Filet Mignon

Monday, November 26th, 2012

Filet mignon is one of the most popular French dishes and involves a steak beef that is cut from a special part of the heifer or steer. Although this is the name for the cut it is a tradition to prepare it in a special way, so that the cooking process enhances the tenderness and aroma of the meat. Filet mignon seems like a simple dish, but the cut has to be made perfect, the seasoning has to exactly match the taste of the meat in order to get the needed flavor and it needs to be perfectly cooked overall.  This filet mignon is the most expensive cut and the average amount you can get from a heifer or steer is about 4 to 6 pounds.

Fillet mignon is prepared with high heat and the meat is usually cut in 1-2 inch thick pieces that are cooked and served this way. The high heat is kept until the filet it cooked on the outside and then turned into a lower heat until cooked all the way. Usually cooks put bacon around the filet or with the filet because it has a low fat level that needs to be balanced and it also keeps the meat form getting dry while being cooked.

It seems that filet mignon appeared in 1989 in various US restaurants and has achieved its high end food status due to the fact that the meat is rare and expensive. It was also coined as a name in US cookbooks in 1906 by O. Henry in The Four Million but it is also known as fillet de boeuf and tenderloin steak. It is often served with various other foods such as mushrooms or potatoes but most of the time it is served simple cooked not more than medium rare, with a few herbs like chives, parsley, chervil, tarragon and ground pepper.

Although filet mignon is an expensive dish it is definitely one of the tastiest meats you can eat and a great honor for a chef to cook to perfection. It can be easily cooked at home but nothing beats a filet mignon in a French restaurant.

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