Fabulous Christmas Dinner shared with TAOLB

It has been a real pleasure working with Lauren Palmer and The Art of Living Beautifully this year.  When she asked me for my December recipe I couldn’t resist sharing the meal that finds its way to our Christmas table every year.

Beef filets are so easy and fast to cook, making them the perfect option after the hustle of the season.

Filets are a very tender cut of meat and unlike a ribeye, have very little fat.  Since fat is what gives meat its flavor, I always do a sauce or topping on this cut of beef, and my Bacon Butter is the bomb!

I hope you will give these recipes a try this season, let me know how you like them and if you have not already, subscribe to The Art of Living Beautifully TODAY!  You will be glad you did.

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Beef Filets with Pan Sauce

6 6 ounce beef tenderloin filets

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon whole peppercorns

1 tablespoon canola or grapeseed oil

2 tablespoons butter

1 shallot finely sliced

½ cup red wine

1 cup beef stock

2 sprigs of thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Crush the peppercorns using a mortar and pestle or process in a food processor until pepper is broken but still very course.  Prepare meat by brushing both sides with Dijon mustard.  Season the meat with salt and dust with generous amounts of pepper on both sides.  Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat until it shimmers.  Place filets into hot skillet.  Sear the meat for 2-3 minutes on each side resisting the urge to move meat around.  Transfer meat to a baking sheet and place into the hot oven to finish cooking.  Remove meat when it has reached desired doneness.  Tent the meat with foil for 8 minutes before serving.  While steaks are in the oven prepare pan sauce in the skillet by melting 1 tablespoon butter, add shallots and cook over medium-low heat, stirring, until translucent, about 2 to 3 minutes. Raise heat to medium-high, add wine, and bring to a boil. Using a wooden spoon, deglaze pan. Add thyme and beef stock and bring to a boil.  Cook until sauce is reduced in half and is thickening.  Remove from heat and add swirl in remaining butter and salt and pepper to taste.  Serve steaks with a spoonful of sauce over each fillet and top with a scoop of Bacon Butter.

Sour Cream Smashed Potatoes

4 pounds Russet potatoes

1 stick of butter

½ cup heavy cream

1 ½ cups sour cream

3 green onions finely chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a large pot full of water over medium high heat.  Peel and dice potatoes and add them to the pot.  Once water begins to boil, add about 2 teaspoons of salt.  Boil potatoes until they are fork tender.  Drain water off of the potatoes.  Add butter, cream and sour cream and mash potatoes well.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle in green onions and mix well. Serve as a bed for beef fillets.

Bacon Butter

½ cup toasted walnuts

2 tablespoons softened butter

¼ cup blue cheese crumbles

4 strips bacon

1 tablespoon brown sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

Place bacon on a wire rack over a baking sheet and sprinkle bacon with brown sugar and cinnamon.  Place baking sheet in a cold oven set to 400 degrees and let bacon cook until crisp.  Place cooked bacon and remaining ingredients into a small food processor and pulse until smooth.  Serve a single scoop on top of warm filet.  Serves 6

Tips to guarantee fillets are cooked to perfection:

Always allow meat to come to room temperature before cooking. 

After cooking, tent meat for 5-10 minutes before serving to allow juices to redistribute.  If meat gets too cool you can always pop back into the hot oven for 1 minute. 

Invest in a good meat thermometer. And follow these guidelines

Rare – 125 degrees

Medium-rare – 135 degrees

Medium – 145 degrees

Medium Well- 150 degrees

Well Done-160 degrees 


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