Day 1 of my Ina Garten Cookbook Journey.  I am using Ina’s “foolproof” book (it’s purple if that helps).  Today was a record-breaking, freezing-cold day and I was in the mood for something warm and filling.  This afternoon was a little rough, so I was definitely in the mood to ROAST something.

The recipe of the day ended up being “slow-roasted filet of beef with basil Parmesan mayonnaise.”


1 whole filet of beef tenderloin, trimmed and tied (4 ½ pounds)

3 tablespoons good olive oil

4 teaspoons kosher salt

2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper

10 to 15 branches fresh tarragon

Basil Parmesan mayonnaise (see below)


Now, I don’t think I have ever followed a recipe (as written) in my life and I definitely started off this cooking journey that way.

To begin, I switched out the cut of meat Ina asked for… (Bad, Becky!)

Living in a city and having smaller grocery stores, sometimes you can’t always get the ingredients you want—even if they seem really basic.  The store did not have beef tenderloin yesterday (I know, right?) so I got a bottom round roast (2.73 lbs).  I knew the basil Parmesan sauce would still pair well with round roast (beef is still beef!).