Someone in our home had a birthday today, and it was a big one! Ryan turned 40! Yay!! For three months each year, I’m two years older than him. This 41/39 thing was yuck. At midnight last night/this morning, after wishing him a happy birthday, I rejoiced that he’s finally in his forties too!
We used to enjoy a celebratory dinner out, but ever since discovering this steak recipe, we’ve had birthday dinner in. I remember when we were newly married, Ryan won an incentive at work, and it was for $100 at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. We had never been and I remember feeling so grown up and excited to eat such expensive (and delicious) food. I grew up asking for steak and baked potatoes for my birthday dinner, unless we were going out to eat, in which case I always chose a place where I could get steak. But I had never had a steak that literally melted in my mouth until that Ruth’s Chris evening. Of course I asked Ryan often when he might win another incentive… I was hooked! And we got to dress up!
Well thanks to the discovery of Pinterest, I found a recipe for “Steakhouse Steak” from Whit’s Amuse Bouche. I decided to give it a try one night, and I couldn’t believe it… it was just as amazing as that Ruth’s Chris filet! No grill required. But lots of butter.
I have made this for Christmas dinner, for Valentine’s Day (when I realized I had totally forgotten about it), for birthdays, and for a celebratory dinner with friends at the end of a summer. It never disappoints.
“Do you like steak?”
When Ryan was pushing me to start a blog, and I was all, “no, I don’t know what to call it,” we consulted a friend who is an English professor and fellow blogger, Heather Holleman (go read her blog. she’s delightful. and deep. and altogether amazing.) She was asking what recipes I might blog about, and I asked her, “Do you like steak?” I knew I must blog about this recipe. But I didn’t want my blog to be doyoulikesteak.com… Especially because I honestly only like this steak. I’m a steak snob. I eat it maybe 2-3 times a year, so it has to be really, really good.
So without further ado, let me introduce you to the best steak you will make at home… Use the freshest ingredients possible. Fresh herbs, freshly ground pepper (this one can be a workout depending on your pepper grinder). I buy organic beef tenderloin steaks from Wegmans. If cooking for a crowd, I will purchase them from Costco, but for just our family, I prefer to go organic. These two were $18. Last time I went to Ruth’s Chris (it has been a while), I think a petite filet was $25. Win for steak at home! Though we don’t have those super hot plates here that make all the butter sizzle… I’m afraid I would explode our plates if I tried that at home (I have exploded things. A little scarred still.)
If you like them rare, cook them just for 6-8 minutes. We don’t, so I cook ours a bit longer, like 8-10 minutes. However, if you’re cooking the big fatties from Costco, count on extra oven time. You’ll have to use a meat thermometer or cut into it to check. I know, I know, if you cut into it, it won’t be as juicy. But that’s when you cook steak on the grill. Just spoon more of the butter from the pan over top, and it will be just fine! Really, that’s the secret: butter. Keep spooning the residual butter over top as it cooks on the stove top, and it will make the steak so tender and well, buttery.
The only thing that will make this steak not the best is cooking it too long. I’ve done it. Rare just grosses me out, so I tend to err on the opposite side. It’s better to undercook and then let it rest for a few minutes before serving. It will keep cooking as it rests.
- two 8-ounce beef tenderloins (filet mignons)
- 4 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon thyme, chopped
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
Take 2 tbsp butter, softened, and mix well with the chopped garlic, the chopped herbs, and the lemon zest. Form into a log and refrigerate.
Generously season the filets with salt and pepper, approximately 1 teaspoon of seasoning per side. Heat the remainder of the butter (2 tbsp) and the olive oil in a cast iron skillet to a screaming hot temperature. Preheat your oven to 400ºF.
Sear the filets in the screaming hot pan for about 2-3 minutes per side, or until a nice brown crust has formed. While the steak is searing, continue to spoon the residual butter in the pan on top of the meat while it’s cooking. Slice the compound butter in quarters, and after flipping the steaks over, place one quarter of the butter onto each filet.
Once both sides are seared, place in the center of the oven for about 6-8 minutes, depending upon how thick your steak is. In the last minute of cooking, put the last two quarters of compound butter on top of each filet. Your steak will be ready when it is approximately 135ºF in the center, or when you push lightly on the top center of the steak and it gently and slowly bounces back. (Note, this is medium rare. You can cook longer if you prefer less pink.)
*This recipe is really easy to double, triple... I double it for our family and have our kids each split a tenderloin.