Sunday, February 15, 2015

Beef Tenderloin Roast in a Ruby Port Reduction

Over the course of the past few months, I have gone back to the east side of the state to spend some time with my Dad.  Conveniently, there is a wonderful butcher shop called The Village Market.  It is a magical place to shop if you are a cook.

The Market sells trimmed and tied beef tenderloins that will go on sale for $6.99-$7.99/lb.  When I was back in Grosse Pointe a few weeks ago, I picked up three of these beauties.  When I got back to GR, I cut the tenderloins in half, sealed them and put them into our chest freezer.  The past few weekends I have been experimenting with new recipes.  For Valentine's Day, I decided to try a recipe that was a mix of a beef tenderloin and a filet mignon recipe I have made in the past.  Here are the details:

- 1 beef tenderloin, 1.5-2lbs (this is half of a traditional beef tenderloin)
- 1 cup (8 oz.) ruby port
- 1 cup (8 oz.) dry white wine
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 oz. drained capers (about half a bottle of capers)
- olive oil


About an hour before you are going to put the tenderloin into the oven, take it out of the refrigerator and allow it to stand at room temperature.  

While the beef is warming up, our the port and the white wine into a saucepan.  Reduce the mixture until you have between 2/3 and 3/4 of a cup of liquid.  Once the wine mixture is reduced, set aside for use later.

Preheat your oven to 450F.  Place the beef tenderloin into a cast iron skillet and rub the beef with olive oil.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Once the oven has reached 450F, place the roast into the oven and cook to desired doneness.  I like to take the roast out when the internal temperature has risen to 125F (medium rare).

When the roast is done, remove it from the oven and place it on a cutting board.  Lightly cover the roast in aluminum foil and allow it to rest for 10 minutes.

Add the balsamic vinegar to the reduced wine.  Pour this mixture into the iron skillet and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits.  Boil the mixture until it has a sauce consistency, 2-3 minutes.  Reduce the heat to low and add the butter.  Whisk the mixture until the butter is melted. Once the butter is melted, add the capers.  Just before slicing the beef, pour any accumulated juices from the roast into the iron skillet.

Slice the beef into 1 inch thick slices and serve immediately.  Gently spoon the sauce over the beef and enjoy.

Cook's Notes:

I have made a ruby port reduction before, but it was for a filet mignon recipe.  I thought that I could make this reduction and spoon it over the beef.  I was not disappointed.  The results were amazing.  

As for the reduction, the original recipe I had wrote that the wine mixture would be reduced to 2/3 of a cup in "8 minutes."  In reality, it takes between 20-25 minutes.  At the 15 minute mark of reducing, I started to pour the reduction into a Pyrex measuring cup to see how much more I needed to reduce the wine.  

As for knowing the temperature of the tenderloin, your kitchen is not complete without a remote sensing thermometer.  You can pick one up at Bed Bath and Beyond, or just about any specialty kitchen store.  Once you have one, you will wonder how you cooked a roast in the past.  A link to a description of the thermometer I use can be found here.  I swear by this gadget.

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