Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cooking Lean with Giada: Filet Mignon with Red Wine Sauce

While I made this, I could actually feel my kitchen confidence levels moving up a notch. Me? Making a red wine sauce like a chef in a "fancy-shmanshy" restaurant? Yes, it really did happen. And you can make it happen too! Here is how my light red wine sauce turned out with our filets.


Serves 3


3 (4 to 6-ounce) filet mignons
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons cold "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter"
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1-1/2 cups dry red wine


Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

Generously season the steaks with salt and pepper and drizzle with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Grill to desired doneness, about 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer the steaks to a cutting board. Tent with foil and let stand 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt 1 tablespoons of butter (ICBINB) in a heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt. Add the garlic and oregano and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Whisk in the wine. Simmer until the sauce reduces by half, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat. Strain the sauce into a small bowl, pressing on the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard (or set aside) the solids in the strainer and return the sauce to the saucepan and bring back to a slow simmer. Cut the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and whisk in the sauce a little at a time. Season the sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Place filets on each of 3 dinner plates. Drizzle the sauce over the filets and serve.


I was so excited with the way this turned out. When Rudy challenged me to making a red wine sauce for the filets we had in the refrigerator, I was a little intimidated at first. But if I have learned anything over the past year, it has been that there is no shame in trying. The only shame is in not trying at all. So...I gave it a whirl and I am so happy I did!

The main thing I did to lean-out this recipe was to cut the butter by more than half. For three filets, Giada's recipe would call for 3 tablespoons of butter; mine only uses two. Plus, by using "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter", we are still getting the butter taste with only 1/2 the saturated fat! I am sure Giada's red wine sauce is unreal because even with cutting all that butter, the flavor from the wine, onions and oregano together were delicious.

Giada's directions say to discard the onions, but I held onto them. For plating the filets, first take a spoonful of the sauce and place it on the center of the dish. Then add a scoop of removed onions. Place the filet on top of the onions and drizzle with additional sauce. Bon app├ętit!

I love this sauce and what it did for my cooking confidence. Just another successful lesson from the Cookin' Lean Kitchen. If this is new to you too; go ahead, get brave and give it a try!

NUTRITION FACTS (per serving): 328 calories;  13.92g fat;  11.26g carbohydrate;  20.97g protein;  .87g fiber

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