I didn’t know that mignon is French for “cute” or “cutie” so a filet mignon is a cute filet. That’s a little precious. Bob’s been making filet de mignon axis deer style recently. He started doing it with venison backstrap and it quickly became our favorite way to celebrate a Sunday.
Last month, Bob shot his first axis deer and we now have 100 lbs of axis deer meat in our freezer. Of that 100 lbs, 17 lbs were backstrap. What I notice about axis is that it is a slightly different texture from whitetail and there’s a milder flavor. I hate the saying “It’s all good” because it’s a blasted lie unless you are referring to venison. I think it is all good.
Bob usually processes his own game, but we used a meat processor in Camp Wood to butcher and pack the axis deer. It made life easier since we were 4 hours from home. The favorite part of a deer is the backstrap. It doesn’t take much prep to make it tender. Bob had the butcher cut the backstrap into rounds so that we could make filets out of it.
Sunday evening we had family for dinner so Bob pulled a package of axis backstrap from the freezer to make his filet de mignon axis style. The first thing he does is slice the chunk of meat into 2″ pieces which he doctors with Ralph’s Fajita Seasoning and pound it with our aluminum tenderizing hammer.
Then he wraps the tenderized meat with peppered bacon; Bob likes peppered bacon because it adds just a little more umppphhh. He uses toothpicks to pin the bacon to the filet. I like the colored toothpicks which probably have some kind of toxic dye in them, but they look more festive. That’s my sole contribution to the recipe.
Bob’s son Bobby ran to Walmart to buy colored toothpicks for us Sunday night and thought they were in the home goods department since they are colorful. Forty five minutes after he left, when we assumed he’d ditched us for a better offer, he burst into the front door and exclaimed, “You’ll never believe where they keep these colored toothpicks!” He nodded a little sadly when Bob answered, “Near the paper plates, right?”
Anyway, the food may or not be suspect for use of the colored toothpicks, but I am much happier when I look at them.
Bob puts the meat under the broiler for about 6 minutes on each side. He lets it rest for 3-4 minutes while we take and fill family drink orders and load the table. He’s careful not to overcook because venison hates that. Even with bacon wrapped around it, it dries out and gets leathery.
This is such a fast way to cook meat that we have everything ready to eat when it comes out of the oven.
No steak sauce needed. The meat is just mwah! Tender and flavorful. I usually think about it an hour or so later with fondness. That’s just me and probably why I will never be a size 3. I love to eat and especially love to eat Bob’s Filet de mignon axis.
(By the way, National Filet de Mignon day is today-August 13. Just in case you wanted to know.)