Adapted from Pamela Morgan’s Flavors Cookbook.
As a big glazed ham sets an automatically festive party note, so too, does fillet of beef. Cold or hot, as an hors d’oeuvres or entree, tender, versatile fillet is a classic on the catering circuit. It’s not the most flavorful cut of beef, however and needs to be seasoned and served imaginatively. Here is our flavor-packed method, in which the beef is marinated in a mustardy peppercorn mixture, partially cooked on a smoky grill or skillet, then finished in the oven and served with an herbal fruit sauce.
Party Fillet of Beef
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup whole-grain mustard
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons coarsely crushed black peppercorns
- 2 1/2 tablespoons drained, brine-packed, green peppercorns, mashed
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, preferably tamari
- 6 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed through a press
- 2 tablespoons garlic cloves, peeled and crushed through a press
- 1 oven-ready center-cut prime filet of beef, about 2 1/2 pounds
- 1 cup apple butter
- 4 tablespoons honey mustard
- 1 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
Party Fillet of Beef
- In a large, nonreactive bowl whisk together the olive oil, Dijon, and whole-grain mustards, vinegar, 1 tablespoon of black peppercorns, the green peppercorns and the soy sauce.
- Rub the garlic, rosemary, and remaining 1 tablespoon black peppercorns firmly into the filet.
- Add the filet to the mustard mixture in the bowl and turn it to coat it. Cover and refrigerate overnight (or two), turning occasionally. Return the fillet to room temperature.
- Heat your skillet on high. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees.
- When the pan is hot sear the filet on each side, reserving the mustard mixture.
- Transfer the filet to a shallow roasting pan and spread the reserved mustard mixture before setting it in the oven.
- Cook for about 30-40 minutes, until medium-rare.
- Transfer to a cutting board, tent with foil, and let rest at least 10 minutes before carving.
- Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature, with Apple-Rosemary Sauce
- In a bowl, combine the apple butter, honey mustard, and rosemary. Serve with Filet.