Thursday, January 25, 2018

Spice Rubbed Roast Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Sauce

This year, for New Years, we made a tenderloin. We had never made tenderloin before and were extremely pleased with how great this came out. The sauce took quite a bit of work and was the best wine reduction sauce we had ever had. Looking back, for the amount of work it took, we would probably just go with a simpler horseradish cream sauce next time, but it was great to have for the special occasion! We do like our meat more on the done side and less on the bleedy side and this came out beautifully with melt in your mouth meat. For those more keen on the rarer meat, can definitely take it out of the oven earlier and it will be more rare than what we made.
We paired the dish with some Black Pepper and Herb Mashed Red Potatoes, the recipe for that will be in the next post.

We used a bottle of shiraz for the red wine sauce reduction. We omitted the mushrooms from the sauce..because Alona doesn't like em. The sauce was really good, but if you are making it same day, keep in mind that it does take at least a good hour to make it.

Here's the original recipe:


Cut up and ready to eat!

The wine reduction sauce

Wine Reduction cooking

Herbed beef prepared the night before. 


For the beef
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh thyme
1 Tbs. ground fennel seed
1/2 tsp. caraway seeds, coarsely ground
Kosher salt
Freshly cracked black pepper
2 2-1/2-lb. beef butt tenderloins, trimmed
For the sauce
2 Tbs. unsalted butter
1 Tbs. olive oil or canola oil
1/4 cup thinly sliced shallot (1 medium)
1/4 tsp. granulated sugar
Kosher salt
3 large sprigs fresh thyme
1 tsp. cracked black peppercorns
1 750-ml bottle dry, hearty red wine,such as Shiraz or Zinfandel
2 cups lower-salt beef broth
1 Tbs. all-purpose flour
Freshly ground black pepper


Season the beef the night before.
1. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, thyme, fennel, caraway, 1 Tbs. salt, and 1-1/2 tsp. pepper.
2. Pat the tenderloins dry with paper towels and coat them with the spice mixture, using your hands to spread it evenly; it will sparsely cover the meat.

Roast the beef
1. If you’ve seasoned the beef ahead of time, remove it from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for about an hour before roasting.
2. Meanwhile, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.
3. Arrange the roasts on a flat rack on a large rimmed baking sheet. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center reads 120°F for rare , 125°F to 130°F for medium rare, or 135°F for medium, 40 to 50 minutes.

Make the sauce
1. Melt 1 Tbs. of the butter and the oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot, sugar, and 1/4 tsp. salt.
2. Cook, stirring often, until soft and beginning to brown, about 6 minutes. Add the thyme, peppercorns, and half of the wine.
3. Simmer briskly until the wine reduces and just covers the solids, 10 to 15 minutes.
4. Add the remaining wine and reduce again until the wine just covers the solids, 10 to 12 minutes more.
5. Add the beef broth and simmer until reduced by half, about 15 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve set over a 1-quart measuring cup, pressing lightly on the solids.
6. If you have more than 1-1/2 cups liquid, return the sauce to the pan and simmer until reduced to 1-1/2 cups
7. Melt the remaining 1 Tbs. butter in a 1-quart saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking often, until smooth and light beige in color, about 1 minute. Slowly add the wine reduction, whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer and cook, whisking often, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

If the sauce was made ahead, heat gently in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, whisking a few times, until barely simmering.
Meanwhile, let the beef rest for 15 minutes before carving crosswise into thick slices. Slice only as much as you plan to serve right away (leftovers keep better unsliced). Spoon the sauce over each serving or pass at the table.

What we liked:

The tenderloin was spectacular. 

What we didn't like:

The sauce was probably not worth the time investment :) 

What Kaspian thought about it:

He was not into the meat. He did like the mashed potatoes though. Astrid LOVED the meat. 

Next time:

Try a horseradish cream sauce instead. 

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