Everyone should learn how to make a Beef Wellington at some point in their life. The combination of filet mignon and puff pastry is undeniably fantastical, plus it’s a BOSS old school culinary move to hide up your sleeve for a special occasion. Maybe you’ll bust it out at your next dinner party, maybe you’ll make one for a significant other on Valentine’s day, maybe you’ll make it by yourself, take the leftovers to work, and brag to your coworkers about it. I would. Either way, it’s rewarding, tastes amazing and guaranteed to turn even the strictest vegan into a meat eater. At the very least you get to say the word “Wellington” a ton of times in the process, which alone makes it worth your time.
for the Beef Wellington
– 2 1/2 lb filet (or whatever cut of beef you prefer)
– 1/4 lb thinly sliced prosciutto
– 6-8 blanched swiss chard leaves, stems removed
– 2 lbs cremini mushrooms
– canola or grapeseed oil
– 2 tbsp finely minced shallots
– 1 tbsp unsalted butter, 1/2 lb unsalted butter – divided
– 1/2 cup heavy cream
– fresh thyme
– 1 whole head of garlic cut in half horizontally
– 1 tbsp dijon mustard
– 7 sheets pre-made pastry dough
– 1 egg, beaten
– salt and pepper
– vegetables for sides – I used roasted carrots
– optional: bordelaise sauce – or other red wine reduction type sauce made in advance
– A1 sauce for dipping – just kidding, you’re classier than that
– salt and pepper
– food processor or blender
– cooking thermometer or probe
– plastic wrap
– rolling pin
1 – Trim and season the beef. Trim filet to an even size lengthwise. Trim off all silver skin (keep in mind the butcher can do this for you at the grocery store). Season filet with salt and pepper. Let filet sit in room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.
2 – Prepare layers ahead of time. Place a few layers thinly sliced prosciutto and blanched swiss chard leaves (no stems!) on a flat surface over 3 or 4 layers of plastic wrap.
3 – Prepare Duxelle. Blend raw cremini mushrooms in a food processor until course and consistent. Heat a pan until it’s smoking hot, add enough grapeseed or canola oil to made a thin film on the bottom of the pan. Add mushrooms, season with salt, cook until most of the moisture is released. Move mushroom mixture to outside ring of the pan and add shallots and 1 tbsp butter to the center. Once shallots are tender, add 1/2 cup cream. Once mixture is in a paste consistency, remove from heat. Let it cool. When cool, spread duxelle mixture over chard leaves with plastic wrap and a rolling pin.
4 – Sear Beef. Dry filet with a paper towel. Heat a cast iron or stainless steel pan until it is smoking hot. Add enough canola or grapeseed oil to coat pan. When oil starts to smoke, brown filet on all sides as quickly as possible.
5 – Baste Beef. When all sides are browned add 1/2 pound butter, a whole head of garlic cut in half, and a handful of thyme sprigs placed on top of beef. Baste filet with butter for about 30 seconds by tilting the pan and continuously scooping butter over top of it, then remove from heat. Brush filet with a layer of dijon mustard. Put filet in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes and cool until completely cold. Now is also a good time to preheat the oven to 475.
5 – Roll it up. When filet is cold. Use the pastic wrap to roll ingredients together, fully surrounding the filet with pre-made layers. Push the filet away from you to roll for best results. When completely rolled, take each side of the pastic wrap and secure it around the filet. Place rolled mixture in refrigerator for 20 minutes so the mold sets.
6 – Prepare pastry dough. If you make your own pastry dough, by all means do so. If you still want to look cool but not invest the time in that, buy pre-made pastry dough. It saves time and still tastes really good. Attach as many sheets together as needed to cover the entire filet. Make sure to place them flat on a couple sheets of plastic wrap, one is not enough to hold the weight. When you overlap more than one piece of dough together, make sure to cut off the excess dough so the whole plane is even.
7 – Roll it up again. Roll the filet in the pastry dough, covering it completely. Roll away from you for best results. Make sure to cover the sides as well.
8 – Decorate. If you have extra dough, decorate your wellington with a pattern! It looks way better that way.
9 – Egg Wash. Paint the wellington with the beaten egg to make sure it gets golden brown on top. Now is also a good time to season with salt and pepper.
10 – Bake. at 475 for about 35-40 minutes. The best way to monitor the progress is using a probe thermometer. If you don’t have a probe, use a regular cooking thermometer every once in awhile to check on it. You want the inside to be right around 128 degrees for medium / medium rare. If you do not have a convection oven, rotate the wellington every ten minutes.
11 – Prepare sides. Here we have some simple roasted carrots.
12 – Admire. And let sit for at least 10 minutes.
13 – Cut. Very carefully.
14 – Serve. The best medium rare piece from the middle first. Then add your sides and sauce
15 – EAT.
16 – Say “you’re welcome” at least 20 times to whomever you’re with.
17 – Eat leftovers.
P.S. shoutout to Tom for all the help with this. It was one of the best Christmas dinners we’ve ever had!