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Valentine's Day Feast to Impress

Posted by Mary M. on February 11, 2013

There’s a day circled in red on your calendar and it’s creeping closer. It’s Valentine’s Day. You’ve got two days to figure out how to woo and wow that special someone in your life. It’s time to prove your love. We know you can hear your Traeger calling your name. There’s no better way to show someone that you love them than by hitting them in their sweet spot. It’s medically proven that there’s a direct path from your stomach to your heart. Okay, so maybe that's not true but it should be. Here’s a meal that will win over the heart and stomach of the love of your life.

Let’s break it down to the meal’s ABC’s:

 A.   The Meat – Smoked Beef Tenderloin Steaks with Blue Cheese and Peppercorn Butter

“Where’s the beef?” still proves a relevant question today. One of the best ways to express your love is through a hunk of juicy meat. The Smoked Beef Tenderloin with Blue Cheese and Peppercorn Butter is one sexy hunk of meat. The best part is that it sounds sophisticated and complicated but is so easy. We promise that it will impress, Traeger Nation.

The first step is to make a compound butter. That’s just a fancy way of saying, ‘butter with herbs and stuff in it’. Allow 4 tablespoons of butter (1/2 stick) to come to room temperature. Put it in a bowl and whip it up for a few seconds with a hand mixer. Then fold in the following:

  • 1 ½ tablespoons of blue cheese
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced or grated with your handy rasp
  • ½ tablespoon dry sherry or wine (optional)
  • ½ tablespoon minced chives or parsley
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground green or black peppercorns
  • coarse salt (kosher or sea salt), to taste (a pinch or two)

Cover the compound butter with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you're ready to use it. Bonus meal for later - you can wrap up the leftover compound butter with plastic wrap and use it on future meals like Roasted Brussel Sprouts or Smoke-Roasted Chicken. You can even keep it in the freezer for up to 6 months!

Next, pull out that beautiful beef tenderloin. *Here's a good tip - take your meat out of the fridge for about 30 minutes prior to Traegering to let it warm up a bit and allow for even cooking. Start your Traeger on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes (until the fire is established). Brush the outside of the steak with olive oil and season with Traeger Prime Rib Rub or coarse salt and freshly ground pepper.

Put the steaks on the grill grate and smoke for 30 minutes. Transfer the steaks to a plate and place a cast iron skillet on the grill grate. Increase the temperature of the grill to 450 degrees F (High) and preheat the skillet for 10 minutes. Drizzle a layer of olive oil on the bottom of the skillet. Arrange the smoked steaks on the skillet and sear them, turning them once. Then transfer the steaks from the skillet directly to the grill grate and finish cooking to your desired doneness. (Use an instant-read thermometer to get that precise doneness.) For those of you who enjoy a rare/medium rare steak, you can also use the feel of the muscle on your thumb as a guide for that perfect texture. When you're ready to plate, top that sizzling steak with a chunk of the blue cheese compound butter and watch that baby melt into the meat, cueing the natural salivation reflex. Seriously and quite literally. It's like butta!

B. The Sides - Roasted New Potatoes with Butter and Chives & Roasted Beets with Rosemary and Goat Cheese

The trick of any dinner is timing and pulling off a complete, hot meal. These two sides do the math for you. They both can be Traegered simultaneously and then kept warm in the oven while your steak finishes cooking.

Use the smallest new potatoes you can find or if they're bigger chop them into bite-sized pieces, like we did. Wash, pat dry, and lay out enough potatoes for the two of you (around a dozen or so) on a baking sheet covered in aluminum foil. Also, peel, trim and cut up 2-3 beets into 1-1/2 inch chunks. *Handy tip - If you cut your potatoes and beets into about the same size they'll cook at the same rate and be done at the same time. Drizzle all of the vegetables with olive oil and season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper. Additionally, season only the beets with some chopped rosemary.

 

Preheat your Traeger to 400 degrees F. Place the baking sheet with the potatoes and beets on the grill grate and roast for about 25 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice during cooking. Cook until the vegetables are tender.

In the meantime, create the butter fondue by melting 4 tablespoons of butter (1/2 stick) in a bowl. Mix in the following:

  • 1 tablespoon minced chives
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

(You might also want to add in a pinch of salt, to taste.)

You can either use this yummy butter sauce as a dip for your potatoes or pour it overtop of them so that all the favor soaks in.

Once the beets and potatoes are done cooking, keep them warm in the oven by setting it on the lowest temperature while you wait anxiously for the steaks to finish. Before serving the beets, crumble an ounce or two of goat cheese on top. The combination of the beets and the goat cheese is heavenly! The goat cheese is soft and tart and a bit sweet while the beets are hot and salty and have an irrestible, crunchy bite from the grill.

C. Fresh Green Salad

You need some sweet and fresh crunch to balance all that delicious, buttery richness! Salads are easy-peasy and you can toss them together ahead of time and keep in the fridge until the meat and sides are done. You could really use any of your favorite ingredients in a salad, but might we suggest you try tossing the following a big salad bowl:

  • a bag of mixed greens
  • pears cut in 1-inch cubes (Asian pears have an incredible crunch!)
  • dried cranberries
  • chopped green onions
  • Rosemary Pecans - Roast pecans in the Traeger with some olive oil, salt, pepper and rosemary (the smell alone is intoxicating!)

Just dress with your favorite vinaigrette and you are ready to impress!

This meal oozes love and if the look and smells alone don't make their heart melt, the taste will. If you don't believe us, try it out for yourself!

And make sure you don't forget to give your loyal, never-fails-to-create-a-scrumptious meal, Traeger a little love too for always making your mouth oh-so happy.

 

Here are the printable recipes: (In our demo, we halved all the recipes to make just enough for a love bird feast.)

Smoked Beef Tenderloin.pdf (45.24 kb)

Roasted New Potatoes.pdf (45.17 kb)

Roasted Beets.pdf (40.95 kb)