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Fillet Mignon with Red Wine Sauce

Take fillet mignon (or similar cut), trim any fat or connective
tissue, then place a strip of blanched bacon around the rim. (I
used toothpicks to hold the bacon in place.) Press salt and
freshly-ground black pepper into both sides of the meat.

Heat saute pan, then add butter (and maybe a touch of olive oil).
When hot, add meat. Let cook 2 or maybe 3 minutes, then turn over
and repeat on the other side. (If cooking two or more pieces, be
sure not to crowd the meat; leave about 1/2 inch space between
pieces.) The meat is rare when the meat has some spring to it.
(If you only cook about 2 minutes per side, the inside will be
almost raw--depending on thickness, of course.) Remove meat to
warm plate.

Pour off most of the grease/fat/oil, but leave about 1 to 2
tablespoons. Add finely chopped shallots (your call on the amount)
and saute for a minute or so. Add good dry red wine to deglaze
the pan, scraping up the brown residue on the pan bottom. (I used
about a half cup of a good Cabernet Sauvignon--the same we served
with the meal.) Let the wine reduce until it's almost syrupy.
Add a bit of butter, let the butter swirl in and mix, then dribble
the sauce over the meat.

We served this with boiled red potatoes with parsley butter, steamed
broccoli with lemon butter, and a tomatoe salad (dressed with a
vinagrette made of extra virgin olive oil steeped with mashed
garlic, red wine vinegar, a little balsamic vinegar, and various
"Italian-style" spices).


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