This is a special occasion food, perhaps an idea to tuck away for a Valentine’s Day dinner or a loved one’s birthday. Beef tenderloin really does go on sale… not often, but when it does, I pick up a few pounds to tuck away in my freezer. It’s such a high quality cut of meat that it really doesn’t need much preparation and is pretty hard to screw up!
Today, all we’re doing is giving this tenderloin a simple dry rub and roasting it in the oven. Seriously, it’s as simple as that. Cascabel peppers have a rich flavor and mild heat (with the seeds removed) that stands up well to beef and blends well with high quality cocoa powder for a surprisingly complex, warm dry rub.
2 pounds beef tenderloin
4 dried Cascabel peppers, stems and seeds removed
1 heaping tablespoon good quality cocoa
Step 1) Grind Cascabel peppers into a fine powder in a small blender or clean coffee grinder. Add cocoa and combine well.
KRUPS F203 Electric Spice and Coffee Grinder with Stainless Steel Blades, Black
Step 2) Rub pepper and cocoa mixture all over both sides of the beef tenderloin. Place tenderloin in a pan lined with a roasting rack and allow to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Step 3) Roast tenderloin in a preheated, 425 degree oven for 35 – 45 minutes until a meat thermometer registers 145 degrees (for medium-rare) or 160 degrees (for medium, my personal preference). When desired meat temperature is reached, remove from oven and cover meat loosely with aluminum foil for 5 minutes. Allowing the meat to rest prevents juices from running everywhere when you slice the tenderloin!
Step 4) After 5 minutes, cut tenderloin across the grain into 1 1/2 inch thick slices. Serve immediately with a green salad and the starch (potatoes, yams, or perhaps squash) of your choice.