Compound butter is simply a fancy term for any type of flavored butter. We seem to have a bit of a garlic theme going this week at FoodieLawyer, so we whipped up a compound butter with garlic and herbs, and served some of the compound butter over grilled filet mignon. Truly decadent.
You can add a wide range of different ingredients to your compound butter and there are scores of great recipes online. For steaks, we prefer a simple mixture of garlic, herbs and salt and pepper.
The butter needs to be softened. In Texas in August, where the air conditioning struggles to keep the house bearable, the butter softens in no time at all.
Mince or press a few cloves of garlic.
We also add herbs to our compound butter. Any herbs you may have around will work. We’ve used parsley, basil, thyme and oregano. We had some leftover parsley in the fridge, so that’s what we used for this batch. If you don’t have fresh herbs, dried ones will also work.
Salt and pepper are the final ingredients. We typically cook with unsalted butter, so this needs a generous pinch of salt.
Mash up all the ingredients into the butter to make sure that the garlic and herbs are well distributed.
Now for the fun part – wrap the compound butter in plastic wrap, form it into a log, and keep it in the freezer. Start by placing the butter mixture on a sheet of plastic wrap, then fold one side over the butter so you can roll it up.
Still rolling and shaping.
The final product, ready to go into the freezer, where it will keep for several months. In addition to steaks, compound butter is delicious on any sort of fish. It also takes corn on the cob to a whole new culinary place.
Tonight, to compliment our delicious garlic butter, we’re having filet mignon. Before you grill any steak, you should rest it at room temperature for a half hour or so.
Generously add salt and pepper right before you put the steaks on the grill. Some say that if you salt the steaks too early, it draws moisture from the steak and prevents the steaks from developing a nice crust.
The steaks grill on the first side for approximately 6 minutes. Give them a half turn rotation after three minutes so that you have nice grill marks.
While the steak is grilling, let’s check the temperature (of the air) just for fun. This photo was taken at about 7:30 p.m. It’s hot!
After six minutes, the steaks are ready to turn.
The steaks cook for another 4 to 6 minutes, depending on how you prefer your steak. (But if you’re having a filet well done, shame on you!)
The garlic compound butter is now frozen. Cut a few disks of butter-heaven to place on the filets, re-wrap the remainder and return it to the freezer.
Your steak should always rest for at least five minutes after you take it off the grill. This is the perfect time to add the compound butter. We usually tent the steaks on a plate with foil while they are resting (and while we are finishing up the side dishes for the meal).
The final product, ready to serve. Sure, butter is not the healthiest of ingredients, but if consumed in moderation, it’s well worth the extra calories. Portion control is key – we ended up splitting one of the steaks between us, and we can have the other as a leftover later in the week.
- 1 stick (half cup) of butter (we use unsalted butter)
- 3-4 garlic cloves, pressed or chopped
- 1 Tablespoon fresh herbs, chopped (parsley, oregano, basil, whatever you have on hand, or 1/2 Tablespoon dried herbs if that’s all you have)
Add the butter to a small bowl, cut the butter up with a knife, and rest at room temperature until the butter is soft, about an hour. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Lay a piece of plastic wrap on the counter, spoon the butter mixture on the the plastic, and wrap the butter into a log. This will keep in the freezer for months.