This recipe from the December 2000 issue of Canadian Living was served in the posh dining cars of the Royal Canadian Pacific! It is definitely dinner party fare but also good enough for your family!
- 4 lbs beef tenderloin, premium oven roast
- 3 tablespoons black peppercorns, coarsely crushed
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups diced shallots
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
- 3 1⁄4 cups beef stock
- 1⁄2 cup dry red wine
- 1⁄4 cup brandy
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- Sprinkle beef with peppercorns & salt, pressing to adhere.
- Heat oil in roasting pan, over medium-high heat; sear beef all over.
- Roast in preheated 375F oven for about 55 minutes or until meat thermometer inserted in centre registers 140F (for medium-rare); transfer to cutting board, tent with foil & let stand for 15 minutes before carving.
- Sauce: Heat 2 tbsp pf the butter in a saucepan over medium heat; cook shallots, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until softened.
- Stir in sugar & cook for an additional 10 minutes or until shallots are golden & caramelized; stir in garlic & thyme and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Add stock, wine, brandy & bay leaf, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes or until sauce is reduced to about 2 cups.
- Whisk cornstarch with 1 tbsp water, then whisk into sauce and boil until smooth & thickened; discard bay leaf.
- Add roasting pan juices to sauce, bring to a boil, then whisk in remaining butter; serve with roast.
I have made this a few times now. The first time I made only the sauce (see 7/10 review below). Yesterday I made a 4# tenderloin & sauce with one major change. Per my BIL/pro-chef, I used an 450°F convection oven temperature for 30 minutes for a perfect medium rare result. BTW the sauce & beef can be made ahead of time. I did this the day before. If doing do, sear the beef on the stove top or grill, wrap tightly in foil and refrigerate for up to a day. 60 minutes prior to cooking, remove from the fridge & unwrap to warm up. Bake until desired doneness, let rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing. Before roasting I re-seasoned the beef with olive oil, rosemary, garlic powder, S&P.
7/09 Sauce review only: I seared my tenderloin on the outdoor grill and made the sauce recipe as suggested. It turned out great. I halved the recipe and made ahead with the intent on warming adding the cornstarch before serving then forgot to add the cornstarch and it was still wonderful. I would recommend for individual filet mignon as well.
Fantastic recipe! Used some inexpensive beef roast. The sauce is fabulous. I added steak cut mushrooms to the sauce (sauteed them briefly with the shallots for the last 5 minutes, right before you add the broth/wine etc.). Served with baby carrots and potatoes that I cut up, boiled, and then briefly tossed with butter, thyme, rosemary, and marjoram over med heat. Served with the gravy on the potatoes too, absolutely fantastic. This recipe is a definite keeper. Next time, I will do the beef in the crockpot however, for tenderness (that way I can still use a cheaper cut of beef).
Wow. Just superb. I did rub with smashed peppercorns (red, white and black). Otherwise followed recipe exactly and it was wonderful. Will make this again soon! Thanks for a great one.