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My Recipes-of-the-Week are featured here on my Home page. You can find 2000 of my kitchen-tested recipes using the Recipes tab, watch over 125 Kitchen Encounters/WHVL-TV segments using the TV Videos tab, join the discussion about all of my creations using the Facebook tab, or Email your questions and comments directly to me--none go unanswered. "We are all in this food world together." ~Melanie


~Grillmarked -- Things to Know about the Filet Mignon~

6a0120a8551282970b022ad39f6a58200bFilet mignon.  We are all familiar with this cut of beef, but in case you don't know it's name is French.  In French, the word Filet means a thread or a strip, and mignon means small and pretty. Filet mignon, known worldwide as the king of steaks, when cooked properly, is melt-in-your-mouth tender and can literally be cut with a fork.  It's particularly pricey if your ordering it in a restaurant, but becomes more affordable if you buy the entire tenderloin and cut the steaks yourself.

What part of the cow does the filet mignon come from?

SPR_995304-cuts-of-beef-chuck-loin-rib-brisket-and-more_Tenderloin-5a8b310a3de42300377d65abFilet mignon is cut comes from the middle of the tenderloin (also called the short loin)  which is found inside the rib cage of the cow. Long story short, because this muscle is not weight-bearing, the connective tissue is not toughened by exercise, resulting in extremely tender meat. The  technical name of the muscle is poases major.  It sits inside the ribs next to the backbone and gets thicker toward the rear of the animal.

Interestingly each animal (lamb, pork, veal, etc.) has two tenderloins, one on each side of the rib cage.  Filet mignon beef steaks are cut from the middle of the tenderloin, in between the pointy tip near the shoulder and the thick steak at the rear, which is called Chateaubriand. Porterhouse and T-bone steaks (all of which include the filet mignon as the medallion of meat on the other side of their bone across from the sirloin).  Filet mignon steaks are generally cut to a thickness of 1, 1 1/2 and 2 inches and average 2 to 3 inches in diameter.  That said, the true petit filet mignons are no more than 1 inch in diameter and are taken from the tapered end known as the tail.

What's the best way to cook a filet mignon steak?

Feel free to take your filet mignon into the great outdoors to cook it on the grill, but, I don't recommend it.  Why?  The filet, might be cut from the tenderloin, which is the leanest, tenderest cut of beef, but, it is the least likely to succeed over the dry, open flame of any seething-hot charcoal or gas grill grids.  That said, indoors, on a grill pan, where it has a solid, steamy surface to sear itself above its own bubbling juices, the filet graduates at the head of its class -- with perfect, 4.0 grill marks too.  It's also worth mention that because filet mignon is so low in fat, it is also less flavorful than other prime and pricey steak cuts (like the ribeye or NY strip steak).  For that reason is is often served with a flavorful sauce or compound butter to accompany it.  Another common technique is to wrap it around the perimeter with a strip of bacon to imitate a fat layer.

Try my ~ Perfect 12-13-Minute 2"-Thick Grill-Pan Filets ~:

6a0120a8551282970b022ad35987d7200c"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2023)


~What's a Cowboy Steak and the Best Way to Cook It~

IMG_3229Learning about various steak cuts can indeed be confusing -- filet mignonNY strip steak, ribeye steak, flank steak, cube steak, etc..  They're all steak, but they're all a different cut of steak coming from a different part of the animal.  Things get more confusing when you find out that one single cut can be referred to, regionally or butcher shop to butcher shop, by more than one name. Which brings me to one of my favorites:  the cowboy steak.  Long story short, the delectable cowboy steak is essentially a bone-in ribeye steak, also known as a tomahawk steak.

Cowboy steaks are huge steaks that resemble a single-handled fireman's ax -- easily enough to feed two people. They are about 18-20 total inches long, 2-2 1/2 inches thick, and, weigh approximately 30-40 ounces each.  Why so long? The rib bone, which they trim to expose the bone is left long for a powerful and pricey presentation.  A cowboy steak is always 2-2 1/2 inches thick because that's how thick the rib bone is.  This is one show-stopper of an impressive steak.

What part of the cow does the cowboy steak come from?

6a0120a8551282970b02b7517f8ce4200bThe ribeye comes from the beef rib primal cut.  The ribeye steak is cut from the corresponding roast, the prime rib, which means this steak is sold two ways: boneless and bone-in.  That said, it's worth mentioning, the bone left in a ribeye makes it a bit trickier for the novice wanna-be grillmaster to cook because the meat farther away from the bone will cook faster than the meat closer to the bone (which cooks slower).

The difference between a cowboy steak & a tomahawk steak:

6a0120a8551282970b01bb09562d17970dA cowboy steak is a bone-in ribeye that has been frenched (a fancy french word meaning to strip the meat from the bone of a rib or a chop to cleanly expose the bone).  If the bone is bone is less than 5 inches, it is a cowboy steak,  If it exceeds 5 inches it's a tomahawk.

To  perfectly cook a cowboy steak try the reverse sear method:

6a0120a8551282970b01b7c8b36870970b"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2023)