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Old 05-07-2011, 09:09 PM   #1
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Bourbon-marinated filets mignons!

Hey, everyone.

I had these great bourbon-marinated filets mignons and wanted to make one for dinner tonight.

Problem 1: I cannot grill because I live in a small apartment in Manhattan, and although I have a terrace, I can't have a grill out there because it's against the rules of the building I'm in. Lame.

Problem 2: I had my zucchini casserole (win!) in the oven already, so I had to do the filet on the stove.

Problem 3: I didn't know if I should use cast iron or not for my desired results... nice crust (but not blackened) and pink from coast to coast. I'm torn only because my instinct is to use CI for way less delicate cuts than this.

Here's what I did... I made a balsamic honey syrup by reducing 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp of honey, and 1 tbsp of butter for 16-18 minutes over medium high.

Then, I took my strongest burner and cranked it. I brought just enough oil to smoking and then put the steak in.

FIRE!!!!

It went away pretty quickly (within 30 seconds), but I wasn't expecting it. I guess there was more bourbon on those puppies than I thought... After about 4 minutes per side, I let the filet rest and ended up with something that was nearly black on the outside and blue on the inside, even after letting it rest under foil for 15 minutes. Blah.

By the end of the rest, my oven was available again, so I finished it off in there at 450 F until it was medium.

WHEW. What a save. The steak was juicy, tasted great, and was done the way I liked it... but cooking it took years off my life.

What would you have done differently?

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Old 05-07-2011, 09:19 PM   #2
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I would have happily eaten it blue on the inside
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Old 05-07-2011, 09:35 PM   #3
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Well, I wouldn't marinate a great piece of steak like a filet mignon. You overpower it's delicate (for beef) flavor. Depending on the thickness, I would have pan seared it and poped it into the oven to finish. Cast Iron would be just fine for this.
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Old 05-08-2011, 05:58 PM   #4
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I, too, wouldn't marinate a FM. Last week I had a couple and did what Mom used to call "fake filet mignons" with the real thing. That is, wrapped them in a slice of bacon. It was good, but overkill. The bacon that enhance the burgers or eye round that Mom (and I, in the past) normally used for the "fakes" totally overwhelmed the real thing. I wouldn't repeat it except with the hamburger or the cheaper cuts, and leave plain kosher salt and fresh ground pepper for the expensive real deal.
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Old 05-08-2011, 07:36 PM   #5
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I agree. I wouldn't marinate a filet mignon, esp in something strong like bourbon. That's for a cheaper cut.

Filet of beef needs only some salt and a hot fire or other heat source.
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:16 PM   #6
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I would have saved the bourbon for deglazing the pan, and done the filet with just salt and pepper. If you have a great piece of meat, don't you want it to taste like steak?
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:25 PM   #7
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I would have saved the bourbon for deglazing the pan, and done the filet with just salt and pepper. If you have a great piece of meat, don't you want it to taste like steak?
Yes. Make a nice pan sauce out of the fond and some shallots and mushrooms and the bourbon.
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:44 PM   #8
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I would have saved the bourbon for deglazing the pan, and done the filet with just salt and pepper. If you have a great piece of meat, don't you want it to taste like steak?
Quote:
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Yes. Make a nice pan sauce out of the fond and some shallots and mushrooms and the bourbon.
I love ya both, but y'all are makin this way too complicated

Just drink the bourbon while the steak cooks...and be done with it!!!
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Old 05-09-2011, 03:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I love ya both, but y'all are makin this way too complicated

Just drink the bourbon while the steak cooks...and be done with it!!!

What Bob said.
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Old 05-09-2011, 04:18 PM   #10
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What Bob said.
Ditto.
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:33 PM   #11
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I think they were pre-marinated...
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Old 05-11-2011, 08:00 AM   #12
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I think they were pre-marinated...
Oh, those awful things in the sealed plastic trays! My personal belief is that premarinated meats are old stuff they package just before (maybe) they spoil. Reminds me of good ol Food Lion, a Dutch owned company, that got caught bleach washing spoiled chicken and repackaging it. No more of them around here.

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Old 05-12-2011, 12:02 PM   #13
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Haha Uncle Bob... Perfect!

Anyway I am so surprised how many people feel the need to marinade great cuts of meat when it actually does more harm than good.

As for the bourbon, you basically created a flambe, albeit an exaggerated and dangerous one resulting from alcohol meeting extreme heat.

For the same flavours, next time sear your steak, season it, cook it in the pan and just when removing it, only then add your bourbon.... but carefully.. flambe!! Then add some BBQ sauce or basic brown sauce and bring to heat.

Then you've got an amazing steak with an equally tasty sauce.
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