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Peppercorn-Crusted Beef Tenderloin

May/June 2009

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This super-simple recipe covers beef tenderloin in a blend of cracked black, white and green peppercorns. Though it takes moments to prepare, since it's beef tenderloin it's perfect for a special occasion. Look for peppercorns in the bulk spice section so you can buy just what you need. The recipe will also work with black ones only.


Peppercorn-Crusted Beef Tenderloin

Makes: 12 servings

Active Time:

Total Time:

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons whole green peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole white peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 3 pounds trimmed beef tenderloin, preferably center-cut (see Note)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

Preparation

  1. Preheat a gas grill (with all burners lit) to 400°F or build a fire in a charcoal grill and let it burn down to medium heat (about 400°F).
  2. Coarsely crack peppercorns with a small heavy skillet (or saucepan), in a mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder.
  3. Tie kitchen string around tenderloin in several places so the meat will hold its shape as it cooks. Rub with oil, sprinkle with salt and coat with the cracked peppercorns.
  4. If using a gas grill, turn off one burner (leaving 1 to 2 burners lit, depending on your grill). If using a charcoal grill, move the coals to one side. Place the tenderloin on the unheated side of the grill rack. Close the lid and roast undisturbed for 20 minutes.
  5. Rotate the tenderloin 180 degrees, cover and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat registers 140°F (for medium-rare), 15 to 35 minutes more. Transfer to a clean cutting board and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Equipment: Kitchen string
  • Note: You'll need 3 pounds of trimmed tenderloin for the beef tenderloin recipe. Ask your butcher to remove the extra fat, silver skin and the chain (a lumpy, fat-covered piece of meat that runs along the tenderloin). If you buy untrimmed tenderloin, start with about 3 1/2 pounds, then use a sharp knife to trim the silver skin, fat and chain.

Nutrition

Per serving: 179 calories; 8 g fat (3 g sat, 4 g mono); 67 mg cholesterol; 1 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 24 g protein; 0 g fiber; 222 mg sodium; 314 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Zinc (28% daily value).

Exchanges: 3 lean meat


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