Beef Wellington

We’re back! It’s a brand new year, so to start if off right I have a great recipe for you.

I  made this dish a few days before Christmas so we could get our parents together for lunch at our house.  It’s a Gordon Ramsay recipe, and I had been wanting to try it for months, so the year could not end without me cooking Beef Wellington!
It’s a beef fillet, originally it is coated with paté and then wrapped in puffed pastry to bake. This recipe does not use paté, but rather a mushroom paste (just throw them in the food processor)and parma ham.  You can find puff pastry at some bakeries or even in the frozen section at the supermarket.

Since I wanted to enjoy our parents’ visit instead of being inside the kitchen the whole time, I made some of the steps a day ahead.  I prepared the whole thing (kept it in the refrigerator) so that next morning I just had to roll the puff pastry, wrap it and bake it.

Be warned, you have to use 1lb beef fillets, otherwise you will not be able to roll the ham around it. If you have a large 2lb piece, cut it into two, to make more than one Beef Wellington.  Two of them will be enough for 8 people.  I learned this the hard way, I thought I could make one large beef wellington using the whole piece, and after I tried rolling it, realized it wasn’t the way to go.  I had to start over.  I was pissed, and it was messy.   Fortunately, I pulled it off.

Beef Wellington

Ingredients

1 lb beef tenderloin fillet
Salt and pepper
Vegetable Oil
1 lb mushrooms (I used portabello)
10 thin slices ham (Parma ham if you can get it) or prosciutto
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
7 ounces puff pastry (needs 3 hours to defrost in refrigerator if using frozen)
2 egg yolks, beaten

Procedure:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Heat a tablespoon or two of oil in a large pan on high heat. Season the fillet generously with salt and pepper. Sear the fillet in the pan on all sides until well browned (hint: do not move the fillet until it has had a chance to brown). Remove the fillet from the pan, brush the fillet on all sides with mustard. Set aside.
  3. Chop the mushrooms and put them into a food processor and purée. Heat a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Scrape the mushroom purée into the pan and let cook down (don’t put anything in the pan, the mushrooms will release a lot of water), allowing the mushrooms to release their moisture. When the moisture released by the mushrooms has boiled away, set aside the mushrooms to cool.
  4. Roll out a large piece of plastic wrap. Lay out the slices of ham on the plastic wrap so that they overlap. Spread the mushroom mixture over the ham, trying to make a rectangle shape. Place the beef fillet in the middle, roll the mushroom and ham over the fillet, using the plastic wrap so that you do this tightly. Wrap up the beef fillet into a tight barrel shape, twisting the ends of the plastic wrap to secure. ( it should look like a wrapped candy)
  5. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.  ( I made this one day ahead)
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the puff pastry sheet to a size that will wrap around the beef fillet. Unwrap the fillet from the plastic wrap and place in the middle of the pastry dough. Brush the edges of the pastry with the beaten eggs. Fold the pastry around the fillet, cutting off any excess at the ends (pastry that is more than 2 layers thick will not cook all the way, try to limit the overlap). Place on a small plate, seam side down, and brush beaten egg yolks all over the top. Chill for 5-10 minutes.
  7. Place the pastry-wrapped fillet on a baking pan. Brush the exposed surface again with beaten eggs. Score the top of the pastry with a sharp knife, not going all the way through the pastry. Sprinkle the top with coarse salt. Bake for 25-35 minutes. The pastry should be nicely golden when done. (To ensure that your roast is medium rare, test with an instant read meat thermometer. Pull out at 125-130°F for medium rare.) Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Slice in 1-inch thick slices.

Serves 4.

Here’s the video to help you out!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1orR1HGv0s

 

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