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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Beef Wellington

The origin of the name is unclear... But the goodness that comes from making the dish is known by all who has tried it (if you tried it and didn't like it then there could be something wrong with you). Beef Wellington is the combination of beef tenderloin, pate (which I opt not to use), duxelles, all wrapped up in a puff pastry... I've seen some recipes include wrapping the coated meat in a crepe to retain the moisture and prevent it making the pastry soggy - but I've yet to try that but it sounds like a good idea... Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.



The Beef Tenderloin

Start with good meat. These came from my local market. Trim off any fat (if there is any), and give them a nice salt and peppering. You will want to sear these off on a grill or a rocket hot pan. Depending on your desired doneness you can throw them in the oven for 10 min or so to cook them a bit - I like mine medium...






Duxelles

1 lb mushrooms, chopped
3 Tbsp butter, unsalted please
1 Shallot, finely chopped
1/2 tsp dried thyme (or can use fresh)
1/4 Cup Dry vermouth, sherry, or white wine
Salt
Pepper

Pulse the mushrooms and shallot in a food processor until you get a fine dice but not a paste. Put the mushroom mixture into a clean towel and squeeze out as much liquid as you can. Heat a large (10-inch) non-stick skillet over a burner set between medium and medium-high. Add in 1.5 tablespoons of the butter and let it melt. Add mushrooms, shallots, a pinch of salt, a pinch of black pepper, and thyme. In about five minutes the mushrooms will start to seem dry and will start to brown. Stir in the remaining butter, then once incorporated add the vermouth, sherry, or wine. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vermouth has evaporated. Remove from the pan and let cool.



Puff The Magic Pastry

Feel free to make your own but I buy my from Pillsbury... Thaw the pastry according to the package.











Assemble

Add a base of the mushrooms to the center of the pastry, then put on the beef. Top with more mushrooms. fold over the longer sides, brushing with a simple egg wash (1 egg 1 Tbsp water) to seal. Trim the ends if necessary and brush with egg wash and fold over to completely seal the beef. Save the ends to use as a decoration on top if desired. Brush the top of the pastry with egg wash then make a couple of slits in the top of the pastry using the tip of a paring knife. I find that you will have a crisper crust if you put in a few vents - letting the steam escape makes since right? Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until pastry is golden brown. Remove from oven and rest before serving. You can use an instant read thermometer to test the doneness of of the meat.

Medium-Rare145 °F
Medium155 °F
Medium-Well165 °F
Well Done170 °F


The finished dish...

This is really easy to do. It's one of my favorites...

Bon Appetit...

~Nikko

P.S. - I have a video for this dish but really need to remake it... It's long and the video quality sucks...

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