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Beef Wellington

I know, I know,  I said that this blog didn’t have “fancy” recipes, but consider this one of my exceptions. I was first introduced to Beef Wellington when I went to Fleming’s Steakhouse a few years ago. While browsing the menu, it jumped out at me:

Filet mignon? Check!
Mushrooms? Check!
Wrapped in flaky puff pastry? Check!

It didn’t take me long to figure out what I was ordering, and I was in love. I hadn’t thought about it recently but then it was featured as a challenge on The Next Food Network Star competition, and I started craving it again, this time resolving to make it at home. The classic preparation of this dish involves searing a beef tenderloin and topping it with mushroom duxelles, a slice of goose or duck liver, and wrapped in puff pastry. I made individual servings by wrapping single servings of filet mignon in  the puff pastry, and it was definitely one of the most gourmet meals I have made at home, and absolutely worth it! Served with garlic smashed potatoes and green beans, it was a fabulous meal. And to top it off, I can now cross Beef Wellington off of my “Top 100” list!

Although this recipe called for goose or duck liver, or pate, placed on top of the mushroom duxelles, I omitted it. It just didn’t really sound all that appetizing and I didn’t even know where I would buy such a thing. I don’t think it made a difference, because this was such a fantastic dish. I hadn’t heard of duxelles before the Food Network show, but according Wikipedia, a duxelles is “a finely chopped (minced) mixture of mushrooms or mushrooms stems, onions, shallots, and herbs sauteed in butter, and reduced to a paste (sometimes cream is used as well). It is a basic preparation used in stuffings and sauces (notably, beef wellington), or as a garnish. Duxelles could also be filled into a pocket of raw pastry and baked as a savory tart (similar to a hand-held pie).”

You’ll notice that the filet is much more well done than you would find a filet mignon; this was not intentional. The times in this recipe are intended to deliver a medium-rare meat; as I usually like my filets around medium, I seared them for an extra 1 minute per side and baked in the oven for the same amount of time as the recipe states. So take note of the size of your filets and monitor the doneness with a thermometer. I do have to say, even though I felt that these filets were a little more done than I would have preferred, the combination of the duxelles and puff pastry still produced a really moist and tasty cut of meat.

Individual Beef Wellington

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients:

4 (6-ounce) thickly cut filet mignons
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 (1-ounce) slices goose or duck liver, or pork country-style pate
One-half (17 1/4-ounce package) frozen puff pastry (1 sheet), thawed
Mushroom Duxelles, recipe follows
1 large egg beaten with 2 teaspoons water to make an egg wash

Mushroom Duxelles:
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons minced shallots
½ teaspoon minced garlic
10 ounces button mushrooms, wiped clean, stemmed, and finely chopped
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
2½ tablespoons dry white wine

Directions:

1. To make the Mushroom Duxelles: Heat the butter in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms, salt, and white pepper, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, stirring, until all the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms begin to caramelize, about 12 minutes. Add the wine and cook, stirring to deglaze the pan, until all the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat and let cool before using.

2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

3. Season both sides of each filet with ¼ teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of the pepper.

4. Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the filets and sear for 1 minute on each side for medium-rare. Transfer to a plate to cool completely.

5. Roll out the puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 14-inch square, and cut into 4 (7-inch) squares.

6. Spread one-quarter of the mushroom duxelles on top of each filet and top each with 1 slice of the pate, pressing to flatten. Place one filet, mushroom side down, in the center of a puff pastry square. Using a pastry brush or your finger, paint the inside edges of the pastry with egg wash. Fold the pastry over the filet as though wrapping a package and press the edges to seal. Place the packages seam-side down on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the egg wash over the tops and sides of each package and bake until the pastry is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer registers 140 degrees F for medium-rare, about 20 minutes.

7. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

(Adapted from Emeril Lagasse)

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27 Responses to “Beef Wellington”

  1. bunny on July 26, 2008 at 7:08 am

    I saw this on the foodnet work challenge too. yours looks absolutely wonderful!! great job!!

    Reply

  2. Carrie on July 26, 2008 at 8:58 am

    I have to try this, it looks really good.

    Reply

  3. Autumn on July 26, 2008 at 9:00 am

    I’m impressed!! Looks yummy!!

    Reply

  4. kmays on July 26, 2008 at 10:34 am

    My goodness, that looks rich!

    Reply

  5. Megan on July 26, 2008 at 10:57 am

    How funny – my mother orders this every time we go to Flemings – maybe I’ll impress her and make it myself! Congratulations on crossing another item off your list!

    Reply

  6. Ally on July 26, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Oh wow Chelle! I love beef wellington and now I’m craving it after seeing your pic! Love it!

    Reply

  7. Inna on July 26, 2008 at 4:40 pm

    Wow, how fancy! This looks incredible!

    Reply

  8. Kate on July 26, 2008 at 6:07 pm

    I decided since you have a new blog, you might have new readers so I tagged you for a meme:
    http://katorade.blogspot.com/2008/07/underneath-western-skies.html

    Reply

  9. Amber on July 27, 2008 at 10:08 am

    This looks delicious!! I bet it was an incredible meal.

    Reply

  10. Annie on July 27, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    I’m really not a big fan of red meat but this looks delicious! I know Ben would love it so I’m definitely going to give it a try.

    Reply

    • J on April 16th, 2013 at 4:36 pm

      You can make it with chicken breast or pork fillet.

      Reply

  11. Katie on July 28, 2008 at 6:28 am

    Oh, my husband LOVES when I make beef wellington. I LOVE the mushroom duxelles with this. I’ll have to give it a try next time we make it!

    Reply

  12. ashley on August 4, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    seriously this looks amazing. looks so tender and delish!

    Reply

  13. Carrie on August 19, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    I made this last weekend for my husband and I, thank you for sharing!

    Reply

  14. Dene on April 1, 2010 at 10:24 am

    So I was just introduced to your blog by a coworker who always makes your cupcakes. Last night was my 3rd anniversary with my now finace, and I wanted to WOW him with an amazing meal.

    This was the first recipe that I’ve made from your site, and it was AMAZING. I’ve had beef wellington at restaurants, and this one was right up there with the best (in my humble opinion). The directions were so easy to follow, and it turned out perfect! I served it with your suggestion of garlicky mashed potatoes and steamed asparagas w/ brown butter.

    One suggestion I have is getting two larger filets. I had trouble finding individual sized portion filets, so we had a hard time finishing ours. But next time, for 4 servings, I think I’ll do 2 large filets and then cut them in half to make individual servings.

    My fiance’s words last night: “I think this is the best meal I’ve ever had.” Mission accomplished!

    Reply

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  18. Joe Brubaker on December 21, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    Wow, I would be way too embarrassed to display a photo of well done beef wellington on my website! Shame, shame!

    Reply

    • LMN on February 7th, 2013 at 8:13 am

      Some people don’t like bleeding beef…what a snob you are.

      Reply

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  20. Katrina on March 20, 2013 at 7:32 am

    I just made this last night for my family and my boyfriend. My mom is allergic to mushrooms so I left those out and used a premade duck pate (instead of the slice of duck liver) and it came out amazing. I seared the meat for a little more than 1 minute on each side (I used beef filet instead of filet mignon, I figured for a test run it wouldn’t be a bad idea). It was unbelievable and everyone couldn’t stop talking about it, thanks for the great recipe!

    Reply

  21. John on August 9, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    How about using three kinds of shrooms…shiitake, portobello, and button? Also, add some Dijon mustard. All in the name of adding flavor. Suggestions were from Chef Ramsey and Epicurious and sounded wonderful.

    Reply

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