It’s hard to believe I was a pescetarian for well over a decade. Have you ever looked back on life, some of your decisions and thought ‘what in the field of wildflowers was I thinking?!’ If you had all day, I could go into details about my laundry list of WTF choices. But, I’ll spare your attention span, and the feelings of a few frogs I dated.
Anyways, attending culinary school was one of my
good great decisions. Mostly because they force fed me meat and broke me out of my pescetarians ways. No, there weren’t restraints or anything involved, it was more like: eat this meat or show yourself the door… and while said door is hitting you where the good lord split you, find a new career aspiration.
Obviously I chose to eat, and thoroughly enjoy, the meat… a choice I am forever grateful for, because life without bacon and steak?? That’s not a life if you ask me.
Graduating culinary school led me to working the line in one of the high end steak houses at Disney’s Epcot. I’ve grilled more steaks than I care to count… hundreds per night. While there is absolutely nothing wrong with a steakhouse grilled steak, it cannot hold a candle to these.
Bacon, Blue Cheese & Shallot Compound Butter topped Filet Mignon. This is Boy and I’s favorite way to prepare a thick cut chateaubriand or filet. Not to be confused with our favorite way to cook a thinner cut of steak, like a rib-eye.
The filet develops a deeply darkened, crispy crust by being perfectly seared in a SUPER hot cast iron skillet and allowed to work its Millard reaction magic. A.K.A, don’t futz with the damn steak! Put it in the HOT pan and don’t touch it for 3-4 minutes. Resist the urge to pester the steak. Then, flip it and let it cook for another minute or two before transferring it to the oven to finish cooking. This will allow the steak to have a melt in your mouth, tender, juicy interior.
Then comes the life altering, piece de resistance. The compound butter. Salty, crispy bacon, pungent, tangy blue cheese, hints of garlicky, caramelized shallots all whipped together with butter to yield a soft, airy, decadent compound butter that will send your filet into the next stratosphere, flavor wise.
Now, I have heard the argument that filet is so great on its own, you shouldn’t ruin it with complications. While I do agree simply seasoning the steak and avoiding ketchup or steak sauce is a must, I do not agree with the fact that it shouldn’t be garnished with a pad of this delicious compound butter. Question: Gisele Bundchen is naturally drop dead gorgeous, right? Does that mean she doesn’t deserve (and look even more radiant with) a small dab of lip-gloss or touch of blush??? My point exactly.
Next time you want to treat a loved one, or simply yourself (because if you are anything like me, this is a perfectly acceptable lunch for one) I kindly demand you make this Bacon, Blue Cheese & Shallot Compound Butter topped Filet Mignon. I guarantee you will love it.
Oh, and before I forget, the compound butter recipe yields an entire stick. Feel free to half it, or do what I do and use it for baked potatoes, roasted vegetables, or on top of other proteins. Until next time, go pick up some filets and whip some butter 🙂 Cheers!
Cast iron skillet seared Filet Mignon topped with a luscious bacon, blue cheese & shallot compound butter. These steaks are perfect for date night in!
- Compound Butter:
- 2 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 large Shallot - finely diced (about ½ heaping cup)
- 1 clove Garlic - finely diced
- 3 TBS Blue Cheese - crumbled
- 4 thick cut Slices Bacon - cooked and crumbled
- 8 TBS unsalted Butter - softened and cubed
- ½ tsp Worcestershire Sauce
- ¼ tsp Kosher Salt , plus more to taste
- 1/8 tsp Cracked Black Pepper , plus more to taste
- 2 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 Thick Cut Filet Mignons
- Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper , to taste
- For the Compound Butter: Warm the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add shallots and season with measured salt and pepper. Sauté shallots until soft and beginning to caramelize, about 4-5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 45 seconds-1 minute. Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
- Add remaining compound butter ingredients to the bowl of the stand mixer. Mix on medium-low speed until smooth and combined, about 2 minutes.
- Transfer compound butter to a large piece of parchment paper and roll it into a log.
- Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before using.
- For the Steak: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Pat steaks thoroughly dry with paper towels. Rub both sides of steak liberally with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper.
- Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Add olive oil and swirl to coat pan. Immediately add steaks and reduce heat to medium high.
- Cook undisturbed for 3-4 minutes, until a nice sear is achieved on the underside of steak. Flip steak over and allow to cook another 1-2 minutes undisturbed. Transfer the cast iron skillet to the oven. Cook until an insta-read thermometer reaches desired temperature. 120 degrees F for Rare, 130 degrees for Medium rare, 140 degrees for Medium.
- Remove cast iron skillet from oven and transfer steak to a clean work surface. Top each steak with a pad of compound butter. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
*yields 1 stick of Compound Butter.
*Nutritional Information is for one steak with 2 tablespoons of compound butter.