Beef Tenderloin and Pearl Onion Skewers

Beef Tenderloin and Pearl Onion Skewers

Recipes for skewered foods usually instruct you to broil the already-assembled skewers, turning each one individually to ensure even cooking. We find it more efficient to cook the unskewered cubes in a skillet, which allows you to easily flip them with a spatula. Plus, if you run out of time before the party, you can always just put out the beef cubes, the onions, and a pile of skewers and encourage guests to assemble the hors d’oeuvres themselves.

Ingredients Directions

For the onions

1 (10-ounce) bottle cocktail onions
1 tablespoon butter
salt and pepper

For the beef tenderloin

1 pound beef tenderloin, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

Prepare the onions

Drain the cocktail onions and soak them in a large bowl filled with cold water for about 1 hour. Change the water and soak for another hour. (This tones down the intense vinegar flavor just a bit.) Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring, about 4 minutes (the onions may lightly brown—that’s fine). Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.

Prepare the beef

Put the tenderloin cubes, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper in a resealable plastic bag and gently shake until cubes are coated. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. When oil is hot, add the beef and sear until the outsides of the cubes are brown and insides are still rare, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Put one onion, then one beef tenderloin cube, on each skewer or toothpick, so the hors d’oeuvres will stand up on a platter, each skewer sticking out the top. Serve warm. 

Makes about 50 skewers.

Make-Ahead Factor

The skewers can be prepared 1 day ahead and kept covered and refrigerated. Warm them in a 300°F oven for 4 to 6 minutes. (They don’t need to be piping-hot; just take the chill off. Heat them any more and you risk overcooking the beef.)

From Cocktail Parties, Straight Up! Easy Hors D'oeuvres, Delicious Drinks and Inspired Ideas for Entertaining with Style by Lauren and Anne Purcell.