Texacali Tri-Tip

Clif Family Tri Tip Recipe

Texacali Tri-Tip with Blackberry & Peppercorn Sauce

Chef John’s Texacali recipe blends the fundamentals of traditional Texas BBQ with a California twist. Instead of using the traditional dry rubbed beef brisket he elects to showcase California’s version of BBQ with a dry rubbed tri tip. By using fresh ingredients and bold flavors he creates a complex dish to perfectly pair with our  2016 Napa Valley Petite Sirah.


1 each Beef Tri-Tip (2-2.5 lbs.)
4 Tbsp coarse sea salt
2 Tbsp cracked black peppercorns
2 cups red wine (*this is a great way to use up any older red wine)
1/2 jar Clif Family Blackberry Preserves
1 tsp cornstarch + 1 tsp water
6 oz fresh blackberries
Freshly cracked black pepper and sea salt, to taste
1 tsp butter (optional)


One day prior, combine salt and cracked black peppercorns and generously coat all sides of the meat. Season heavily to ensure this salt cure seasons and penetrates the tri-tip. After seasoning, place the meat on a plate lined with paper towels and place in the refrigerator uncovered overnight.

Use a small sauce pan to reduce the wine with the blackberry jam by fifty percent or until the sauce looks thickened. If too thin, adjust consistency with a mixture of equal parts cornstarch and water. Dissolve the cornstarch in a small dish with the water until forms a paste. While the sauce is simmering, slowly whisk in the cornstarch slurry until the sauce is the desired thickness you are looking for to be served with the beef. Set sauce aside until beef is ready to be sliced.

To ensure best sear and cooking of the tri-tip, remove meat from refrigerator 45 minutes before you want to cook it and let it come to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 275F. Heat an ovenproof skillet large enough to fit the meat inside. Using a neutral oil, add about 2 Tbsp to the preheated pan. The pan should been quite hot to sear the beef, but not smoking. Gently add tri-tip and cook on all sides until well-browned, about 2-3 minutes on each side. Place the pan in the oven to finish cooking, about 30-40 minutes. Test the beef for doneness by gently pressing against it. Does the meat feel raw or just firm enough? Once the tri-tip is cooked to your desired doneness, remove from oven and let the beef rest, loosely tented with aluminum foil, for about 10 minutes to seal in juices.

While the meat is resting, slowly warm the sauce. Place the blackberries in the sauce to gently warm them. Adjust the seasoning of the sauce with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Though optional, if you desire a sauce with a little richness and roundness, melt a small amount of butter into the sauce and keep warm. Slice the tri-tip against the grain of the meat. The thinner the slice, the easier it will be to eat from the plate. Once the beef is sliced, top with sauce and warm blackberries.

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