Beef tenderloin recipes do not have to be complicated. Today's recipe calls for just a few simple ingredients and it will rival any steak on any restaurant menu.
Let's go over a few tips about steak cuts and beef tenderloin. The USDA top three grades of beef are prime, choice and select. Only about 2-3 percent of the beef sold in the U.S. is prime, which also has the most marbling.
What is marbling? When choosing your steaks, pay close attention to the marbling. Marbling is the little flakes of fat within the muscle. When steaks are cooked at a high temperature, the marbling melts, creating a tender, juicy steak. The more marbling a steak has, the better it will taste.
The beef tenderloin is a non weight-bearing muscle, which receives very little exercise and is why it's so tender. There is only 4-6 pounds of beef tenderloin per steer, which is another reason it's so expensive.
Beef Tenderloin with Marsala and Shallot Pan Jus
2 beef tenderloin steaks
Fresh cracked pepper
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon tomato paste
1/4 cup Marsala wine
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 small shallot, minced and set aside
1 tablespoon butter, set aside
Mix sauce ingredients (except for shallot and butter) in a bowl and set aside.
Preheat pan on high. Add 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Add steaks and lower heat to medium. Turn steaks after 3-5 minutes. To sear edges, set steaks on their side. Check doneness of the other side after 3-5 minutes. The steaks will continue to cook once you remove them — a term known as carry-over cooking.
Remove steaks, and using the same pan, add diced shallots to pan. Scrape the meat off the bottom of the pan. Add sauce mix and turn pan back to high. Cook until it has reduced by half. Next, finish the sauce and add 1 tablespoon of butter to the sauce. This will help thicken it a bit more and give the sauce a nice shine.
Serve on top homemade french fries and top steak with your homemade sauce. When I served this steak for our neighbors, they said they could have practically cut it with their finger.
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