December 28, 2008

Perfect Holiday Meal

I love Tyler Florence.

I watched him make Filet Mignon with Blender Bearnaise and Bacon and Brussels Sprout Hash on Food Network about a week before Christmas. I was drooling. And inspired, so much so that I started to ask around to find "orphans" for me to feed.

Fortunately for me, my aunt and her family were available. Off the market Brandon went to pick up almost 5 lbs. of beef tenderloin.

"This better be good meat for the price I just paid," he texted me from the check-out line.

Oh yes. Yes, it was.

For the beef, I followed the instruction to the tee, especially the part where the meat should be in room temperature. You see, I forgot to tell Brandon to ask the butcher to have the meat trimmed and tied up so I had to do that myself. Not a lot of silver skin to trim but trimming and tying took longer time that I thought.

The meat came out very tender, perfectly medium to medium rare. I even deglazed the skillet with brandy, add a little broth and a knob of butter to make pan sauce.

The bernaise was incredibly easy. I managed to mess up just a little bit but I recovered quite well. First, I had sherry vinegar in my pantry and not champagne. Per some suggestions online, I substituted rice vinegar for that. Then, I ran out of my little bottles of white wine I bought for cooking. Being a mostly red wine household, I had to crack into a bottle of a sweeter white wine instead of the dry...which I hope will compliment the rice wine and make up for the champagne vinegar. The reduce still came out tasty and the sauce was perfect.

The hash, now that one I changed around a bit. Since I was already making mashed potatoes, I omitted the potatoes in the hash. I also used both frozen pearl onions and brussels sprouts.

All components, even with the mashed potatoes, went very well with each other.

As for dessert, brownies a la roasted banana gelato was the star.


Now for the drinks. I adapted Giada's Sgroppino recipe by using different flavors of sorbet. The pomegranate-blueberry was quite a hit for the holidays. (In the summer, I made this with mango sorbet. Yum!)

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