Spiced Beef Tenderloin
Redolent of warm winter spices, this silky beef requires a bit of advance planning because you're essentially curing the meat—but it's very easy to do. (If you cut the marinating time to 1 day, the results will be good but not quite as silky or flavorful.) You can roast the beef up to 2 days ahead and serve it warm or at room temperature, with crusty rolls for making little sandwiches if you like. It's also very good with a spicy-sweet chutney.
If you have whole spices instead of already ground, grind them along with the peppercorns in the amounts called for below. Many butchers will trim the tenderloin of excess fat and tie it as a roast for you, but you can also buy untrimmed, untied loins (they're usually cheaper) and do it yourself. Once you've trimmed off the fat with a sharp knife, tie the roast at 2-in. intervals with separate pieces of kitchen twine to give it an even shape as it cooks.