Nothing says special occasion like beef tenderloin, but this recipe could be the easiest beef tenderloin you ever make. It requires minimal amount of time and toil to assemble and season, and then the oven concentrates the flavors. It cooks for 40 to 50 minutes—enough time to make a salad, set the table, or just relax and enjoy the appetizing aromas filling your kitchen.
Read Quick Prep, Easy Roast for six additional holiday-worthy roasts, including Spice-Crusted Roast Pork Tenderloin and Rack of Lamb with Ancho-Honey Glaze. And, for more beef tenderloin recipes, visit the Guide to Christmas.
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.
In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, rosemary, fennel seed, salt, and pepper. Stir to make a paste. Pat the beef dry with paper towels and rub the paste all over the surface of the meat. If necessary, tie the roast at 1-1/2-inch intervals.
Put the roast on a rack on a small, rimmed baking sheet or in a shallow roasting pan. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center reads 120°F for rare, 125° to 130°F for medium rare, or 135°F for medium, 40 to 50 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the crème fraîche, mustard, and lemon juice. Season lightly with salt to taste.
Transfer the roast to a carving board (preferably with a well for collecting juices) and let it rest, uncovered, for 10 to 15 minutes before carving it into 1/3- to 1/2-inch-thick slices. Serve the beef, passing the mustard sauce at the table.
Make Ahead Tips
The roast can be seasoned and refrigerated up to 4 hours before roasting.
The beef and mustard sauce are both excellent cold, use leftovers for roast beef sandwiches.
nutrition information (per serving):
based on eight servings;
sat fat g
Photo: Scott Phillips