Of all the steaks out there, the filet mignon is going to be one of the most tender cuts. Its needs to be treated a little differently than any other steak and will also cook differently than the other steaks. It is a delicious cut of meat and more often than not, it is cooked in a sauté pan or cast-iron skillet.
Choosing the Best Ingredient
When choosing the best filet mignon, there is not much difference between products except by the rating of the meat or type. There is choice cut and primes cut USDA, Black Angus, Kobe, sterling silver and several others available. Any of these will be just fine but they will go up exponentially as the beef gets better. What you want to look for is where the portion of steak is cut from on the tenderloin. You want to get a center cut rather that a rump or tail cut. The filet will be uniform and even with mass and marbling making an easier cut to cook evenly and just taste better overall.
Preparing the Ingredients
Pull the steak out of the fridge and allow it to come up to room temperature before cooking. The meat structure is very different than most other steaks in a filet mignon, so it cooks awkwardly. Letting the steak come up to room temperature will help it to cook evenly. You can use any type of seasoning or rub you like but its best when you just use salt and pepper to season the steak.
During the Cooking Process
Make sure to get a nice sear on the steak initially using a very hot pan. Before starting to sear the steak, preheat the oven to 400 degrees, because you will have to place the pan in the oven. After you get a nice sear on both sides of the steak, place in the oven and cook for about 10-20 minutes depending on how you like your steak cooked. Cooking it in the oven will help to cook the steak faster, more evenly and without over charring the sear on the filet.
The Final Touches
Depending on how you like your steak will determine what temperature the center of the steak needs to be. Here is a reference for you: rare- 125 degrees, medium rare- 135 degrees, medium- 145 degrees, medium well- 150 degrees, well done- 160 degrees. Make sure to use a meat probe thermometer when checking the steak’s temperature.
- Place a frying pan on a stovetop and heat over medium high heat. Add a little vegetable oil to the pan. Also, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Once the pan is hot, place the seasoned steak in the pan gently. Sear on both sides for about 3 minutes each. Then place the frying pan in the oven.
- Continue to cook the steak for about 10-20 minutes depending on how you like your steak. Use a meat probe thermometer to check the internal temperature of the steak.
- Once the steak is finished cooking, transfer to a plate and allow to rest for about 5 minutes before serving.
You can slice the steak up and serve or leave the steak whole and the consumer do the cutting work. Serve and enjoy!