Being a tender, juicy, and very expensive cut of beef, the filet mignon can be cut with a fork! This beautiful cut of meat offers a melt-in-the-mouth experience and is very expensive too. Often called the King of steaks, it can be an amazing indulgence for every meat lover out there once in a while.‘Filet’ is French for’ strip ‘and ‘mignon’ is French for ‘small’. This is cut from the center part of the tenderloin, from the ribcage of the cow. This part of the cow does not bear much weight and is also not toughened by physical movement- this is why this cut of meat is the most tender. Usually, filet mignon steaks are cut 1-2 inches thick. The steaks come out perfectly round, as they are from the tube-shaped end of the muscle. This cut of meat can be grilled, broiled, roasted, or pan-fried- all of which will lead to a succulent steak on your plate. Given that the filet mignon is such a premier cut of meat, it is also obvious that its price matches the level of richness the steak itself has. And if you’ve got a piece of meat as expensive as that, you better know how to cook it! So, before you hear about why the filet mignon is expensive, you should learn how to cook it.
Cooking the Perfect Steak of Filet Mignon…
Here are a few pointers for you to know before you cook a filet mignon steak:
•The steak cooks better when it’s at room temperature- so make sure that you take the steak out of the refrigerator some 20-30 minutes before cooking it. This ensures that the steak thaws out and settles to room temperature. This results in an evenly cooked steak.
•The filet mignon has very little fat on the inside, so it shouldn’t be cooked beyond medium-rare. Doing so would ensure that the tenderness is locked in, which would be lost if the steak is cooked too much.
•After cooking the filet mignon steak, ensure that you wrap it up in some foil and let it rest for 5-10 minutes. This is to let the juices spread evenly throughout the steak.
•Compound butter, bordelaise or bearnaise sauces are the best accompaniments for the filet mignon steak. • It is always good to have an instant-read thermometer for cooking your steak. Check for 120 degrees and take it off the pan. But if you’re making use of the good old touch-the-meat-to-see-if-it-is-cooked method, look for the meat to be soft but slightly firm. This is when the steak is medium-rare and best cooked.
•Never cut into the meat to check if it is cooked- you’d lose a lot of the meat’s flavorful juices that way, which would make the meat taste a lot less good than it can.
But why take all these precautions? Why not cook it like a normal piece of steak? Because it is expensive! But why so?
The Filet Mignon is Expensive Because…
With all its supremacy in the culinary world, it comes as no surprise that the filet mignon is a very expensive cut of beef. But why is it so?
•It has limited supply but lots of demand:
The beef tenderloin, where the filet mignon is cut from, is a very small part of the whole cow. However, it is still the most desired part of the cow, and the fact that there is very less of it naturally increases its price. Since there is very little of the cut but lots of people who want to give it a go, the price is naturally very high. Along with Ribeye, the filet mignon is one of the more expensive cuts of steak but isn’t all that easily available.
•The effort it takes to clean it:
A lot of time and effort goes into cleaning and trimming a beef tenderloin to get the choicest filet mignon cut. Every fatty part of the tenderloin, along with the silver skin and the gristle has to be taken out, which takes around 30 minutes, minimum. This is a lot more time spent than on any other cut of steak.
When a butcher sells an amazing cut of filet mignon, it means he has spent a good thirty minutes bringing you what is just 8% of what he has cut out. The meat has to be priced to compensate for the 92% that didn’t make it to the stores, which is a lot of money!
The filet mignon is a very popular dish in a lot of high-end luxury restaurants. Now, of course, all dishes at these kinds of places are highly-priced, so it is no surprise that a genuinely expensive cut of meat will be charged much higher than the others.
•Its cost of raising livestock:
It’s not just after the cow’s been butchered, but even before that costs a bomb! To be able to raise a cow well, it takes money to grow the proper grass and feed it premium grains. Even the water that the cow is fed makes a lot of the difference to the quality of the meat it produces.
The tenderloin, where the meat for the filet mignon is taken from, is the most desired part of the meat because it is of a very soft texture. It is the melt-in-the-mouth kind of experience that we’re all looking for.
The filet mignon cut from the beef tenderloin, as explored in this article, is one of the costliest cuts of beef steak. It is one of the rarer parts of the beef which is very hard to source or buy in any place. There’s also the fact that the filet mignon is in high demand in a lot of countries across the world, which also contributes to its price- given the fact that there is very little of it and lots of people to buy. When you consider all this and take it into account, the price of the cut is bound to be high.