Reuniting With An Old Friend: Smoked Pepper Crusted Beef Tenderloin (Pics)

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tx smoker

Legendary Pitmaster
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OTBS Member
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Apr 14, 2013
Lago Vista, Texas
Back in '08 I got the honor of building a new house for a person who we became very good friends with. The build process was pretty much seamless and the friendship continued after closing. We have done tons of activities with him and his family over the years: parties at his house, parties at our house, boating, motorcycle trips, just hanging out at the brewery for a few beers, etc. When the pandemic hit 3 years ago we kinda lost touch and hadn't seen him since then. He reached out last week just to say HI and that turned into a dinner invite for last Saturday. This would also be the first time meeting his new fiance' and we were really looking forward to that. Since it had been years, I decided to pull out all the stops and put together a really nice dinner. The decision was made to do the beef tenderloin so I put together a complimentary array if side dishes.

To get the ball rolling, I had to make our beloved sour cream and onion rolls. The dough after the 2nd proof.

We love the asparagus this way: Kerrygold butter, shaved pecans, and dried cranberries.

A nice bowl of homemade garlic & sour cream mashed potatoes.

Homemade beef and onion gravy. Brokenhandle Brokenhandle are you paying attention?

The roast. Just over 1 1/2 pounds but there are only 4 of us and 3 aren't big eaters.

Rubbed down with a Worcestershire sauce, a sprinkle of kosher salt, and coated with black pepper.

The rolls done and off the grill.

A pan full of mushrooms simmered with Marsala wine, butter, garlic, and black pepper.

Appetizer plate with homemade Hawaiian Portagee sausage, some amazing smoked 16 year aged extra sharp cheddar I got from our very good friend Steve H Steve H in the Christmas exchange, and some club crackers.

Some cherry wood TBS rolling in the afternoon sunlight. For some reason I really like this pic.

Tenderloin on the smoker. Running 245 for the first 40 minutes to set the crust then drop to 180 to finish.

Time to put the asparagus on the grill.

The roast all done and getting happy. Pulled at an IT of 128.

Sliced...oh baby!!


Tracy putting the finishing touches on the table. We don't use the dining room but a couple times a year so she likes to make it kinda pretty.

The spread. Kind of a funky pic and the rolls didn't make it in, but you get the idea. Rolls did show up in time for serving though.

Finally and alas, my first plate.

To say this meal was superb wouldn't be doing it justice. Everything was pretty much perfectly done and came together in a complimentary way to create an extraordinary meal, and not just a meal, an experience. It was a perfect way to get back in touch with Gerald, and his new bride-to-be Dana was an absolute hoot!! Such an amazing lady and we fell in love with her immediately. A fine tribute to a fine friend. Now to bring this story full circle. Gerald (aka snakehead snakehead ) is the person who turned me on to SMF a long time ago when I was failing miserably trying to smoke ribs. Well there ya have it.....the truth is out so you can blame him for all the weird stuff I've subjected you to over the years. It's all HIS fault :emoji_laughing:

Now that I'm finished blamestorming, gonna call this one done. Take care and stay safe folks.

Yes, I'm paying very close attention! Another fine-looking meal... especially with the gravy! It all looks delicious! Really love the fresh rolls as well!

To say it was absolutely amazing would be and understatement. The meal was so delicious, but it was even better being able to spend time with Robert & Tracy again as well as introduce my love Dana to them. Can’t wait to have them over to our place and cook for them!
#teamgravy !!, Robert all your cooks are fantastic but if I had to pick one thing I’d call your specialty it is absolutely perfect execution on tenderloin cooks. Just literal food poetry! All the sides awesome too.
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Very nice Robert , and to break bread ( sour cream and onion rolls ) with a great friend and his new love.

and yes you did pull out all the stops. Fantastic spread and Tracy happy getting to use the fancy eatin table.

Very nice Robert

Great meal, Robert and sharing with old friends really makes it special. Since I retired 6 years ago, I've lost touch with some friends who I shared some great times with. With the recent passing of one of those friends, I've realized how important those relationships were/are and that life is short so I'm trying to reconnect with some of them again. You know we're all about family and friends around our house...
Wow! As usual you nailed the beef. Those potato's look awesome. I am a huge asparagus lover and that gravy! I just bought a used bread machine to make those rolls but it going to be a while before I able to do them.
One hell of a story and a fantastic meal to accompany it, some fine work there Robert! RAY
Just when I thought you couldn't do better. You come up with this. Great meal my friend!
Thanks buddy, I appreciate it. I've done similar meals before but don't know if I've ever done this combination. It all came together to make a really nice meal though.

Yes, I'm paying very close attention!
Good. glad I got your attention. Wait till you see what I made last night :emoji_wink:
Another fine-looking meal... especially with the gravy! It all looks delicious! Really love the fresh rolls as well!
Thank you my friend. This was a really good meal and we do those rolls regularly and love them. so good and so easy to make.

Just setting the bar higher and higher. Great looking meal! And great to reconnect with friends.

#teamgravy !!
I'm getting this gravy stuff figured out :emoji_wink:
Robert all your cooks are fantastic but if I had to pick one thing I’d call your specialty it is absolutely perfect execution on tenderloin cooks. Just literal food poetry! All the sides awesome too.
Thanks so much for the accolades my friend. The technique I've been using for smoking roasts was actually stumbled upon by accident a while back but has become my go-to method. It's pretty much fool proof.

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