There are few things I love more than a perfectly cooked steak, greasy bacon and the combination of something fried and something cheesy. This filet mignon recipe covers all the bases and is a real home run when you decide it’s time to impress that special someone…or ideal if you feel like treating yourself to a candlelit dinner for one. For some reason, cooking with duck products at home makes people think you’re the next Iron Chef, so we incorporate some nice smoky duck bacon to complement the already pretty fancy steak.

Although we’re in the height of grill season, this beautiful filet is seared in the fat that the duck bacon produces, along with a little garlic and thyme infused butter to make things extra juicy. The steaks will be impressively delicious on their own, but the addition of the sautéed mushrooms, crispy shoestring shallots, and the shaved Gruyère cheese will make you feel like you’re doing some serious fine dining. If you get it right, the steak presentation will make you look and feel like you’ve been cooking for years, which is really half the battle. Pair this one with a big glass of quality Cabernet to really bring out the flavor of the steak and add extra cheese if you’re feeling voracious.

Seared Filet Mignon

2 – 6-8 oz. filets
6-8 strips duck bacon
3 shallots – sliced thin
3 cloves garlic
10-12 mushrooms – sliced
Gruyère cheese
1 cup vegetable oil
Fresh thyme
2 tbsp. butter
Salt/pepper

The topping on this steak is a combination of crispy fried shallots, sautéed mushrooms and shaved Gruyère cheese, so start off by frying the sliced shallots in a saucepan with one cup of vegetable oil. Keep the oil on medium heat for about 15 minutes and stir occasionally until the shallots brown. Use a fine mesh strainer to drain the oil from the shallots, and then let cool on paper towels until they become crispy.

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While the shallots cool, cook the duck bacon the same way you would prepare pork bacon, and save the grease for searing the steaks.

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Transfer the bacon grease to a sauté pan, add 2 tbsp. butter, and heat 3-halved garlic cloves with some fresh thyme. Turn the heat on high and add your filets (which should be seasoned with just salt and cracked black pepper).

Filet mignon

Let the filets cook uninterrupted on each side for 3-4 minutes depending on your preferred temperature (4 minutes per side will usually produce nice medium steaks). Remove the filets and let rest for a couple minutes before slicing.

Filet mignon

In the same pan, sauté the sliced mushrooms with the remaining steak juice/bacon grease, and add EVOO/butter if desired. Top the filets with duck bacon, sautéed mushrooms, crispy shallots, and shaved Gruyère cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste, and finish with any remaining juice in the sauté pan. Enjoy.