Monday, October 10, 2011
Filet Mignon with Red Wine and Porcini Mushroom Sauce. Hell to the Yeah-Uh.
I am in love with Porcini mushrooms despite the fact they smell like feet when you rehydrate them. Luckily they don't taste like feet. They taste like the most intense, flavorful mushroom you ever had, just without the use of psychotropics. If you don't like mushrooms well, we just don't have much in common, do we? Just kidding. But not really...
Perhaps the real reason I love Porcini mushrooms so much is that they just sit there in my spice drawer month after month waiting to become something tasty. They don't have to be cooked within a few days of buying them like fresh mushrooms do and they add SO much flavor to everything from risotto to side dishes to sauces. Basically they're like a super stealth secret weapon just laying low until called upon to make it rain in the kitchen. Which is just what they did last night.
I now have the answer to what my final meal would be if I ever end up on death row. These steaks, a baked potato, and roasted asparagus.
Filet Mignon with Red Wine and Porcini Mushroom Sauce
Serves 2. Recipe easily doubled.
2 filet mignon, let sit out of the fridge for 45 min, then liberally seasoned with salt and pepper
Olive oil, enough to just coat bottom of a small/medium rimmed skillet
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
.75 oz dried Porcini mushrooms, reconstituted in 1 cup hot water for 30 minutes (reserve broth)
3/4 cup red wine
1 teaspoon Worchestershire
scant 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon of the porcini broth
1 tablespoon butter
Preheat oven to 400.
As stated in ingredient list, reconstitute your dried Porcinis in hot water for half an hour. Onwards and upwards now.
Heat your small/medium skillet over medium high heat. Add just enough olive oil to create a thin layer on the bottom of the pan and let heat through for 1 minute (you want that sear when you add your cow to the pan, sorry Moo Moo.) Add the steaks and let brown on one side - not touching them - for about 3-4 minutes depending on thickness. Use tongs to see if they'll lift easily. If not, let them be another minute before trying again. If so, go ahead and carefully flip to the other side and cook another 3-4 minutes until you have a nice crust. Remove and transfer to a medium baking sheet sprayed with nonstick spray. Place in the oven for 6 minutes for medium rare (about 8 for medium and 4 for bloody.) Remove and tent with foil for 10 minutes before eating - which gives you just enough time to make the sauce!
For the sauce, add the shallots to the residual oil/fat in the skillet from frying the steaks and reduce heat slightly if they sizzle up too quickly/furiously. Season lightly with salt and pepper, then cook stirring often until translucent. About 3-4 minutes. Once translucent, add in the strained Porcinis (reserving broth), red wine, Worchestershire and rosemary. Bring to a boil then scrape up any browned bits from the bottom and stir occasionally, letting the mixture reduce by half - a few minutes or so. Once reduced, and while still boiling, stir in the cornstarch/Porcini broth mixture. It should only take 30 seconds or so at a boil for the mixture to thicken, then kill the heat and stir in the tablespoon butter.
Taste for salt/pepper - if it tastes 'okay' but not 'holy sh*t' then add a good pinch of salt, stir and taste again. A little salt is all that's keeping you from heaven at this point.
Serve the sauce spooned heavily over the rested steaks (again I love these steaks with good ole baked taters and roasted asparagus.)