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from the kitchen of Lorie Fangio, TAOLB Resident Chef

Hosting a crowd for dinner this year?
It has become a tradition in my home to serve beef fillets for Christmas dinner. This is a terrific festive option that does not require tons of prep, planning or perfect timing but still yield an unforgettable meal. When you top the fillets with my Bacon Butter compound, and take a bit of it with my Sour Cream Smashed Potatoes, something magical happens!

Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

Steak and Pan Sauce:

6 6-ounce beef tenderloin filets
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon whole peppercorns
1 tablespoon canola or grapeseed oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 shallot finely sliced
½ cup red wine
1 cup beef stock
2 sprigs of thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Crush the peppercorns using a mortar and pestle or process in a food processor until pepper is broken but still very course. Prepare meat by brushing both sides with Dijon mustard. Season the meat with salt and dust with generous amounts of freshly crushed pepper on both sides. Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat until it shimmers. Place filets into hot skillet. Sear the meat for 2-3 minutes on each side resisting the urge to move meat around. Transfer meat to a baking sheet and place into the hot oven to finish cooking. Remove meat when it has reached desired doneness.

Rare – 125 degrees
Medium-rare – 135 degrees
Medium – 145 degrees
Medium Well- 150 degrees
Well Done-160 degrees

Tent the meat with foil for 8 minutes before serving. While steaks are in the oven prepare pan sauce in the skillet by melting 1 tablespoon butter, add shallots and cook over medium-low heat, stirring until translucent, about 2 to 3 minutes. Raise heat to medium-high, add wine, and bring to a boil. Using a wooden spoon, deglaze pan. Add thyme and beef stock and bring to a boil. Cook until sauce is reduced in half and is thickening. Remove from heat and add swirl in remaining butter and salt and pepper to taste. Serve steaks with a spoonful of sauce over each fillet and top with a scoop of Bacon Butter.

Bacon Butter:

½ cup toasted walnuts
2 tablespoons softened butter
¼ cup blue cheese crumbles
4 strips bacon
1 tablespoon brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon

Place bacon on a wire rack over a baking sheet and sprinkle bacon with brown sugar and cinnamon. Place baking sheet in a cold oven set to 400 degrees and let bacon cook until crisp. Place cooked bacon and remaining ingredients into a small food processor and pulse until smooth. Serve a single scoop on top of warm filet.

Sour Cream Smashed Potatoes:

4 pounds Russet potatoes
1 stick of butter
½ cup heavy cream
1 ½ cups sour cream
3 green onions finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a large pot full of water over medium high heat. Peel and dice potatoes and add them to the pot. Once water begins to boil, add about 2 teaspoons of salt. Boil potatoes until they are fork tender. Drain water off of the potatoes. Add butter, cream and sour cream and mash potatoes well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle in green onions and mix well. Serve as a bed for beef fillets.

Tips to guarantee filets are cooked to perfection:

-Always allow meat to come to room temperature before cooking.

-After cooking, tent meat for 5-10 minutes before serving to allow juices to redistribute. If meat gets too cool you can always pop back into the hot oven for 1 minute.

-Invest in a good meat thermometer.




For more of Lorie’s recipes, please visit our McKinney Kitchens page

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