I know I've mentioned before that about 70% of my meals (or maybe even more?) are vegetarian. By choice. It's not even a conscious choice most times anymore; it's just how we eat. But sometimes, we really enjoy meat. Today is a special occasion, so I've taken a buffalo filet mignon out of the freezer to have for dinner. (It's nearly 9 oz, which is plenty for two people). I mention this because I want to share with you the miraculous secret of how we cook lean and fancy steaks in this house.
We do not grill them.
We pan sear them on the stove then pop them into a really, really, hot oven. Then we let them rest before we tuck in. Trust me on this. Try it once with a filet mignon and then thank me later.
Serves 2 (if you're not a big meat eater!)
1 8-10 oz cut of filet mignon (beef or bison)
Salt and pepper to taste
Any other herbs or spices you might want on your meat, though I like to keep it simple
Remove your steak from the fridge about 30 minutes before you plan to cook it. Preheat the oven to 450 or 500 degrees (depending on what else might be roasting away in there and how hot your oven gets). Heat a small, oven proof skillet* over medium high heat (or high, if the flames aren't licking over the sides of the pan) with a very small amount of oil in it (1tsp if it is non stick, more if it's not). Really heat it. Get it smokin' hot.
Liberally season one side of your steak with salt and pepper, then use tongs to place the steak seasoned side down into your skillet. Leave it be fore three minutes. Don't touch. Don't peek. Leave it alone. Season the side facing up while you're waiting. After three minutes, flip the steak over and throw the whole thing, pan and all into the preheated oven. Roast for 8 minutes (for medium/medium rare** For bison, reduce cooking time about 2 minutes).
Remove from the oven, set the steak on a plate and tent with aluminum foil and leave it alone for 10 minutes. Really. Leave it ALONE! This lets the juices redistribute back into the steak. I've tried it both ways and it's worth the wait.
Remove foil, eat and be amazed. Best served with crispy roasted potatoes and a green veg or salad.
*An oven proof pan has metal handle(s) that are 'oven safe' up to a certain temperature. If you don't have one, put a lightly oiled Pyrex dish or other oven safe baking dish into the oven when you preheat it so that when you transfer the steak into that vessel in the oven, the pan is plenty hot and will do the job more or less the same way.
**I am of the opinion that meat cooked past medium pretty much isn't worth eating. Especially filet. But if you insist, leave it in longer. If you like it more rare, take it out a few minutes earlier. I would always err on the side of rare...