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Jamie Purviance

Filet Mignon Steaks with Port, Cherries, and Thyme

  • People

    Serves 4

  • Prep Time

    35 mins

  • Grilling Time

    7 to 9 mins

Serves 4
Prep Time
35 mins
Grilling Time
7 to 9 mins

the Ingredients

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  • 4 filet mignon steaks, each about 8 ounces and 1 to 1¼ inches thick
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground whole peppercorns (grind in a spice mill or use a mortar and pestle)
  • 2½ tablespoons minced fresh thyme, divided
  • Kosher salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • ½ cup finely chopped shallots
  • ¾ cup dried tart cherries
  • ¾ cup tawny port
  • 12 ounces sweet fresh cherries, such as Bing, each cut in half or quarters (about 2¼ cups)
  • ¾ cup low-sodium beef broth
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Special Equipment

  • spice mill or mortar and pestle


  • 01 Prepare the grill for direct cooking over high heat (450° to 550°F). If you're using a charcoal grill, keep a small part of the charcoal grate clear of briquettes as a safety zone of indirect heat.
  • 02 Pat the steaks dry, brush them with the oil, and season them evenly with the coarsely ground peppercorns, 1 tablespoon of the thyme, and 1 teaspoon kosher salt, pressing the spices into the meat. Allow the steaks to stand at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes before grilling.
  • 03 Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet on the side burner of the grill or on the stove, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and cook until they begin to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the remaining 1½ tablespoons thyme and stir for 10 seconds. Stir in the dried cherries and port (be careful of a flame up) and bring to a boil. Continue to boil until the liquid is reduced by about half, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the fresh cherries and broth and boil until the cherries are tender and about one-half of the liquid is cooked away, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat. Season the sauce with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Set aside. 
  • 04 Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the steaks over direct high heat, with the lid closed, until cooked to your desired doneness, 7 to 9 minutes for medium rare, turning once or twice (if flare-ups occur, move the steaks temporarily over indirect heat). Remove the steaks from the grill and let rest for 3 to 5 minutes. While the steaks rest, finish the sauce.
  • 05 Warm the sauce in the skillet over medium heat just until hot. Remove from the heat. Add remaining 3 tablespoons butter and whisk butter is absorbed into the sauce. Serve the steaks warm with the cherry sauce spooned on top. 

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