Peppered Lavender Beef

A wonderfully highly-flavored roast beef recipe. The addition of lavender sounds odd, but it does add an extra aromatic dimension to the beef. Use the best quality beef you can get
Serves: 6
Preparation Time: 10 minutes plus marinating time
Cooking Time: 1 - 1/2 hours, plus marinating time
approx 3lb / 1.7kg beef tenderloin
1 tbsp olive oil

Herbs & Spices
1 tbsp Peppercorns Black
1 tbsp Peppercorns White
1 1/2 tbsp Fennel Seed
1 tsp Thyme
1 1/2 tbsp Lavender
Cooking Instructions
Trim the tenderloin of fat and connective tissue. brush all over with oil.

Using a pestle and mortar or a spice grinder (or clean coffee grinder) grind (coarsely) the peppercorns, fennel seeds, thyme and lavender. Rub the mixture all over meat. Place the meat in a plastic bag. Squash the air out of it and seal. Place in fridge to marinate for at least 2 hours, or preferable overnight. Take the bag out of the fridge before cooking to allow the meat to come to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 210C/425F/gas mark 7.

Take the meat out of the bag. Fold the thin end of the tenderloin under the joint so that the joint is of a similar thickness along its length. Place onto a rack in a shallow baking pan, tuck side down.

Place in the oven and roast for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 180C/350F/gas mark 4 and continue to roast. The exact time will depend on how you like your beef. For rare beef allow 15 minutes per lb, for medium, allow 20 mins per lb and for well done, allow 25 mins per lb.

Remove from oven and allow to rest in a warm place for 1o minutes before carving.