In my humble opinion, this is the King of all beef recipes. Even the name of it sounds kind of like British Royalty, no? Either way, this recipe totally lives up to its formidable moniker. It looks impressive and tastes divine but does not take a lot of complicated culinary maneuvering to put together.
The ingredients are a bit on the extravagant side (it is not often that we serve a filet mignon loin), but the recipe itself is quite simple. I successfully made this for my husband’s birthday party, without any prior experience, and replicated it again over the Thanksgiving weekend with great results. Do give yourself an extra day to get this recipe put together, or at least a few hours. That way all you’ll have to do is bake it and it’ll be ready to go without rushing around.
Beef Wellington (serves 8-10)
Beef filet loin – 2lbs (We bought a 4lb loin because that was the smallest size I found, and I used half of it for the Wellington and sliced up the rest into steaks.)
1 package baby bella mushrooms
1 medium onion
5-6 slices prosciutto
2 sheets pre-made puff pastry, thawed
1 egg yolk, for brushing
1 tablespoon of thyme – dry or fresh
olive oil for cooking
salt and pepper to taste
1 DAY (or a few hours) in advance of serving, salt, pepper and sear the loin on all sides in some hot olive oil. Don’t over-cook it, as it will cook some more in the oven later.
Set the browned loin aside to cool. Clean and chop the mushrooms and onion very finely in a food processor into a homogenous mixture. Put back in the pan where you seared the loin, and cook – stirring – on medium heat, with salt, pepper, and thyme added, until the moisture has evaporated and you are left with something resembling a coarse pate. Set aside.
Across a long sheet of shrink wrap, lay out the slices of prosciutto slightly overlapping. Spread the mushroom mixture in an even layer over the prosciutto. Lay the loin on top of the mushrooms, perpendicular to the prosciutto slices. (Make sure all the ingredients are cool before doing this).
Fold in all the edges of the shrink wrap, so that the loin is wrapped tightly in the prosciutto. Place into the fridge over night or at least for a few hours. Do not take out until about 45 minutes before you are ready to serve!
Prior to serving, unfold the sheets of thawed puff pastry, slightly overlapping onto a lightly floured surface. With a rolling-pin, flatten them out thinner, so that the entire loin can be wrapped in the dough. Take the shrink-wrap off the loin and place loin in the center of the dough so that the seams of the prosciutto and long edges of dough are facing the same direction. Fold in and wrap the loin tightly like a burrito and then flip over onto a greased baking sheet, seam side down. Brush the top with some egg yolk for a shiny finish.
Bake according to the directions on the puff pastry box, but in any case not longer than 20 minutes! Once the Wellington is done, it is key to let it sit, covered for at least 15 minutes prior to carving. If you do not do this, your doughy shell is going to be a flaky, crumbly mess.
I find that some horseradish mashed potatoes and maybe a touch of red wine sauce are the perfect accompaniment to this melt-in-the-mouth deliciousness.