A Holiday Feast Before the Holidays

A few days ago, Bf and I got a big hunk ‘o meat.

Yeah, that’s a nice chunk of beef right there. We hadn’t had steak in a while, so we decided to go all out and cook a Caesar Beef Tenderloin from December’s Bon Appetit. You know how I love Bon Appetit (you can see that post here). This meal screams “HOLIDAYS!!!” and would be a great meal to cook for a group of friends.

I started by salt and peppering my hunk o’ beef. She was about a three pounder. Maaaybe a four pounder… I don’t know.

Then wrap the steak in plastic and refrigerate overnight. I didn’t have overnight so I just let it sit in the fridge for about 4 hours. I removed the steak 2 hours before I was ready to cook it so that it could come to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Then, it was time to get my crust ready.

I added:

  • 4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2/3 cup fine fresh breadcrumbs made from day-old white bread (I used breadcrumbs)
  • 2/3 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained, finely chopped
  • 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
to the food processor.

I let those ingredients pulse until they were mixed.

I untied my steak.

And got started coating the tenderloin in the caesar mixture.

It was a messy job, but someone had to do it.

Generously and evenly spread the mixture over the top of the tenderloin.

Like I said… it was a messy job.

Now this is the part that I didn’t do, but wish that I did: set tenderloin on a rack inside a baking sheet. I just set mine on a baking sheet and it didn’t crisp up on the bottom like it should have. So ,the rack gets it crisped up all over.

Roast until crust is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of tenderloin registers 110°–115° for rare and 120°–125° for medium-rare, 30–40 minutes. I put mine in until the temp was about 120 and it was perfect.

Transfer to a carving board. Let rest for 20 minutes. Cut into 1/2″ thick slices. Be careful of that delicious crust!

Uh, yeah.

Looks like a Christmas Roast Beast.

Now, tell me that that doesn’t make you want to have your friends over for a meal this holiday season. Does it not? I will be making this again for my pals for sure. It’s a keeper. Even Santa would like it.

For a printable version of this recipe (and to be redirected to the Bon Appetit site) click here. 

Now I Can Say I Have Fed a Tarpon

In case you are wondering what a Tarpon is… here is a definition:

Megalops (the family name) are considered one of the great saltwater game fishes. They are prized not only because of their great size but also because of the fight that they put up and their spectacular leaping ability. Megalops are bony fish and their meat is not desirable so most Megalops are released after they are caught. There are numerous tournaments around the year that are focused on catching Megalops.

In addition to that, they are also Bf’s dream fish. He has wanted to catch a Tarpon since the day I met him. So when we found out that you can feed Tarpon at Robbie’s Marina, we were in.

We ate lunch at The Hungry Tarpon before and then headed over to the shed to get a bucket of fish (and maybe some t-shirts, koozies, and other odd memorabilia).

I was shocked at the shear number of tarpon out there at the dock. There were hundreds!

They leapt out of the water to grab the fish from your hand. I was yanking my hand back as fast as possible. I was hearing people talking about getting bit by the Tarpon… and I was not having that.

Pssst… Look to the left of the picture at the pelican.

 

They were magnificent. Its no wonder that they are highly desired game fish. The way they jumped out of the water was incredible.

Just look at that. Even though its blurry.

This was the closest that Bf has ever gotten to catching a Tarpon. He was pleased.

Bf wasn’t as afraid as me. He got a lot closer.

Now, Jack… he was all in there. He was practically touching the Tarpon.

Look at that mouth!

The Tarpon were the main show… but I couldn’t help but notice who was just wanting a lil’ attention on the side line.

As soon as I saw the pelican, I gave an appropriate, loving “Awwwwww!” and promptly threw a fish its way. I took one step and saw a big sign that said “No Feeding the Pelicans.” Whoops… well, he looked hungry. And he was cute.

Robbies and The Hungry Tarpon were definitely worth checking out. If you are ever in Islamorada you can feed a Tarpon and take some memorable pictures… and try not to get bitten.

You may even see my pelican.