Beef Medallions in Red Wine Reduction

So you’ve bought a package of Filet Mignon to celebrate Valentine’s Day! Use this recipe. But what if you just thought you bought that pricey cut at a great price and when you opened the package it wasn’t what you expected? The lovely bacon wrapped Filet is firm and dense!

Medallions of Beef with Wine Reduction
Medallions of Beef with Wine Reduction

This can happen to even seasoned cooks if they aren’t careful, so If the price is too good to be true, doubt it. Pick up the package and notice it probably doesn’t actually say Filet Mignon, but perhaps just says “filet” or maybe “steak.” You’re likely to turn that to sawdust if you cook it as if it were the tender, well marbled Filet Mignon, a cut from the tenderloin.

Probably an "eye of round" on left, a Filet Mignon (a cheap one!) on right.
Eye of round on left, a Filet Mignon (a cheap one!) on right.

What you have is probably “eye of round” steak, but this recipe will save you, and is a great one to pull out when faced with this dilemma – fantastic with Filet Mignon, outstanding with any of the odd “tail” pieces from a tenderloin (different sizes don’t matter since they’ll be pounded) and very good, even with the prone to be tough Eye. Although the eye of round is a tricky steak, and it will never be butter knife tender, I think you’ll be quite pleased with this recipe.

Slice horizontally through, then pound
Slice horizontally, then pound; the bacon will go in Brussels Sprouts

Since these are lightly pounded into medallions, about 1/2″ thick, they’ll be slightly tenderized. They’re then “flash” cooked – seared off very quickly in hot, hot pan. If done fast, there’s little chance even the toughest of meats will seize up – and they’ll only be cooked from rare to medium -rare. You’ll practically turn it in the pan and it’s done, although you’ll need to keep in mind it will continue to cook even after it’s removed from the pan.

Adapted originally from an Epicurious Recipe, this has been a go to “Special Occasion” Dinner at our house for ages. Perfect for a romantic dinner! I’ll serve these with the most marvelous Pureed Parsnips, Bacon Brussels Sprouts and Mushrooms Dianne.

Medallions of Beef with Wine Reduction
Medallions of Beef with Wine Reduction

Beef Medallions with Red Wine Reduction

  • Servings: 4
  • Time: 25 min
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds beef tenderloin or alternative
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 small onion, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 2 cups canned beef broth or 1 cup beef, one cup chicken
  • 1 cup dry red wine

Cut tenderloin into 3/4 to 1 inch pieces. Pound beef rounds to flatten to generous 3/8 inch thick medallions. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Add two tablespoons butter to a saucepan. Add onions and thyme; sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute for a few seconds longer. Add flour; stir 1 minute. Add broth and wine. Boil until sauce thickens and is reduced to 1 1/4 cups, stirring occasionally, about 12 minutes.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter and olive oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, sauté beef in skillet until brown on outside but still pink in center, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer beef to plate.

Add sauce to the skillet; if it’s been sitting for a moment, reheat. You’ll notice it slightly thickens as it’s added. Don’t bring to a boil at this point. Add any juices from the beef to the skillet and stir in.

Arrange medallions on plate, add a little sauce, sprinkle with parsley if desired.

from the kitchen of http://www.frugalhausfrau.com

These Fillets are thin, only cook them for a moment or two!
These Filets are thin, only cook them for a moment or two!

Let’s talk about how to save money/time on this recipe:

  • Read {Strategies Applied} for additional tips as well as throughout the recipe for saving money/time and managing this recipe on a budget.
  • Follow my 12 Strategies – You’ll see them on the upper drop down menu of every page and how I apply them, below.
  • Don’t get discouraged if your prices don’t match mine! Keep shopping at the best prices and your fridge/freezer and pantry will be stocked with sales priced ingredients.
  • Use a coupon matching site! One of my favorites in my area is Pocket Your Dollars, but every store has a group of enthusiastic Coupon Matchers. Do not discount the savings! I check their site every week, even if I don’t “need” to go to the store and often find bargains I can’t pass up.
You can see how this might be confused with Filet Mignon.
You can see how this might be confused with Filet Mignon.

Nutrition:

Using 1 pound tenderloin: calories 421; Total Fat 25 38 %; Saturated Fat 11 54 %;  Monounsaturated Fat 10 g; Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g; Trans Fat 0 g; Cholesterol 118 mg 39 %; Sodium 369 mg 15 %; Potassium 492 mg 14 %; Total Carbohydrate 5 2 %; Dietary Fiber 0 1 %; Sugars 1 g; Protein 33 67 %; Vitamin A 5 %; Vitamin C 3 %; Calcium 4 %; Iron 14 %

Just for contast: McDonald’s Big Mac: Calories 530; Fat 27g; carbohydrate 47g; sodium 970mg; sugar 9g.

Perhaps some of my wine friends might be able to make a suggestion as to some of their favorite “budget” wines to use in a dish like this?

14 thoughts on “Beef Medallions in Red Wine Reduction”

    1. Thanks, Suzanne. There was a back story,too. Child number 2 took part of the Brussels, Wine Reduction and Mushrooms, and we stopped on the way for better steaks and baking potatoes so he could make a gourmet meal for his g/f. He went all out, a necklace, flowers, balloon and chocolate!

  1. Yum, . . . not frugal for tenderloin, but still great that it’s on your blog and that you made this dish to share with us at FF this week! Have a fabulous weekend!

    1. You’re too kind, CCU! It’s marvelous and you might notice, if you don’t dump it into the pan the steak was cooked in, has no meat products! Just use a tablespoon of butter to finish it off by turning off the heat and slowly whisking as it melts.

      It was so good with the parsnips and would be marvelous over many, many things!

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