A specialty dish, Beef Wellington is contrived from many ingredients from the Perigord region of southwest France which is known for it’s abundance of truffles. The name may refer to Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, theoretically evolving from British campaigns into France during the Napoleonic Wars, though that has been reputed over the years and the name attributed to a civic dining engagement in Wellington, New Zealand. The true origination of the name has never been proven.
I have always recommended that high quality beef be cooked to medium-rare, at most, as it can be brought to a greater degree of doneness on an individual basis by using heated au jus. With today’s concern over different forms of bacteria, the recent “mad cow” scares, and the added apprehension of potential lawsuits, most dining establishments will not prepare any red meat rarer than medium.
Boef En Croute aka Beef Wellington
- Puff Paste Dough
- 5 lb beef tenderloin Filet “Filet Mignon”
- 1/4 cup brandy
- liver Pate
- Duxelles “scallions Sauted With Button Mmushrooms”
- 1 egg white
- French egg wash
- Sauce Perigueux
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Prepare a double portion of Pate Feuilletee (Puff Paste Dough).
Apply butter upon the beef.
Roast on a rack to an internal temperature of 120 degrees.
Remove the meat from the oven and flambe with the brandy.
Let the meat cool to room temperature.
Coat the meat thinly with the liver pate.
Roll out part of the pastry dough into a rectangle about 1 1/2″ longer and 1 1/2″ wider than the meat.
Coat the dough with cooled Duxelles.
Center the fillet on the rolled out dough.
Roll out the remaining dough and shape it over the meat.
Seal the top and bottom parts of the dough together by pinching after brushing with egg white.
Brush the exposed surfaces of the dough with French Egg Wash. Place on a greased baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees.
Bake until the crust is golden (about 20 minutes).
Let the preparation stand for 15 minutes before serving. Carve with a very sharp knife into 3/4″ thick slices.
Serve with Sauce Perigueux.
Beef Wellington is a classic specialty dish which requires a fair amount of work to properly prepare. Though it is a delicious entree, it is probably not the most “heart healthy” selection I could recommend.