In Washington people like a good steak. And at one time that was all there was to choose from. There was once a time the city had a few social clubs like the Metropolitan Club, University Club and so on. Those clubs had fine food but was mostly for members to be able to catch up with each other socially. After that there were several steak-houses and a bunch of bad restaurants. This all changed very quickly with the addition of so many great spots to eat at.
However, in the explosion of restaurants, the number of steak houses grew significantly as well. This means you can get any cut of steak, prepared in a million ways all around Washington and just about every other city as well. I like a well seasoned filet of beef for a dinner party and always have the butcher prepare the center cut of the tenderloin, of if you want to be fancy, call it the Chateaubriand. This will come cleaned of all the fat and the silver-skin. You can ask your butcher to tie it every 1 1/2 in so it cooks more evenly and looks better when served.
You can also use the beef to make hors d’ouvres, served on a crostini,with roasted red pepper, or topped with horseradish cream.
- 1/2 pound of beef per person
- Shallot, rosemary, garlic butter
- Salt and freshly-ground pepper
- Take the filet out of the refrigerator, pat dry with a paper towel and sprinkle it liberally with salt and freshly-ground pepper. Let it rest for 45 minutes to bring to room temperatures.
- Prepare the butter
- Put one tablespoon on top of the meat for every 1/2 pound
Time to cook
There is an ongoing debate on slow and low cooking and searing at the end, sous vide, or the traditional way. I like to roast at a hot temperature, before letting the meat rest in tinfoil for 20 minutes or so.
- Set the oven to 500 degrees
- Sprinkle a little salt and freshly-ground pepper on once again and place on the middle rack of the oven
- Now here is the trick: If you want a true medium rare you want to take out at exactly 22 minutes for rare and 25 minutes for medium rare. However, it all depends on the size of the meat, your oven and so on. But this is a good guide unless you have a huge tenderloin that swells up at the end. If that is the case, go for the 25 minutes and you will have various temperatures for everyone.
- When you take the meat out, put another dollop of butter down the middle and wrap in tinfoil for 20 minutes.
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