Filet Mignon with Crispy Shallots

It’s not often that we splurge on a big steak.  So when I decided it seemed like a good night to do it I took my five year old son with me to the grocery store and asked him what kind of steak he wanted.  He was so excited he chose the biggest bone-in rib eye steak in the meat case.  I laughed because that’s not exactly what I had in mind and was able to talk him into these beautiful (slightly smaller) Filets but only if I promised him his own.  Later, when his sister was home and I pulled out the steaks to prepare he said, “Adeline – we each have our own private steak!”  Well judging by their reactions I think we’d better eat steak more often.

This simple recipe was a big hit.  The crispy shallots are just like gourmet little onion rings and they only take a few minutes to make.  You can make them ahead and just leave them out at room temp for an hour or store them in an air tight container if made longer in advance.  And topping the steak with a pat of butter and a bit of creamy blue cheese right before you serve them gives them a luscious flavor that kind of melts into the meat as you cut into it.  This beautiful dish may look fancy but it’s so easy to make and will be sure to wow any meat lover in your family.  I served with sauteed spinach on the side but roasted brussel sprouts, or asparagus and creamy potatoes would be delicious, too.  Just be warned… my kids you won’t want to share!

  1. In a small heavy bottomed, non-reactive sauce pan (enameled preferred), add 1/3 cup canola oil over medium heat.
  2.  Lightly dip the shallots into the rice flour, a few at a time. When the oil is hot (very small bubbles) shake off excess flour, add shallots to the oil, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.  Fry for 30-45 seconds until golden brown.  They will continue to cook when removed so do not over brown them.  Place on paper towels and salt immediately with kosher salt.  Move that stack aside to cool and continue until all shallots are cooked and salted.   These can be done an hour in advance and left on the counter at room temperature.
  3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Remove the steaks from the fridge.  Rinse them and pat them dry.  If they are wet you won’t get the nice crust.  Salt and pepper them generously on all sides.  Fresh cracked pepper is best.  Let me them sit out for 10 minutes while you preheat the oven and prepare the skillet.
  4. Heat a medium cast iron skillet over high heat.  Let it get really hot and then add in the remaining 1 Tablespoon canola oil.  When hot add the steaks to the pan and do not move them.  Cook for 4 ½ minutes then turn them over and cook for 4 minutes on the other side.  Finish in the oven for 5 minutes.  Remove from oven and place the steaks on a cutting board or plate to rest for at least 5-10 minutes before serving.  This is for medium rare.  If you like it more well-done let them go a little longer in the oven.  The exact cook time will vary on the thickness of the steak.  If you push down on the steak there should be a little bit of give to it for medium rare.  If it’s really soft then it’s still rare.  If there is no give it’s going to be medium to well done.
  5. On the plate top each piece of filet with a teaspoon of butter and a teaspoon of creamy blue cheese.  Then top with some of the crispy shallots.  Crumble extra blue cheese around the plate along with extra shallots.  Garnish with fresh chopped parsley.
¾ lb filet mignon (2 equal pieces)

1/3 cup plus 1 Tablespoon canola oil

2 teaspoons unsalted butter

2 Tablespoons creamy blue cheese (optional)

Fresh flat leaf parsley (garnish)

1 whole large shallot bulb (2 sides), peeled and cut into even ¼ inch slices

¼ cup rice flour

Kosher salt

Fresh ground black pepper

Serves 2

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