The trick is to smoke the meat and not make the meat smoke

SMOKED GARLIC BEEF TENDERLOIN

  Date: December 31, 2016
  Favorite: Beef
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I always make a meal the afternoon of New Years Eve. This allows people to get home in time to celebrate NYE as they wish and they aren’t trying to drive home when the crazies come out. I wanted to end 2016 on a special note. It had been a bit of a tough year with several health scares for my dad and I. Both of use have been doing great since November and I wanted something really memorable. I have made Chateabriand a center cut piece from the beef tenderloin before and it has always been amazing. So I had certain expectations going in. This roast far exceeded my expectation and made for about the best meal I’ve ever made or eaten.

The trick with beef tenderloin is giving the meat some flavor. Their is virtually no fat and so while tender, it can be bland tasting without some help. This recipe was written for a Kamado grill and cooked the meat low and slow with Hickory smoke. The flavor boost was given by the Hickory smoke, which seemed to highlight the beef flavor as well as a garlic and herb paste. I had all 3 Eggs in use this day With CyberQ WiFi pit controllers running 2 of them. The CyberQ’s took care of the warmup on 2 Eggs and also monitored the cooking temperatures while I focussed on prep. The graphing capabilities of the CyberCook software also helped save my bacon on this meal. From past experience I knew that this was a very linear cook. The recipe said 2 hours was the cook time and things seemed to be going faster than that. I pulled up a graph for this cook on my iPad and used a straight edge to project the line to estimate the finish time. To my surprise this predicted a 90 minute finish time. So I accelerated my prep and got the other two Eggs fired up 30 minutes sooner. Everything came out together thanks to the early warning I got from the graph from CyberCook.

The end results were totally amazing. After a 30 minute rest I sliced the roast into 1/2” thick slices. The electric knife glided through these like butter. It was the easiest cutting I have ever experienced. Needless to say I was already drooling before even tasting the meat. This was the first time I had smoked a beef tenderloin and the first one made on the Egg. The results were amazing!! The Hickory smoke seemed to bring out some of the beef flavor,. The garlic herb crust gave the outer crust great flavor and the horse radish was the perfect compliment to this meat. The meat was so tender and so moist. It was noticeably better than any other beef tenderloin I’ve made. At first I couldn’t figure out why. This was the first USDA Prime grade tenderloin I had made., but I didn’t think that was it. This was the first time I had cooked it low and slow and I think this more gentle cooking method certainly helped. Then the lightbulb went off. I have had an Egg for 4 years now and I have made most everything on it at this point, But not beef tenderloin. I had forgotten how the tight seal of the Egg retains far more moisture than my gas grill or smoker. Mystery solved: Prime grade meat, a great recipe for the crust, cooked low and slow with smoke and cooked on an Egg = near perfection.
Recipe Source:
Alt image
The Kamado Grill Cookbook

The Kamado Grill Cookbook:

Smoked Garlic Beef Tenderloin (eBook)
Low Sodium Diet Changes:
As of July 2016 I need to be on a very low sodium diet. Six days a week I am limited to 1,000 mg. of sodium and on Saturdays I am allowed to have 1,500 mg. I have been learning how to adapt certain recipes to make them very low sodium. I also need to watch my intake of potassium chloride which is used in some salt substitutes to replace sodium chloride. I figured for anyone else trying to watch their sodium intake, I would describe some of the changes I made, together with any comments about the relative success or failure of the tweaks I made. Those of you who can handle more sodium can certainly make the recipe as originally written.
Big Picture: I had saved New Years Day as my 1,500 mg day for this particular week, so I had a bit more leeway in planning this meal. I had eaten rolled oat made with water, unsalted butter and brown sugar for breakfast = a whopping 5 mg of sodium. This left me essentially with the full 1,500 mg of sodium to play with. I began planning the menu and found things were going to be far easier than I thought. I knew I wanted to make a beef tenderloin which was only 98 mg of sodium for 3 slices 1/2” thick slices. I found this recipe which I wanted to make and was at first dismayed about the inclusion of 1/4 tsp of Kosher salt to make the garlic paste. But I did the math and the 1800 mg of sodium divided across the 20 slices I would get out of my roast was 300 mg. The sides were going to have essential no sodium so I was way ahead of the game at around 400 mg. This allowed me to use Horseradish, which was the recommended condiment, would add another 200 mg or so. As it turned out I used 1/2 the amount of Horseradish I expected and so my final count for the meal would be 500 mg. So when the meat turned out to be about the best meat I think I have ever tried, having a 4th slice was a no brainer and I was still under my sodium count for the day.

Changes:

  • None required after doing the math

Comments: This prime grade Chateaubriand roast turned out amazing!! Everyone said it was the best piece of meat they remember having. There was no question about trying to go low sodium without sacrificing flavor. I was able to make this recipe 100 percent as written.
Grill:
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Big Green Egg

Smoked:

Using the Big Green Egg Kamado Cooker
Gear:
  • CGS-Adjustable Rig
  • CGS-Oval Pizza Stone (Level 1.5)
  • CGS AR Sliding Oval Grid (Level 3)
  • CGS-13" s/s Drip Pan (Level 3)
  • CGS AR Sliding Oval Grid (Level 4.5)
  • Kenmore S-S Roast Rack
  • BBG-Cyber Q WiFi Pit Controller,
  • Stump Chunks Fire Starter
  • Hickory Wood Chunks.
  • Rockwood Lump Charcoal