Sunday, December 12, 2010

Beef Wellington with Onion Potatoes

Saturday was my hubby's birthday.  He is getting a little grumpier about his age each year.  He probably wouldn't appreciate if I mentioned how old he was.  But I'll do it anyway, he turned 36. No longer mid 30's, now he's approaching late 30's.  I feel he should embrace his age (and his slowly graying hair). Honestly, he has accomplished so much professionally, and of course personally I believe the two best things in his life are our boys.

This week has also been a little gloomy in our house because we have been fighting illness.  I had an ear and sinus infection, Jay had a sinus infection, and the boys have colds.  So to brighten up his birthday, I decided to make a fancy dinner.  The winner was beef wellington with onion potatoes.  The first time I remember having beef wellington was about five years ago. I loved it, but didn't love the price.  It is one of the priciest items on a menu, however, preparing it at home is much more economical.  Armed with my shopping list, I braved the elements, put aside my runny nose and fetched the ingredients.  The list for my version is rather short. I have made a few changes from the classic recipe, just for preference. Also I have prepared most of the dinner way ahead of time, so all I have to do is assemble and bake.  This makes a great and very impressive dish for entertaining.

recipe for beef wellington (dinner for two)

2 - 5 to 6 oz fillet Mignon, about 3/4 inch thick
1 sheet frozen puff pastry (thawed, you will need one sheet for 2 wellingtons)
1 tbsp prepared English mustard, slightly spicy
1 package of crimini mushrooms, about 10 to 15 mushrooms
1 small shallot
4 cloves of garlic
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
olive oil
1 egg beaten with a splash of water

To prepare ahead of time (can be done several hours ahead):

Douxelle: Clean mushrooms from any dirt, remove and discard stems.  Peel garlic and shallot. Place mushrooms, garlic, shallot in a mini food processor, and chop until fine.  In a medium skillet, heat about one tablespoon of olive oil and add mushroom mixture. Saute for about 4 to 5 minutes, then add thyme, salt and pepper. Cook for another couple of minutes, until the mixture has formed a "paste" and the liquid has cooked out. Put in an airtight container and refrigerate until later.

In the same skillet you just cooked the douxelle, drizzle about two tablespoons of olive oil and heat over medium heat.  Lightly season the fillets with salt and pepper.  Place fillets in pan and sear steak, about two minutes on each side.  Remove from pan and allow to cool on a plate. Cover and refrigerate until later.

Allow the puff pastry to thaw in the refrigerator over night.  You will use one sheet for two wellingtons.  You can keep the other sheet frozen for a later purpose.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Allow the sheet of pastry to sit on the counter for 5 minutes or so. Open the sheet on a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper, slightly roll the creases out.  Cut the pastry in half to form two rectangles.  Brush the pastry with the mustard in an even coat. 

Place one fillet on one rectangle of pastry. Add about 2 tablespoons of douxelle on top of the beef. 

Then wrap the pastry around the beef like a present and crimp the edges with a fork. Brush the top with egg wash, repeat the process with the second fillet.

Place the wellingtons on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake for 17 to 19 minutes. Pastry will be golden and beef will be about medium rare. Cook for an additional five mintues for medium.  (tip: If you cut it open and it is not cooked to your desired temperature, turn the broiler on and place the pan back in on the lowest rack in your oven.  Carefully watch for correct temperature.)

recipe for onion potatoes (my sister-in-law Janet's recipe)

2 lbs of small golden or red potatoes
1 pkg. onion soup mix
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tbsp. canola oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dice potatoes into bite size pieces and place in a large bowl.  Then add oil, garlic and soup mix. Stir until evenly coated.

Spread out onto cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 45 minutes, or until fork tender.

To finish our birthday dinner, we enjoyed a yellow cake with chocolate frosting. 

The children gave him their presents and home made cards.  Overall.....a good night!
Linking to these parties.

No comments:

Post a Comment