Holiday Recipe: Herb-Crusted Beef Tenderloin

A beef tenderloin covered in thyme, garlic, and Parmesan, makes for an impressive centerpiece on a holiday table. But this creation by KCET show Cook's Country is actually quite simple to make. Just give your self plenty of time: begin this recipe 2 hours before you plan to put the roast in the oven. The tenderloin can be trimmed, tied, rubbed with the salt mixture, and refrigerated up to 24 hours in advance; make sure to bring the roast back to room temperature before putting it into the oven. Then it's as simple as serving to a grateful, and impressed, crowd.

Photo courtesy Cook's Country
Photo courtesy Cook's Country

Herb-Crusted Beef Tenderloin
Serves 12 to 16
1 whole beef tenderloin (5 to 6 pounds), trimmed and patted dry
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
2 teaspoons sugar
2 slices hearty white sandwich bread, torn into pieces
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves, plus 2 tablespoons
1 1/4 cups Grated Parmesan cheese
6 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced

Tuck tail of tenderloin under and tie roast. Combine 1 tablespoon salt, 1 tablespoon pepper, and sugar in small bowl and rub all over tenderloin. Transfer tenderloin to wire rack set on rimmed baking sheet and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.

Meanwhile, pulse bread in food processor to fine crumbs. Transfer bread crumbs to medium bowl and toss in 2 tablespoons parsley, 2 teaspoons thyme, 1/2 cup Parmesan, and 2 tablespoons oil until evenly combined. Wipe out food processor and process remaining 6 tablespoons parsley, 2 tablespoons thyme, 3/4 cup cheese, 4 tablespoons oil, and garlic until smooth paste forms. Transfer herb paste to small bowl.

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Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Roast tenderloin 20 minutes and remove from oven. Using scissors, cut and remove twine. Coat tenderloin with herb paste followed by bread-crumb topping. Roast until thickest part of meat registers about 130 degrees (for medium-rare) and topping is golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. (If topping browns before meat reaches preferred internal temperature, lightly cover with foil for balance of roasting time and remove while roast rests.) Let roast rest, uncovered, for 30 minutes on wire rack. Transfer to cutting board and carve. Serve.

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