Serves 4 to 6. Published March 1, 2009. From Cook’s Illustrated.
If using table salt, reduce the amount to 1 teaspoon. Ask your butcher to prepare a trimmed, center-cut Châteaubriand from the whole tenderloin, as this cut is not usually available without special ordering. If you are cooking for a crowd, this recipe can be doubled to make two roasts. Sear the roasts one after the other, wiping out the pan and adding new oil after searing the first roast. Both pieces of meat can be roasted on the same rack.
1 beef tenderloin center-cut Châteaubriand (about 2 pounds), trimmed of fat and silver skin (see note)
2 teaspoons kosher salt (see note)
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter , softened
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 recipe flavored butter (see related recipes)
1. Using 12-inch lengths of twine, tie roast crosswise at 11/2-inch intervals. Sprinkle roast evenly with salt, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let stand at room temperature 1 hour. Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Pat roast dry with paper towels. Sprinkle roast evenly with pepper and spread unsalted butter evenly over surface. Transfer roast to wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet. Roast until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of roast registers 125 degrees for medium-rare, 40 to 55 minutes, or 135 degrees for medium, 55 to 70 minutes, flipping roast halfway through cooking.
3. Heat oil in 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Place roast in skillet and sear until well browned on four sides, 1 to 2 minutes per side (total of 4 to 8 minutes). Transfer roast to carving board and spread 2 tablespoons flavored butter evenly over top of roast; let rest 15 minutes. Remove twine and cut meat crosswise into ½-inch-thick slices. Serve, passing remaining flavored butter separately.