PREP TIME: 20 minutes | COOK TIME: 3 hours
The most tender area of beef, with the most mild flavor, is the tenderloin located in the middle of the back between the sirloin and the rib of a cow. The tenderloin can be cooked whole, in smaller sections like Chateaubriand, or cut into individual filet steaks.
Beef tenderloin is perfectly suited to cooking Sous Vide. Sure, it can be cut into individual steaks but there is nothing more impressive than a whole beef tenderloin perfectly cooked on a buffet. Cooking the tenderloin whole also offers the most bang for the buck and considering it’s the most expensive cut of beef available, I like to get the most bang! Due to the shape of the tenderloins “tail” I like to fold it under and tie the whole roast to make a nice consistent shape which looks better but also, more importantly, cooks evenly.
One downside is this expensive meat is, in general, beef tenderloin has very little intramuscular fat, meaning they are relatively flavorless so I like to add fresh tallow (rendered beef suet/fat) to pick up where mother nature left off.
The only issues in preparing a whole tenderloin is whether your SV1 water bath is big enough to accommodate the long roast. The second being your vacuum sealer - is your chamber big enough? If not, you might want to portion your tenderloin or VacMaster’s lower priced suction machines are perfect for packaging larger cuts of meat and the roll bags can accommodate almost any size!
VacMasters, do try this recipe - it’s incredibly easy, so very delicious and your family and friends will think you’re a culinary rockstar!
1 whole Beef Tenderloin, trimmed of all fat and silverskin
6 sprigs of Thyme, fresh
Kosher salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
1. Fill and preheat your sous vide container or stock pot with water (according to specifications) to your preferred temperature. My preference for whole tenderloin is 131°F but below is a good listing is for general temperatures:
Rare: 120°F / 49°C
Medium Rare: 134°F / 56.5°C
Medium: 140°F / 60°C
Medium Well: 150°F / 65.5°C
Well Done: 160°F / 71°C.
2. Season the beef with kosher salt and black pepper
3. Select the appropriate sized pouch that will hold the tenderloin
Gently place the tenderloin with the fresh thyme sprigs and 3 oz of the beef tallow (see recipe) into pouch
4. Vacuum seal beef
5. Submerge in preheated SV1 for 3 hours
Carefully remove cooked beef from the immersion circulator bath
Remove the tenderloin from pouch. Using paper towel or similar pat the beef dry
6. Heat a large cast iron pan or similar over high heat until smoking hot
Rub the tenderloin with the remaining 1 oz of beef tallow and season generously with more salt and pepper
Carefully sear the meat quickly and evenly until all sides are well browned
7. Remove seared beef from pan, and let me meat rest for a few minutes, cut away the string and slice
Enjoy and Happy Cooking!