Saturday, August 13, 2016

August 13, National Filet Mignon Day - Recipes and Food Safety


Filet mignon is a steak cut of beef taken from the smaller end of the tenderloin. In French this cut can also be called filet de bœuf, which translates in English to beef fillet. When found on a menu in France, filet mignon generally refers to pork rather than beef.

Some butchers in the United States label all types of tenderloin steaks "filet mignon." In fact, the shape of the true filet mignon may be a deterrent when cooking, so most restaurants sell steaks from the wider end of the tenderloin - it is less expensive and much more presentable.

The tenderloin is the most tender cut of beef and is also the most desirable and therefore the most expensive. The average steer or heifer provides no more than 500 grams of filet mignon. Because the muscle is not weight-bearing, it contains less connective tissue, which makes it tender. However, it is generally not as flavorful as some other cuts of beef and is often wrapped in bacon to enhance flavor, and/or is served with a sauce.

Preparation
Filet mignon may be cut into 1- to 2-inch-thick portions, then grilled and served as-is. One also may find filet mignon in stores already cut into portions and wrapped with bacon. High heat is the usual method for cooking the filet mignon, either grilling, pan frying, broiling, or roasting. Traditionally in European and American restaurants, fillets are most often served in a cognac cream sauce, au poivre with peppercorns, or in a red wine reduction.

Bacon is often used in cooking filet mignon because of the low levels of fat found in the cut, as fillets have low levels of marbling, or intramuscular fat. Bacon is wrapped around the fillet and pinned closed with a wooden toothpick. This adds flavor and keeps the fillet from drying out during the cooking process.
Traditional cooking calls for the filet mignon to be seared on each side using intense heat for a short time and then transferred to a lower heat to cook the meat all the way through. Filet mignon is often served rarer than other meats. Those preferring a more well-done steak can request a "butterflied" filet, meaning that the meat is cut down the middle and opened up to expose more of it to heat during the cooking process. Cook to an internal temperature of at least 145° F.


Nutrition Information


References
1. Wikipedia, Filet Mignon
2. Food Network, Filet Mignon Recipes
3. About.com, What is a filet mignon?
4. Consumer Reports, 
6 food safety tips for your summer cookout
  

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