Peppered Beef Tenderloin
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© Paden Reich
This is one of my husband’s specialties, and I’ve stolen it from him. Beef tenderloin is a classy cut of meat that I serve for company or holidays. Since it has very little fat, you have to supply the flavor, which is where the pepper and seasoning come in. Otherwise, the oven does all the hard work. I portion into half- to three-quarter- inch-thick slices and serve with either sautéed asparagus, spinach, or haricots verts. Also, a dollop of creamy horseradish panna cotta supplies an extra bit of flair that makes each bite heavenly. Tom made this for my parents on our first Christmas together. He was incredibly nervous. But as long as it’s not overcooked, the tenderloin is mistake-proof, as evidenced by my parents’ reaction. They talked about that dinner for years afterward. “Do you remember Tom’s incredible beef tenderloin?” “Tom, if you make that again, you must have us over.” He did make it again, and they enjoyed it many more times, as will you.
1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Coarsely grind the peppercorns in a spice grinder or coffee grinder. Combine the mustard, butter, and 2 tablespoons of the parsley in a small bowl, stirring until blended. Rub the mustard mixture over the beef. Sprinkle the beef with the salt and ground peppercorns.
2. Place the beef on a wire rack in a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the beef until a meat thermometer inserted in the center registers 120°F, about 30 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to broil, and broil until browned and a meat thermometer inserted in the center registers 145°F (medium-rare) or to desired degree of doneness, about 3 minutes. Remove from the oven, and let rest about 10 minutes. Transfer the beef to a cutting board, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons parsley. Serve with the Savory Horseradish Panna Cotta, sprinkling with black pepper.
The beef can be prepared up through Step 1, covered, and refrigerated for up to a day in advance.
5 tablespoons mixed peppercorns
3 tablespoons Dijon muistard
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 1/2 pounds center-cut beef tenderloin, trimmed and tied if uneven
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Hands on time
1 Hours, 5 Minutes