A Wellington Wellington is the perfect holiday table centrepiece!
• 10g dried porcini mushrooms
• 50g butter
• 2 shallots, finely chopped
• 300g mixed mushrooms (eg chestnut, oyster, shitaake
• finely chopped)
• 3 sprigs of thyme, leaves picked
• 200ml madeira
• 2 tbsp double cream
• 1 tbsp vegetable oil
• 800g - 1 kilogram beef fillet
• 500g block all-butter puff pastry, plus 250 grams for the
• 1 egg, beaten, to glaze
• 6 slices parma ham
1. Preheat the oven, and a flat baking sheet, to 200C (220C fan). Soak the porcini in 150ml boiling water for 20 minutes, then remove and finely chop. Reserve the soaking water. Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat and cook the shallots until just golden, then add the mixed mushrooms, porcini and thyme and some salt and pepper and cook until softened. Pour in 150ml madeira and turn up the heat, cooking until the wine has evaporated. Take off the heat, and scoop ¾ of the mixture into a bowl. Mix in the double cream, taste for seasoning, and set aside.
2. Heat the oil in a pan over a high heat and, when smoking, add the fillet and sear briefly on all sides until crusted. Season well and allow to cool. Don't wash the pan yet - you'll need it for making the sauce.
3. Roll out the 500 gram block of pastry into rectangles about 30cm x 35cm and 3mm thick. Brush all over with egg, and then spread with the cream duxelle mixture. Lay the parma ham over the mushrooms and finally place the fillet on top, bending so that it is the shape of a backwards capital J and carefully roll up, finally turning it and positioning it seam-side down. Trim the edges and tuck in to seal the parcel. Using the smaller piece of pastry, cut 0.5 cm wide strips and lay across the, now wellington boot shaped, pastry parcel, in a lattice pattern. Paint with egg and place into the fridge to rest for at least 30 minutes.
4. . When well rested, put the wellington on to the hot baking sheet and cook for 30 minutes until golden, then set aside to rest for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Deglaze the beef pan with the remaining madeira and then add the remaining mushroom and shallot mixture and the porcini soaking liquid, allowing everything to reduce slightly. Taste, season, and serve with the beef wellington.