally I would just roll-on by as that is still SO expensive, and I don’t eat much meat, but I saw one that was just about a pound and half and thought “this would be perfect for a little dinner party” and so I put aside my budget and decided that I would surprise my husband and a couple of friends who are big meat eaters with my pricy little treat.
Really, it’s easy to pull off perfection with this cut of meat, just make sure you have a good meat thermometer and you can pretty much guarantee a tender, juicy outcome. You can also try and judge it by sight or feel, but really, when you are working with expensive ingredients, you don’t want to chance messing them up. Get yourself a quick-read thermometer and you’ll be happy without the guesswork!
I served this up with some mushroom risotto and roasted asparagus and it was a big hit. I’ll post the mushroom risotto recipe at a later date, I have it scribbled down on an envelope and much translation is needed!
Filet Mignon Roast
- 1 Filet Mignon Roast – (the one I used was 1.6 pounds – good for (4) 6-oz servings)
- Salt and Pepper
- Olive oil
- Fresh or dried herbs – rosemary, thyme, parsley
- Quick Temp type of thermometer (or a standard meat thermometer)
Set your roast out to come to room temperature. Pat dry with paper towels. This is an important step, you want to be able to sear the meat and if it is moist it will tend to steam it and won’t create that desirable brown crust to seal in the juices. Rub with salt, pepper and your choice of herbs. I used fresh parsley, thyme and then put some rosemary twigs next to the roast when I put it in the oven.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat a frying pan that can also go into the oven. (I used cast iron for this and it’s ideal, it’s really the ONLY pan I use to cook this type of meat as you can get the pan really hot, ensuring a good sear). When the pan is HOT, quickly brush the bottom with a little oil and place the roast in the pan. Turn it about every three to five minutes until it is browned on all sides. NOTE, if your roast is sticks to the pan, let it cook for another minute and try again. It will tend to release once it is properly seared.
Add some rosemary twigs to the pan if desired and put the entire pan into the hot oven. If you have a regular meat thermometer you’ll want to insert it into the center of the meat at this time. Roast, until the internal temp reaches your desired temperature. If you are using a quick temp thermometer start checking the temperature at the 15 minute mark. This little roast took about a 1/2 hour to reach the temperature I wanted. My guests like their steak medium rare to medium to I cooked the roast to 150 degrees and then let it rest for about 15 minutes uncovered on the cutting board. Do not skip this step. Letting the meat rest gives the juices a chance to settle so they stay in your meat and don’t end up running all over the cutting board. And do not cover your meat, otherwise it will steam it and overcook. I like to roast it until it is just (and I mean just creeping up to) the temperature I want, then I remove it and let it rest. If you have guests that like their meat at different temperatures (say one guest likes rare and another likes medium) you can put the thermometer towards the smaller end of the roast and cook that end until it JUST reaches medium rare (145) and take the roast out. The center, which is likely a little thicker in circumference should be about (140) which is rare. Hopefully you can make everyone happy this way!
While the meat is resting you might want to make a quick little sauce to spoon over, simply put the hot pan (don’t forget your oven mitts!) back on the stove and scrape up any little bits of meat and herbs, add about 1/2 cup red wine to deglaze the pan. Finish it off by whisking in a couple of tablespoons of butter. Taste and season if necessary, strain if you prefer a smooth sauce. Slice the roast to your desired thickness and serve with the sauce on the side.