Shrimp Scampi and Slow Roasted Beef Tenderloin

Last week a few friends and I decided to take a cooking class at the Chopping Block, because one friend had gotten a gift certificate that she swore she was just using as a coaster and the rest of us really had nothing better to do on a random Monday night in February.  I’ve taken classes there before, but this was the first time that I’ve ever gone with friends and I’m fairly certain that we, along with our two bottles of wine, snarky comments and complete irreverence, won’t be allowed back any time soon.  Oh, we were good students and paid attention (kind of), but it’s never a good sign when the head instructor names your group the Rascals 15 minutes into class and the other students suddenly become very busy with zesting their lemons when we tried to be friendly (at least I think we tried. Maybe not…).

I blame the fact that all of us are complete Type A personalities, the class was on a Monday evening after a weekend of various ups and downs for all of us, we were having a heated—and not so subtle—debate on the hotness of the two instructors (cleverly named Mean Hot Chef and Nice Hot Chef), and the fact that the class was called “Seal the Deal,” in anticipation of Valentine’s Day, on why we probably aren’t going to be named Teacher’s Pets any time soon.  I mean, we followed instructions for the most part (except that whole adding salt before we were supposed to when it came to the red wine reduction sauce.  Luckily Mean Hot Chef caught us in time) and we didn’t set ourselves or anything on fire, and our final dish looked like everyone else’s.  But, I can kind of see how the wine drinking and the picture taking (I’m the guilty party on this one) and the endless questioning (“How long do you grill the radicchio?” “I really don’t like giving specific grilling times, since each grill is different.” “Oh. Ok, that makes sense. But if you had to give a specific time, what would it be?” [Insert sigh and eye roll here]) could turn a peaceful class into the kind of thing that makes instructors wonder what they did in a past life to deserve this fresh hell. 

Our menu, which was shrimp scampi (side note here: we learned that Scampi means shrimp, so basically the dish is called shrimp shrimp and that made us ridiculously happy.  It doesn’t take much.), grilled radicchio with balsamic glaze, slow roasted beef tenderloin with herb roasted potatoes and red wine reduction and a flourless chocolate cake with bourbon caramel sauce, was actually pretty easy but looked very impressive, and took, from start to finish 2 hours (that includes us playing around and posing for pictures with sharp knives.  Dear lord, what would our mothers say?!). 

I wish I could tell you some tricks that we learned along the way, but I fully admit that this class was more about spending time with my friends than actually learning to cook.  But in the end, isn’t that what it’s all about?  I mean, the point of learning to cook is so you’ll be able to share a meal with people you love, right?  Well, that and hanging out with hot chefs.  That last part can take you pretty far…

Shrimp Shrimp and Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Reduction (courtesy of The Chopping Block)


Shrimp Shrimp (yield: 4-6 servings)

  • 1 ½ -2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

 For Sauce

  •  1 cup white wine
  • 1-2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, rough chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tarragon, rough chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cold butter
  • Warm bread for dipping
  1. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat and add the butter and olive oil.
  2. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Sauté the shrimp on the first side for about 1-2 minutes.  Add the garlic, flip the shrimp over and continue to cook until they are just cooked through.  Evenly distribute the shrimp between bowls and set aside.
  4. Return the pan to the heat and deglaze with the wine and lemon juice.
  5. Simmer until slightly thickened, scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  6. Stir in the tomatoes, zest, parsley and tarragon.  Season the sauce with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
  7. Whisk in the cold butter and pour the sauce over the shrimp.  Serve with warm bread on the side to soak up the sauce.

 Slow Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Reduction

  • One 4-5 pound beef tenderloin, trimmed of any excess fat and silver skin
  • 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • Your favorite rub or salt blend

 For Red Wine Reduction

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 shallots, sliced thin
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 cups beef stock (Mean Hot Chef said that low sodium stock should be used. See I did learn something!)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 springs thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter, diced
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, rough chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees
  2. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat and add the grapeseed oil.  Season the beef with the rub or salt blend.  Sear the beef on all sides until well caramelized.  Transfer the beef to a roasting rack set in a roasting pan.
  3. Roast the beef until done to your liking.  An internal temperature of 125 degrees will produce the best results.
  4. While the beef roasts prepare the red wine reduction.
  5. Heat the same pan the beef was seared in over medium heat and add the butter.  Add the shallots and gently sauté until lightly caramelized, about 1 minute. Deglaze the pan with red wine, scraping free any bits from the bottom of the pan.  Simmer until the wine has reduced to about ¼ cup.  Whisk in the beef stock, mustard, thyme and bay leaf and simmer until reduced by half of its original volume.
  6. Remove the sauce from the heat and whisk in the cold butte, followed by the parsley.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Once beef is done, allow it to rest for about 10 minutes.  Cut into ½ inch slices against the grain and serve with red wine reduction.

2 Responses to Shrimp Scampi and Slow Roasted Beef Tenderloin

  1. Pingback: Wine Glaze » Shrimp Scampi and Slow Roasted Beef Tenderloin

  2. Pingback: Cinnamon Rolls « Pestle Mortar

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