Brack happened to walk through the room one day when I was planning our menu for Valentine's Day, so I asked him what he thought we should have. Without hesitation, he said, "Filet Mignon"!
Now let me assure you, my 11 year old doesn't have filet mignon every day! But he has had it a couple of times, and as he, his daddy and his sister are all deer hunters, he has had deer tenderloin MANY times. Same difference.
So, I picked up two packages of the little bacon wrapped tenderloin steaks you see in the meat department. I found these at our Tallassee Walmart, so I know you can find them! Are you ready for this? They were $7.98 a package, so $16 dollar for two packs - $4 a steak!
Now, I truly believe you get what you pay for, but I also believe that while you can ruin an expensive cut of meat by overcooking it, I also know that a good cook on a modest steak can go a long way toward making a delicious meal.
A while back, I saw this technique on America's Test Kitchen and I've tried it a couple of times, so I knew what I was doing. However, I was more than thrilled with the results I got on these inexpensive little steaks. Are you ready for this?
First, I set the steaks out for an hour to come to room temperature. Cold meat seizes up when it hits the oven or grill, so you want it totally relaxed before cooking it. Then I preheated my oven to 275 degrees.
I took a toothpick to secure the bacon slices and then I LIBERALLY seasoned them on both sides with kosher salt, fresh ground pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.
Then I placed them on a cooling rack set inside a cookie sheet. We like our steaks medium rare, so I placed these in the oven for 25 minutes. The picture above shows what they looked like when they came out of the 275 oven. If you like yours medium, add another 5-6 minutes, but I wouldn't go any longer than that.
I took them out of the oven and let them sit for the few minutes it took to heat my pan and 2 tablespoons of canola oil over medium high heat.
Once the oil just started to smoke, I placed the steaks in the pan and left them for two minutes. DO NOT TOUCH THEM! They'll get a great sear and crust if you leave them alone. Then I flipped them and cooked them for two minutes on the other side. Again - don't touch them.
Then I placed them on their sides and crisped up the bacon. It was done, just not crispy.
I leaned them against the side of the pan and rotated them every thirty seconds or so until the bacon was done.
I then removed them to a platter tented with foil and let them sit while I fixed our plates.
(Don't forget to take the toothpicks out!)
We had filet mignon, potatoes au gratin, and a side salad of mixed greens, fresh strawberries and cinnamon pecans with poppyseed dressing. (What I had on hand!)
Isn't that sear beautiful?
Y'all this steak was one of the best steaks I've ever had. Starting it off in the low temp oven cooked it evenly inside. Finishing it in a hot pan gave it great color and texture. This $4 steak tasted more like something we've paid $30 plus for in a restaurant.
There was absolutely not one bite left on any of our plates!
Check back soon for the recipe for the potatoes au gratin. Oh.My.Word!
I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!
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