We’ve said it before: our ingredients are so natural, you could eat our soap if you wanted to — but that probably doesn’t sound too appetizing (Ralphie from A Christmas Story would agree). A better idea? Let’s explore some of our ingredients that can be just as delicious as they are healthy for your skin. In our first dish of this series, we're cooking Ellen Sullivan's Lavender Tenderloin, from One Big Table by Molly O'Neill.
First up: lavender. We use this plant as an essential oil in many of our favorite products, like our classic Oatmeal Lavender bar soap or our Lavender Clean Mist, and we love its soothing, stress-relieving properties (learn more here). In the kitchen, you can use culinary-grade lavender to impart an herbal, floral note to meats, baked goods, and drinks. For our first foray into food blogging, we’re starting off with a bang—a show-stopping preparation for beef tenderloin that’s easy to serve to a crowd and feels elegant enough for a celebration (we’ve bookmarked this for our 25th anniversary party!).
Lavender is used here in the spice rub—it’s ground with peppercorns and fennel to give the meat a spicy, herbal crust as it tenderizes overnight in the fridge. (Picture a tenderloin relaxing with our Lavender Bath Balm after a long day at work.) About an hour before your guests arrive, you’ll take the meat out, pop it in the oven for a few minutes, and serve while looking like the effortless host that you are. It’s really that easy! And, if you’re not in the mood to serve a crowd, you can easily scale down the size of the tenderloin (or use another favorite cut of meat) and save the leftover spice rub for another day.
If you're in the Nashville area and looking for a locally-sourced tenderloin, we recommend our friends at Porter Road Butcher. Their beef is pasture-raised, free of antibiotics and hormones, and an important source of tallow for our soaps—so you'll be supporting a true circle of sustainability, Lion King-style! Learn more about our collaboration with Porter Road Butcher here.
We hope you enjoy experimenting with this powerful botanical - and if you try this recipe, let us know in the comments! Cheers!
From One Big Table by Molly O'Neill:
In 1998, Ellen Sullivan purchased land in Northern San Diego County, California, named it The Lavender Fields, and planted, grew, and harvested fields of lavender. She also searched for culinary uses for the plant, which is still considered more of an aromatic flower than a herb. "The first modern culinary use I saw was a chef's recipe for lavender crème brûlée, and that got me thinking. Lavender's flavor is both tangy and floral, so it works as well in savory dishes as it does in sweet ones—I love what it does to beef tenderloin." This recipe remains one of Ms. Sullivan's favorite company meals.
From One Big Table: A Portrait of American Cooking by Molly O'Neill. Copyright © 2010 by Molly O'Neill. Published by Simon & Schuster.