Aphrodisiacs – food and beverages thought to inspire desire – are Valentine’s Day favorites. Among the best-known temptations: oysters, Champagne, caviar, and chocolate. This year, try something new by injecting romance into the menu with…yes, mustard. Celebrated for its aphrodisiac properties by many cultures, mustard’s bite will warm the body and boost the romantic temperature with every taste. From appetizer straight through to dessert, Dijon mustard pairs perfectly with other ‘love foods’ such as crunchy pine nuts, iron-rich beef filet, creamy mashed potatoes and even intense dark chocolate. I’m sharing my suggestion for a sexy and delicious dinner; a tender Filet Mignon with Silky Horseradish Dijon Sauce that is served with Cheddar Mashed Potatoes and steamed carrots.
Haven’t you seen enough candy and chocolate cookies, pies and cakes? I know I have. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love chocolate. I love cookies, pies and cakes too. But I’m sort of craving something to eat BEFORE those goodies and thought I would spend some time preparing a dish more suited for a Valentine’s dinner or any special dinner for that matter. Something easy enough to make at home and yet elegant enough to make it a special occasion. And not so heavy you won’t have room for one of those decadent treats after the main course either. I’ll be sharing a decadent treat this week too but like my mom always said, ‘You have to finish your dinner first, Barbara.’
If you don’t know already then I guess it’s time for me to share again. I LOVE mustard. I like hot dogs and burgers with any number of mustards and I’m always the one saying ‘hold the ketchup please.’ I even like it enough that I’ve made my own. When I was staying with friends while waiting for my new home to be completed, they were sort of in shock at my assortment. Regular, whole grain, champagne, honey mustard, port wine mustard, mustard with horseradish and more. So this recipe which includes mustard in both the mashed potatoes and the steak sauce was perfect. Not overpowering at all but a great spicy component that plays up the other flavors perfectly. I especially love Maille mustards and have worked with this company before; it’s a no brainer. It is simply the best. I could…wait, HAVE, eaten their whole grain mustard from a spoon. A real favorite of mine is their Dijonnaise; a prepared mix that is like having mayonnaise and a whole grain mustard mixed together with the added benefit of a squeeze bottle. They knew me when they did that!
This dish contains two different mustards; the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes has Maille Whole Grain Mustard mixed in with the cheese, butter and potatoes and the steak has a sauce made of Maille Horseradish mustard, yogurt, Worcestershire, paprika and red pepper. You could serve them separately but I liked them stacked and the combined flavors are fantastic. Make this for someone you love. If you haven’t won them over til now; I can almost guarantee this effort will seal the deal!
A Valentine Dinner – Filet Mignon with Horseradish Dijon Sauce and Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
Topped with a luscious, horseradish-flecked Dijon mustard sauce, this carnivore classic gets an extra aphrodisiac boost. Accompanied by Cheddar mashed potatoes for a comfort-food touch and grilled vegetables for added color, this impressive dish is very easy to prepare.
For the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
- 2 medium/large sized Yukon Gold potatoes peeled if desired, washed, and cubed
- Salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup of aged cheddar cheese, grated
- 1 tablespoon of Maille Old Style mustard
- 1/2 cup of cooking water from the boiling potatoes (carefully remove while boiling the potatoes and reserve)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Additional cheddar cheese and butter for serving (optional)
For the Filet Mignon
- 2 beef tenderloin steaks (4-6 0z each)
- 3 tablespoons of Maille® Horseradish mustard
- 2 tablespoons of plain Greek yogurt
- 3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
- 1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/8 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper (optional)
- Two pinches of salt
To Prepare the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes:
- Fill a medium size pot with cold water and one tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook uncovered for 12-16 minutes, depending on the size of the potato pieces that were sliced. To test for doneness, poke with a fork. If the fork inserts easily, the potatoes are done.
- While the potatoes are cooking, prepare a mixing bowl/stand mixer with the other ingredients. Add the butter, grated cheese, Maille Old Style mustard and 1/4 cup of the reserved cooking water to the bowl. When cooked, drain and add the potatoes to the bowl. Beat with a paddle attachment or hand mixer/masher.
- If the mixture is too dry, add additional cooking water to loosen the mixture. Blend until creamy. Taste and add salt and freshly ground pepper. Add more grated cheese and/or butter prior to serving, if desired.
To Prepare the Steaks:
- Grill the steaks to the desired sear. Remove from grill and tent with tin foil and let them rest for 3-4 minutes.
- While grilling, whisk the remaining ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside until the steak is ready to serve. Add salt.
- Mound potatoes on the plate and top with a pat of butter and some of the shredded cheddar. Place the filet on top of the potatoes and dollop the filet with a heaping tablespoon or two of sauce prior to serving.
- Sprinkle with additional paprika for garnish.
I was provided with samples of several Maille mustards but all commentary is my own.