Preparing a Fillet of Beef

Removing Fat, Membrane and Gristle

  1. Place the meat on a board with the rounded, neater side of the fillet uppermost.
  2. Start cutting and pulling away the fat from the wide end.
  3. Cut away all the gristle and fat that lie along one side of the fillet.
  4. Cut off the large lump of fat that is attached to the wide end.
  5. Turn the fillet over and pull and cut away the strip of fat and gristle.
  6. Return the fillet to its original position. Using a sharp knife, remove the shiny layer of membrane. Your beef should now be completely free of fat, membrane and gristle.

Preparing the Fillet for Roasting

  1. Neatly secure any loose ends of the fillet with kitchen string. For more even cooking, fold the thin end of the fillet under itself and tie it.
  2. If you do not want to roast the fillet whole, you can divide it into smaller pieces:
  • The thin end - small filet mignon steaks
  • The centre - medium-size tournedos
  • The wide end - a small joint or Châteaubriand

Châteaubriand is made by wrapping the meat from the wide end in a clean cloth, and flattening it to half its original thickness.