Since we live in Kansas City -the BBQ Capital- we are grilling about 11 month per year, it would be 12 months if we would not be too lazy to shovel the snow away to find our grill.
Even this year we already had BBQ several times but last weekend we managed to sit outside and enjoyed the nice weather for the first time. I was hungry for spring and wanted something that says “spring” on my plate, so we made fresh green asparagus brushed with the peppercorn flavored oil (see below *), added some salt and grilled over high heat for about 3 minutes. There had been some ciabatta with garlic butter involved and of course filet mignon (you read the headline?). Although asparagus is not in season yet and filet mignon might not be the best choice for this flashy seasoning it was a great spring welcoming dinner before winter weather came back. Too happy too soon!
Filet mignon is a very lean piece of a beef tenderloin, to keep its shape you can tie a piece of kitchen twin or wrap a strip of bacon (not thick cut bacon) around each steak and fix it with a toothpick.
Since a couple of weeks I can’t get enough of this blog yummy supper it is a travel and cook diary from exotic places around the pacific. You can find more of her gorgeous pictures here: 316 pacific days.
grilled peppercorn-crusted filet mignon
Adapted from Thomas Keller “ad hoc at home” peppercorn-crusted beef tenderloin with the difference that he cooked his steaks first in the pan and then finished them in the oven.
If you like to read more about how to grill a filet mignon look here or ask uncle google. But be aware there are as many techniques how to grill a steak as cooks, some with a lid open, some add the salt before and some after grilling. I think you know your grill so you might know exactly how to use it.
35 g / 1/4 cup black peppercorns
1 cups canola oil (more oil lessens the sharpness of the peppercorns)
6 filet mignon (5-6 ounce each, 1 1/2 inch thick) wrapped with bacon
Pour the peppercorns and the oil in a small saucepan, bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from the heat and let steep for about an hour.
*) Empty the saucepan through a stainer. You can keep the oil in the refrigerator for up to 1 month and use it for salad dressing etc. I love to brush it over veggies before I roast them in the oven.
Crush the peppercorns in a mortar with a pestle or put them in a reclosable zipper bag and smash with the bottom of a heavy pan until coarsely.
Spread the pepper on a plate and crumb the filet mignon on both sides with as much pepper as you can handle. Let rest for 30 minutes at room temperature.
Preheat the grill until at least 260 C / 500 F. If you don’t have a thermometer heat the grill until it is nearly too hot to stand beside it when open. Salt the steak, place them on the grill and close the lid. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side if you like your filet mignon medium rare.
Remove from the grill and let rest for about 5 minutes but make sure it won’t get cold especially in the early spring or air-conditioned rooms. A preheated cast iron pan (80 C / 180 F) or a preheated (microwave) plate work great. Make sure not to cook the steak it should just rest.