Everyone knows the classic Beef Wellington, which is perfect for special occasions and a showstopper on the dinner table. This recipe for a classic Wellington comes from renowned chef Jeff Baker at Farmisons & Co. online butcher and heritage meats near Ripon in the U.K. Though this recipe says for two, it’ll do just fine for a table of four, with small appetites, says Jeff.
We swapped out the dry aged beef for a piece of venison which is a beautiful, lean, tasty meat and works so very well in this recipe. The cut of meat is a loin fillet which is off the bone and to make sure it is an even piece to use for the Wellington, is cut from the center of the loin.
- 1 1.25-lb/550 g loin of venison as above or boneless saddle
- 1 teaspoon/5 ml goose or duck fat, massaged into beef
- 1.5 cups/300 g Paris brown mushrooms
- 2 banana shallots, peeled and diced
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 10 tarragon leaves, chopped
- 5 teaspoons/25 ml sweet sherry or madeira
- 1/4 cup/25 g unsalted butter
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 savory pancakes, approx 30 cm diameter
- 2.5 cups/350 g all-butter puff pastry
- 1 egg yolk mixed with 1 teaspoon/5 ml milk and beaten
How to Cook the Duxelle:
Soften the shallots and garlic in 2 teaspoon/10 g butter over a gentle heat.
Add the mushrooms, raise the heat, and cook until all the moisture has gone.
Add the sherry and cook until dry once more.
Taste the mixture and season with salt and pepper.
Add the chopped tarragon and set to one side to cool.
How to Cook the Venison:
Sear the venison in a very hot frying pan, seasoning with salt and pepper until a rich color has formed.
Add the remaining butter and baste the foaming butter over the meat for 3 to 4 minutes.
Remove from pan and chill until the fillet is cold.
Assemble the Wellington:
Roll out the pastry to an oblong approximately 12 inches/30 cm square and 5mm thick, making sure the pastry will wrap around both the meat and the duxelle.
Trim and lay the pancakes onto the pastry, leaving a 4-inch/10 cm pastry edge at top and bottom. Spread a thin layer of duxelle over the pancakes
Position the beef two-thirds of the way up the duxelle. Brush the edges of pastry with the egg and milk mix.
Taking care not to tear the pastry, start at the point nearest to you and fold the parcel over encasing all the filling. Gently seal the folded edge furthest away from you using the outer side of your small finger
Gently indent into the sealed edge a table fork creating a secure seal. Trim the excess pastry away 1/2-inch/10 mm from the fold.
Carefully score the pastry top with a sharp knife, making sure you don’t go through the pastry and expose the filling.
Brush with the egg and milk mix, place onto a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake in a preheated oven, 365 F/185 C fan for approximately 30 minutes, the pastry should be golden brown and brittle when cooked.
Using a meat thermometer, check the temperature of the beef which should be 130 F/54C after resting for 10 minutes, remove the Wellington from the oven at 122 F/50C if you want a pink beef wellington.
Venison and aged center-cut fillet of beef and other heritage meats can be ordered from Farmisons Online.