John, raised on a beef farm in southwestern Virginia, is a dedicated carnivore. For health reasons, we do not eat nearly as much red meat as we used to, but when we do we always choose lean cuts of the best quality we can find and cook them carefully so that the cow from which they came will not have died in vain.
The advent of a real butcher shop just down the street from us in Fredericksburg has made it easier to find superior cuts of beef. The Olde Towne Butcher has become a Mecca for meat-lovers in the area. It also offers the highest quality pork, lamb, free-range poultry, a great variety of delicious sausages made on the premises, and fresh milk in glass bottles from near-by cows. Across the street from the local farmer’s market, it is certainly one of the blessings of living in Fredericksburg.
These are two of our favorite recipes.
Very Easy Beef Tenderloin
2 pound center-cut beef tenderloin, bound with twine
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Remove tenderloin from fridge and let it warm to room temperature.
Preheat Oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
Rub salt and freshly-ground black pepper into all sides of the tenderloin and then coat it with the olive oil.
Place tenderloin on a roasting rack in a pan and place in oven.
After ten minutes, reduce heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and cook for another twenty-five minutes.
Remove from oven and let rest for ten minutes before slicing and serving. It should be medium rare to rare.
Sufficient for four normal people or two dedicated carnivores.
We have found this a good way to prepare steaks that are over an inch thick.
Take the steaks out of the fridge and let them warm to room temperature.
Rub salt and freshly ground pepper all over the steaks.
Pre-heat oven to 225 degrees.
Place steaks on a tray and place in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove and brown in a non-stick pan over high heat for one minute on each side. They should be rare to medium rare.