Bacon Wrapped Bison Tenderloin with Pecan Butter

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Voting for The Homies 2013 ends soon so please help me out and vote for me for best food photography and healthy cooking blog here. It would really mean the world to me.

There are many ways to cook a steak, or a tenderloin in this case. My favorite way is pan roasting it. Something about pan roasting a tenderloin makes it perfect every time, but lets keep that for another post. This is different. Typically when it comes to a tenderloin for me I’m quite the minimalist. Just pepper, a little salt and maybe a dash of fresh herbs.

Although sometimes a tenderloin by itself just doesn’t do it, sometimes you have to wrap a slab of smokey bacon around it and slap a glob of sweet creamy pecan butter on top of it. It’s quite the deviant in flavor when you combine sweet and salty like this. It always brings good results and a huge smile followed by uproars of simultaneous “oh my god’s” from stuffed mouths that you can hardly even make out as a sentence.

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Because tenderloin is so lean already adding the bacon around it kind of encases it in its own basting device, so yes you can basically baste it without having to really do anything. Not to mention the smoky bacon flavor will penetrate the meat while in the oven, and bacon flavor is not to be trifled with. It’s widely known that it’s a strong flavor, but I’m not sure people are aware of how easy it is to use it as an aromatic even though it’s a meat. The flavor in bacon is so pungent it will give off it’s flavor to anything you put it on or near for that matter while cooking, which makes it a perfect vehicle of flavor for a lean piece of meat like tenderloin.

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Besides from the fact of the bacon, why not take the richness up a notch and add a glob of pecan butter. It’s slight sweetness and creaminess really lend a hand to the smoky, briny bacon. Truly an unbeatable combo for any slab of meat in my opinion. With that said who is to say it has to be bison tenderloin? Not me. You could probably do this on just about any steak including a beef tenderloin or pork tenderloin. I also found that making a pan sauce along side is just another decadence to add to this long list of gastronomic details that make this dish so satisfying.

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Try and make sure your pecan butter isn’t too cold if you refrigerate it when you put it on the meat. You want it to kind of melt away on to the meat, not completely but enough to create a beautiful nutty mess on the top. Or you could just do what I did and spread it around on the top so you have a little bit of everything in one tongue twitching bite. Just be sure to take your time enjoying the taste of this because I scarfed mine down so fast I’m not even sure I got to fully taste it.

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Regardless of my idiotic scarfing I still really enjoyed the meal and will definitely be making it again because it’s so incredibly quick to make and something perfect for a special occasion without too much hassle. Just remember to get that sear nice and good on each side and you will have a really flavorful piece of meat. I like to test the meats doneness by touch rather than by thermometer because if you take the thermometer out it will spill juices everywhere.

Not to mention, nobody wants to leave a  big thermometer in a nice beautifully cut tenderloin, it just doesn’t look appealing, at all. Luckily I figured out the timing for you guys but everyones oven is different so if you want to go buy feel, rare feels like the soft spot between your thumb and index finger, medium rare feel likes the soft pad behind and under your thumb and medium feels a little higher up.

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Bacon Wrapped Bison Tenderloin with Pecan Butter
5.0 from 3 reviews
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Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
Tenderloin Recipe:
  • 2 (8 oz) bison tenderloins
  • 2-4 strips of bacon per tenderloin (depending on whether or not one strip will wrap all the way around, if one strip doesn't wrap all the way around simply overlap two)
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary and thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons pecan butter or more depending on how much you want (I used Artisana Organic Raw Pecan Butter which is delicious by the way)
  • oil for brushing(I used Avocado oil, but you could use Macadamia nut oil as well)
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste (coarse ground black pepper)
Optional Pan Sauce:
  • 1 cup chicken stock or red wine
  • 1½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon grass fed butter
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
Tenderloin Recipe
  1. Pull out your tenderloins and let thems it out and come to room temperature for about 20 minutes before you put them in the pan (this is not 100 percent necessary but it is nice to let your steaks come slightly to room temperature before cooking)
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  3. Line a medium sized baking sheet with aluminum foil and place to the side
  4. Remove leaves from rosemary and thyme and place on cutting board discarding the stems.
  5. Sprinkle salt on herbs and crack fresh black pepper liberally on the herbs then mince with 2 cloves of garlic finely.
  6. Brush both sides of each tenderloin with oil and then rub herb mixture onto them both sides of oil brushed tenderloin.
  7. Wrap each tenderloin with 1 strip or more of bacon so they are overlapping and hold in place by piercing a toothpick through the overlapping bacon and into the tenderloin.
  8. Heat a dry nonstick pan over medium high heat and wait for it to get nice and hot. You have to make sure the pan is hot before you put the steaks in that way you get a nice sear, you should hear the sizzle the second it hits the pan. Once the pan is hot place steaks in the pan and sear about 1-2 minutes per side or until desired browning is achieved.
  9. Place seared tenderloins onto foil lined baking sheet and place in preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes depending on your oven.(this is where you would start making the optional pan sauce if you would like it)
  10. Pull tenderloins out let them rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.
  11. Serve steaks with 1 teaspoon or more of pecan butter on top of each tenderloin, an optional pan sauce and a side of veggies. (I had mine with Roasted Brussels Sprouts and sauteed spinach but I bet this would go great with Cauliflower Mash)
Optional Pan Sauce
  1. Once meat has finished searing and are in the oven in the same pan you seared them in add a little bit of oil and fry 2 more cloves of minced garlic until fragrant.
  2. Deglaze the pan with 1 cup chicken stock or red wine scraping the browned bits at the bottom of the pan(two completely different flavors but both work great)
  3. Bring to a simmer and add 1½ tablespoons red wine vinegar and stir
  4. Simmer until liquid has reduced by half and add 1 tablespoon of butter and melt.
  5. Bring back to a simmer a lightly simmer until it reduces slightly more.
  6. Strain pan sauce into a bowl and spoon strained pan sauce over finished steaks when serving.
Notes
You can easily double or triple this recipe if you are serving more people just be sure not to overcrowd the pan when searing. Remember to go by feel for doneness of your tenderloins unless you want to stick a instant read thermometer in one the whole time it's baking. If you do an instant read thermometer then you want to pull them out around 130 for rare and 145-150 for medium rare. Or if you go by feel rare feels like the soft spot between your thumb and index finger, medium rare feel likes the soft pad behind and under your thumb and medium feels a little higher up from medium rare, closer to your wrist. (I know that some people are probably going to get this feel part wrong because it's more of something I would have to show you rather than explain through text but I have explained it to the best of my ability)

 

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10 Responses to Bacon Wrapped Bison Tenderloin with Pecan Butter

  1. Anastasia 10 February, 2013 at 2:16 am #

    This looks AWESOME! Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    Now, all you have to do to make it absolutely PERFECT is DITCH THAT TEFLON PAN and get yourself a nice cast iron one. Heating teflon even on a medium high heat will release toxic chemicals that you really don’t want or need to be breathing (they say that temperature is over 550º in some places, but I don’t buy it! If you don’t believe me, please do some research!)

    PLUS, if you use cast iron, you can just toss it in the oven and do you pan glaze all in one pan ;)

    Keep up the great work. I just found you today through US Wellness Beef and can’t wait to explore your site more!

    • Slim Palate 10 February, 2013 at 10:54 am #

      I actually already knew about that. That’s why I switch the tenderloins to a baking sheet instead of putting the pan inside the oven. I seriously do need to get a everyday use cast iron pan.

      • Anastasia 10 February, 2013 at 11:05 am #

        Awesome ;) And yes, you do! Once it’s seasoned properly you’ll never even know it’s not a teflon pan…well, the added iron you’ll be getting might make you a bit stronger (I kid!).

        Keep up the amazing work! I was poking around and saw some of your photos and you look amazing, you’re an inspiration even to an old bag such as myself! Your parents must be very proud of you…Rightfully so!

        Have a great day, my new friend!

    • Rochelle 25 February, 2013 at 6:34 pm #

      I agree totally!!!All this great food wants no nitrate bacon as well.

  2. Lindsay 16 February, 2013 at 11:50 am #

    I made this for out family on Valentine’s day and it was amazing!! I do wonder if you have any suggestions on how to make it so the bacon is a little more done. Thanks for the delicious recipe!!

    • Slim Palate 16 February, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

      Yes, sorry about that. I will add that to the recipe. What you can do is take your bacon and place it on a microwave safe plate with paper towels on the plate and then place more paper towels on top and microwave for 1-2 minutes just to help get the fat cooking on it but make sure it’s still pliable.

  3. Kate {Eat, Recycle, Repeat} 9 April, 2013 at 11:04 pm #

    OOo this looks incredible! I love bison & bacon, and the addition of pecan butter looks absolutely divine

  4. Amira 15 May, 2013 at 7:52 am #

    This looks delicious! How would you suggest I alter this recipe for 2 bison ribeyes instead of tenderloins? My local Whole Foods didn’t have tenderloins…so I’m hoping ribeyes will do the trick. Should I alter my cooking times?

    love your site! You are an inspiration to all!!

  5. Debra 19 March, 2014 at 11:00 am #

    I just found your blog, thanks to your friend George, the Civilized Caveman. Congratulations on the tremendous weight loss, and heath gain. This recipe looks absolutely amazing. I have a venison tenderloin in the freezer, so I am going to try using that.I can’t wait to check out your cookbook. Keep up the wonderful cooking.

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