Grilled Filet Mignon. A very special meal for very special times or as an everyday surprise. As good as it sounds and it can be yours with this simple technique.
I consider filet the king of all meats. If I want something very special, this is it. I usually buy the whole beef tenderloin, and a 6 to 8 oz filet will only really cost you about $6 which is less than a fast food trip.
Since this is a “how to” post, we will start with how to buy the meat. For those not in the know, a filet mignon is cut from whole beef tenderloin AKA a pismos. You can buy pre-cut, and it will be a bit more expensive, but I usually buy the whole tenderloin and cut my own. There are may methods of trimming. Here is a YouTube Video. I like about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches. It does freeze great.
QUALITY DOES MATTER. It is all about quality here. Prime is the top 2%; you can’t find it (it goes to the absolute best restaurants), and you don’t want to pay the price. Next is Choice. About half the beef sold in the USA is choice, and this is what you should buy. It will be about $10-15 per pound for the whole tenderloin. Select is next but just say no.
The grill is next. You need to know your grill. We are going to use direct heat here with a grill surface temperature of about 450 up to but not over 500. On my grill (which is very hot) that is just above 50%. On more normal grills it should be about 75% but get a $10 grill surface thermometer and get to know your grill.
Notes: If you do this without a meat thermometer, you are foolish and risking your expensive filet. Your end point is the internal temperature you want or a little less. It is up to you. DO NOT COOK BY TIME ALONE.
The timing of the seasoning is important. Do not put salt on the meat for more than a few minutes unless you are going to do 60 minutes or more.
Start with quality filets. I like a 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inch thick that will be 6-8 ozs. each.
One of the most important steps is resting the filets at room temperature for 30 or so minutes. This raises the temperature of the meat making getting your desired internal temperature much easier. While it is resting, get your grill temperature about 450. Just over medium for me but more medium high on lesser grills. Of course, clean and oil the grill.
Give the filets seasoning of your choice. Do it just before grilling. I use a nice sprinkling of my 7:2:2 seasoning but just a nice sprinkle of coarse salt and pepper will do.
Place the filets on the grill. (Yes close the lid). Grill on the first side for 6 minutes. Rotate half the way though for these nice crossed grill marks. Flip and grill until you reach the correct internal temperature for your taste. For me, I do another 6 minutes (with the rotation) and get 145-150 internal temperature.
Remove and rest for 5 minutes minimum. A light foil tent is a good idea here.
September 10, 2016