That is not the point of this post... The point of this post, well, is to post my dinner tonight and hopefully inspire you guys to try something that you haven't done. Ideally I would like to have taken more pictures but sometimes it's difficult with dirty hands covered in Myoglobin... No that's not blood that's covering your vacuum sealed meat, that's a compound called Myoglobin. It is sort of similar.
That's besides the point. Saturday night I went to Costco with meat on my mind. I used to work at a nice butcher shop and when we ran outta meat the boss would send somebody in plain clothes to pick up Costco meat to supplement our low stock. Costco has good meat! and it's at a great price if you know how to break it down.
Don't buy the $19.99/lb already butchered beef tenderloin, it's easy to do it yourself.
I ended up leaving costco with a whole beef tenderloin, a mandolin that I've been lacking in my kitchen, and some good beers.
The beef tenderloin I purchased was a little above 6 pounds. For those of you who do not know, this cut of meat contains the Filet Mignon, a Filet tail, and depending on how you cut it it will also contain a Chateaubriand Steak. Keep in mind as we're reading this that I have pretty limited experience. I never broke down these cuts while working at the butcher shop. I merely glanced into the back room as I estimated how much a pound of ground beef was before I threw it on the scale and packaged it for our customers.
Either way this is what I started with. Cutting boards and 8 Inch chef's knife for size (boning knife would be ideal but I don't have one because I just spent 60 dollars on steak).
So Like I said above... I didn't get any pictures of breaking down the beef tenderloin because my hands were covered in cow juice but to be honest all I did was watch about 3 or 4 videos of professionals breaking down a beef tenderloin on youtube. There are plenty of videos to watch and I won't recommend how to find one because they're all over the place and in general it's pretty straight forward.
This is what I had when I was done breaking it down. In my left hand I have two large vacuum sealed Filet Mignons. On the top right of the cutting board is the Chateaubriand, on the bottom left is the top of the cut that the filet comes off, instead of trying to get another tiny filet out of this piece I decided to leave it intact for a large steak later on. In the middle of the cutting board is the tail of the filet cut. I made an accidental cut in the process and chopped off a chunk I didn't mean to. On the left side of the cutting board are two filets that I haven't vacuum sealed yet.
In the bowl on the right are all of the fat trimmings, silver skin and, depending on what you want to do with it, it also might have the chain, which is a strip of fat that runs along the tenderloin. It's got some good chunks of meet on it so afterward I vacuum sealed it seperately and froze it so someday down the road I could thaw it, cut out the chunks of meat for chili or maybe make a cheap steak sandwich. I will take the fat trimmings and other meat scraps and make beef stock down the road or if I ever buy a hand crank meat grinder maybe I could make some hamburger patties.
These are two of the better filet mignon I got. The one on the bottom I ended up cooking tonight.
I recently acquired a Sous Vide machine as you might have seen in my first blog post. Sous Vide has proven itself, to me at least, to be the best way to cook steak. Now this is debatable for filet because it can be argued that filet will be tender however you cook it but maybe I just wanted to use my new cooking device.
The first thing I did was bring out the blow torch.
Afterwards I vacuum sealed this piece of meat after adding a few turns of rock salt and large crushed black peppercorn. I also add a little bit of butter and a splash of olive oil because the filet cut is so lean it benefits from added fat.
I add the vacuum sealed bag to my sous vide device and in the mean time I heat up some left over mashed potatoes ( Now here is where I know I'm breaking the Paleo diet but hey! I haven't cheated at all today and I'm going by the 85/15 method).
While it's in the machine I also I also throw some asparagus on a baking sheet with a splash of olive oil and some citrus sea salt. Baked asparagus tastes amazing with some citrus added and I can not find my microplane for the life of me so instead I splash it with some lemon juice. Hardly a replacement for orange zest which is even better than lemon but I am only thinking about my steak at this point. I bake the asparagus at 400 for 15 minutes, throwing it in so that it comes out the same time my steak does.
Here is my final meal...
Thanks for reading and I hope you learned something.