As much as I love to entertain - I loath big gatherings. Gatherings such as our family Christmas. I often feel out of the loop and lost in a sea of strangers whom I have nothing in common with. This year, it wasn't even fun to shop for anyone, since it was decided that we would all participate in a Chinese Auction. It also didn't help that I basically went into the party in a sour mood.
My mother asked everyone to bring something for the brunch part of the shin-dig. There were muffins, quiches, egg pies, cinnamon breads and general breakfast'y sorts of things...oh, and my beef filet with cucumber raita sauce! Brunch is a combination of breakfast and lunch - and I wanted to bring something a little more lunch-like than eggs and donuts. I guess it was a hit, because I came home with a clean platter to store until next time.
Beef filet is expensive (I got mine at a Discount Club and still paid about $60.00 for the whole filet). If you go to a regular grocery store, be warned...you'll probably drop about a $100 bucks on the same filet. (Save that other half by slicing into 1inch thick slices and freezing them for a later use.) It's totally worth it though - there is nothing like filet mignon!
FILET OF BEEF WITH CUCUMBER RAITA SAUCE
1 center cut Beef Filet, visible fat removed
salt and pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1 English Cucumber (sometimes known as "Burpless" and "Seedless" cucumber), grated with skin on
1 1/2 cups Plain Full-Fat Yogurt
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup Red Onion, finely chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a large skillet, heat oil over medium high heat. Season beef with salt and pepper. Pan fry until meat is carmelized and nicely browned, sealing in the juices. Transfer beef to a baking sheet, insert thermometer into the center of the filet and place in a hot oven until the internal temperature reaches 170 degrees for medium. (Take it out at 160 dregrees and tent the beef with foil - carry over cooking will allow it to reach 170 without direct heat.)
Meanwhile, mix together all raita ingredients in a bowl and chill until service.
Once beef is cool to the touch, use a sharp knife to thinly slice meat. Arrange on a platter and serve at room temperature.
Tender and juicy.