Filet Mignon with Peppercorn Sauce
Filet Mignon in a Peppercorn Sauce, is one of my all-time favorite recipes to make at home. While it comes off as a complicated and complex meal, it’s actually very simple to make, with just a few ingredients. The star ingredient of course is the Filet itself, and for this recipe I’m using some wonderful steaks from Certified Steak and Seafood. I’m happy to be working with such a great ingredient, and I’m sure you’ll love these steaks too.
Recipe Overview and Keys to Success
- To make a great Filet Mignon with Peppercorn Sauce, just follow these few simple steps:
- The most important part is cooking the steak right. Start with a room temperature steak, well-seasoned with salt, and sear it in a very hot pan. Finish it in 400 degree oven until it reaches medium rare (my preference) or your desired temperature.
- Steaks need to rest once cooked, so make sure you give it a few minutes before cutting into it. Fortunately, that few minutes will be just the time you need to make the peppercorn sauce.
- Use fresh ground black pepper, rather than pre-ground. It has much more flavor, and finely ground pepper can make the sauce taste grainy.
- I love the flavor a bit of cognac, or brandy, gives the sauce, but if you’re worried about the alcohol, you can skip it; the sauce will still be great
Ingredients (for 2)
- 2 8oz Certified Steak & Seafood Filet Mignon
- 1 – 2 tablespoons of coarse ground, fresh black pepper
- ¼ cup of cognac
- ½ cup beef stock
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Olive oil for cooking
- I like to take the filets out of the freezer the morning I plan to cook them and allow them to defrost in the fridge, but if you’re in a hurry, your countertop is fine
- About 30 minutes before you’re ready to cook, unwrap the steaks, pat off any moisture with a pepper towel and allow them to come to room temperature
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, and season the filets liberally with salt on all sides
- Heat a heavy bottomed pan (cast iron is great) over high heat until it just starts to smoke
- Coat the bottom with a thin layer of olive oil, and add the filet mignons
- Turn the heat down just a bit, to medium high, and allow the filets to sear on that side for about 4 minutes, without lifting them, or shaking the pan
- Turn the steaks over to sear the other side, and then move the entire pan into the 400 degree oven
- It will take about 7 – 8 minutes to get to medium rare, an internal temperature of ~130 degrees. If you like your steak more cooked, leave them in oven for longer. About 6 additional minutes will get you well-done.
- An optional, decadent steak house trick, is to remove the pan from the oven about a minute early, and add the butter to the pan. Allow it to melt, over high heat on top of the stove, and use a spoon to baste the filets in melted butter for about 30 more seconds.
- Set the filets to the side to rest, and drain the excess butter/fat from the pan. Set the pan back on the heat.
- Add the cognac carefully, as it could flame up
- Reduce by half to burn off the alcohol, then add the ground peppercorns and the beef stock; again reduce by half
- Add the cream, stir together and reduce until the sauce is the desired consistency
- Taste the sauce and add salt if needed
- Plate up your rested steaks, and spoon the peppercorn sauce right over the top
Nothing goes with this Filet Mignon with Peppercorn Sauce, like a nice, big California Cabernet Sauvignon. The big flavors from the meat and peppercorns, need the leather, smoke, and chocolate notes typically found in a good cab. Plus, the fat from the meat, as well as the cream in the sauce, help to tone down the tannin in the wine. Enjoy!