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Course: Mains
Keyword: Beef, Beef Tenderloin in Salt Crust, Christmas, Dairy-Free, Holidays, Meat

Beef Tenderloin in Salt Crust

ACTIVE TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 5 hours 40 minutes
Yield: 10
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  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons fresh ground black pepper
  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, and/or sage)
  • 1 (6- to 7-pound) beef tenderloin, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Specialized Hardware

  • Kitchen twine
  • Electric griddle
ACTIVE TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 5 hours 40 minutes
Yield: 10


  • Place the flour, salt, and pepper in a large mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk the egg whites and water and add to the dry ingredients along with 2 tablespoons of the herbs. Combine with a potato masher until the mixture begins to come together. Then, knead with your hands for 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a large zip-top bag, seal, and let stand at room temperature for at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • Transfer dough to a floured surface and roll out to 3/16-inch thickness, approximately a 24-by 18-inch rectangle. Trim away extra dough, if necessary. Sprinkle the remaining herbs on the center section of the dough and gently press down.
  • Heat oven to 400ºF.
  • In order to achieve uniform cooking, fold over slender tail end of tenderloin and tie with kitchen twine. Set a large electric griddle to its highest setting. Brush the tenderloin with the olive oil and sear on all sides until well browned, approximately 10 minutes. Rest the meat until it is cool to the touch so as not to melt the dough, approximately 5 minutes.
  • Place the tenderloin in the center of the dough. Fold top part of dough over, flipping about 1 inch of dough back onto itself. Repeat with the bottom half of the dough. Press the 2 flaps of dough together and seal, making sure the dough is not too tight around the tenderloin. At the ends of the tenderloin, press dough together to form a seal and cut away any excess. Transfer to a sheet pan, place in the oven, and roast to an internal temperature of 125ºF, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour. The tenderloin will continue to cook 10 to 15 degrees more. Cut salt crust at one end and extract meat by pulling out of dough tube. Slice and serve immediately.
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