A classic dish, Beef Wellington requires a center cut of beef tenderloin, plus any good quality pork, duck or chicken liver pate. The spreadable soft style, not coarse cut or minced style, is best.
The term “duxelles” refers to a number of variations on a preparation of mushrooms sautéed with onions, shallots, garlic, and parsley, used to make stuffing or sauce.
For the duxelles:
- 1/2 lb mushrooms
- 3 Tbsp finely chopped shallot
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- ¼ cup sherry
Chop mushrooms very small or process in food processor in 2 small batches. If using a food processor, press mushrooms between towels to rid the mushrooms of excess moisture. Mince shallots. Heat butter in medium hot skillet, taking care not to burn the butter. Add mushrooms and shallots and cook both till soft and somewhat dried. Add sherry, plus salt and pepper to taste. Continue cooking on low heat until mixture becomes almost a paste. Add a little more cold butter at the end with heat off, if necessary, to bring mixture together. Put aside.
To create the Beef Wellington:
- 2/3 cup liver pate
- 1 package frozen puff pastry sheets
- 1 center cut local beef tenderloin
- 1 cup duxelles of mushroom
- 1 egg stirred into 1/4 cup of water (egg wash)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Thaw the puff pastry sheets and remove them from package. Lay out the sheets and join together, by pinching, as necessary to create one flat sheet of puff pastry large enough to wrap the entire piece of tenderloin one time with a minimal welt, or seam. This welt will be placed the bottom and cap pieces for both ends.
Cut the room temperature tenderloin, removing the round butt piece at one end and the tail at the other, leaving a piece that is generally a cylinder. Lightly season meat with salt and pepper.
Spread a thin layer (1/4”) of the pate over entire tenderloin and try to handle beef so as to not rub it off. Follow with a layer of the cooled duxelles in the same fashion. Next, place the covered tenderloin with what you ultimately want to be the top, “face” down in the center of the puff pastry sheet. Pull the pastry sheet sides up and around the length of the meat. Join the two ends lengthwise along the center line of the bottom by moistening with a little egg wash and pinching together firmly. Create and attach pastry end caps in similar fashion. Invert your entire pastry package of meat right so that it is now right side up. Place in a shallow roasting pan and make a few slits diagonally though the top of the pastry, but not into the meat, with a sharp knife. Brush the remaining egg wash evenly over top of Wellington, including the ends. Place dish into the oven and cook for about 40 minutes, or more specifically, until a meat thermometer indicates an internal temperature of 130 degrees. The internal temperature of the beef will continue to rise for a while after it has been removed from the oven, and care must be taken not to overcook the beef. When the Beef Wellington has been removed from the oven, allow it to rest for at least 10 or 15 minutes
Serve with roasted rosemary potatoes.