Friday, March 13, 2009

Giada's Petite Fillets with Gorgonzola, Shallot & Porcini Sauce

I have a weakness for beef tenderloin. I know there are those who say a New York strip is king, others who swear by the mighty Porterhouse or praise the magical marbling of a rib eye, but fillet is the cut for me.

The fact is, I crave protein more than I do pastas and starches, and there's only so much salmon and chicken a person can eat. Which is why fillets find their way onto my skillet more often than a recession should allow. Velvety tender and buttery despite the absence of fat, there are any number of ways to cook with it.

This particular recipe is from Giada DeLaurentiis. I've adjusted some of the ratios here (Porcinis are too expensive and assertive in my opinion to use an entire cup of them) and swapped out light mayo instead of regular, but Giada gets all the credit for this one. If you've never cooked with dried Porcinis, don't let their scent sway you from trying them. They may smell a bit like dirty socks dry, but I promise I'd never serve you anything that actually tastes like dirty socks. Just remember to rinse them well after rehydrating and before chopping.

Giada's Petite Fillets with Gorgonzola, Shallot & Porcini Sauce

3 ounces (about 3 tablespoons) Gorgonzola
1/4 cup light mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves (or basil or tarragon or a combo there of)

1 scant tablespoons olive oil
2 (4 to 6-ounce) petite filet of beef
Pinch salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large or 2 small shallots, sliced (about 3 tablespoons)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 handful dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in hot water from the kettle for 10 minutes, drained, rinsed and rough chopped
1/4 cup dry white wine

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Put the Gorgonzola, mayonnaise, and mustard in a food processor and combine until smooth (or just whisk vigorously in a small bowl and set aside.)

Sprinkle both sides of the beef with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in an oven-safe medium skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot, carefully place the filet in the pan. Cook until browned on both sides, about 3 to 4 minutes a side. Transfer the steak (reserving your skillet and juices!) to a small baking sheet sprayed with nonstick spray and transfer to the oven and bake until a meat thermometer reads 130 degrees F. for medium-rare, about 6-8 minutes, or 8-10 for medium. Remove the beef from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the shallots to your same skillet over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper and saute for 3 minutes before adding the mushrooms and cooking another 5 minutes. Add the white wine and continue to cook until the majority of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 more minutes. Add the Gorgonzola mixture along with the fresh herbs and gently stir to combine. Taste for salt and pepper (you can thin the sauce out if necessary with a slash of more white wine, chicken stock or half and half), turn heat to lowest setting while you slice the beef.

Plate the beef in a fan on individual plates and pour over a couple of spoonfuls of the sauce. Reserve leftover sauce (if any) for another use, such as roast beef (or leftover tenderloin) sandwiches.

No comments: