Music: Counting Crows – Round Here
John and Kristen are getting married! Woot woot. We had them over for dinner to celebrate their engagement and hear their tale. We are very excited for their wedding and look forward to it with much anticipation.
To celebrate this occasion we turned to the William-Sonoma winter catalog. I never noticed they showed recipes before! (I’m a little behind). Needless to say the recipe for Potato-Leek Gratin was extraordinary. Again, I changed a few things and I will show you what I did. This meal served 4 people.
We also recently watched Food, Inc. Have you seen it? You should. It’s contains information we already know but continue to ignore. That being said, we did everything we could with this meal to buy local and organic produce. It cost a great deal more, granted, but I felt like I was controlling what I was putting in my body. I knew, down to the farm, where the brussel sprouts and cream came from. It was quite liberating.
Bacon-Wrapped Beef Tenderloin
What you’ll need:
2.5 lbs. beef tenderloin (we ordered a piece of chateaubriand), salt and pepper, 1 lb. of bacon, 2 boxes of quartered Cremini mushrooms, 4 cloves of sliced garlic, ¼ cup of vermouth.
- Lay 2 overlapping sheets of plastic wrap, measuring a few inches longer than the beef tenderloin, on a work surface.
- Season the beef with salt and pepper.
- Place the roast in the center of the plastic wrap and wrap a bacon slice around one end of the roast. Continue to wrap the roast with the remaining bacon slices, slightly overlapping them, to cover the entire roast. Tie roast with butcher twine.
- Wrap in another piece of plastic wrap and chill for one hour.
- Preheat an oven to 400ºF.
- Remove the roast from the plastic wrap.
- In a fry pan over medium heat, warm the oil.
- Add the roast and sear one side for 3 minutes.
- Then turn the roast and sear on the remaining 3 sides until the bacon fat is rendered and begins to crisp, about 3 minutes per side.
- Place mushroom in bottom of roasting pan with garlic, salt & pepper and vermouth.
- Transfer the meat to a roasting rack set over roast pan.
- Carefully pour fat from the pan over mushrooms.
- Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the roast registers 135ºF for medium-rare, about 30-40 minutes.
- Transfer the roast to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes.
- Carve the roast into thin slices and arrange on a warmed platter.
- (Make sure to remove butcher’s twine before carving).
What you’ll need: 6 tbsp. unsalted butter , 3 large leeks leeks (White and light green portions, rinsed well and chopped)
1 1/2 tbsp. salt, 1 tsp. minced fresh thyme, 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg, 3/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper, 2 cups heavy cream, 1 ½ cups of grated Gruyère cheese, ¾ cup of grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 7-9 medium sized russet potatoes (peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices), 3 Tbs. minced fresh chives.
- In a 12-inch fry pan over medium heat, melt 5 tbsp. of the butter.
- Add the leeks and salt, stirring to coat the leeks with the butter. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leeks are tender, about 20 minutes.
- Add the thyme, nutmeg, pepper and cream and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Wipe out the pan and grease with the remaining 1 Tbs. butter.
- Preheat an oven to 400ºF.
- Layer one-third of the potatoes in the fry pan and spread one-third of the leek mixture on top. Sprinkle with one-third of the cheeses, then 1 Tbs. of the chives. Repeat the layering 2 more times reserving 1 Tbs. of the chives.
- Cover the pan, transfer to the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
- Remove the lid and continue baking until the potatoes are tender and the crust is golden brown, about 30 minutes more.
- Sprinkle the remaining 1 Tbs. chives on top. Let the gratin stand for 15 minutes before serving.