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Beef tenderloin is the most tender cut of beef. This is where we get filet mignon, which is made from the very tip of the pointy end of the tenderloin. There is also very little fat within the tenderloin, making it a very lean cut.
What is beef tenderloin?
Beef tenderloin is a very tender cut of beef, available as steaks or kept whole as a roast. It is very mild and relatively lean with very little marbling. Like all beef cuts, the tenderloin is high in protein and contains a significant amount of the B vitamins. It’s also comparatively low in fat and a source for minerals.
How to prepare beef tenderloin?
Start by trimming your beef tenderloin if it is not already trimmed for you (in most cases it’ll be). A beef tenderloin is a long cut of beef that comes to a point at one end. In order to get the beef to cook evenly it’s important to tie it up and make it as uniform in shape as possible. Using butcher’s twine you can easily tie it up. Tuck the long pointed end up into the thicker part of the tenderloin creating a uniform cylinder shape.
Next, if you’d like to give your tenderloin a delicious crust on the outside, leave it in the fridge overnight unwrapped. This will dry out the surface, but it’s an optional step.
Cooking beef tenderloin
In terms of seasonings, high-end steaks generally don’t need much more than kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. But because beef tenderloin is so lean, it can also benefit from a quick dunk in a flavourful marinade. You can also serve it with a red wine pan sauce or a buttery, silky béarnaise. Now, if you want to sear the tenderloin, heat some olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet and sear it on all sides for about 3 to 5 minutes per side. Then roast the beef tenderloin, cook it at 425ºF for about 20-25 minutes. Don’t forget, beef tenderloin dries out if you overcook it. So, however you decide to prepare it, keep in mind that it generally tastes best at medium rare.