Sitting in front of my TV one night, I watched in fascination as a young man in a cooking competition made Beef Wellington. No disrespect to him but the thought that went through my mind was, “I could do that.” I mean, the crust is ready-made. How difficult can this be? Not very. Not really.
So to make Beef Wellington for one you must first make chicken liver pate (recipe here) one day ahead. But that’s a fairly straight-forward process.
And then, on to the Beef Wellington:
- bacon-wrapped fillet
- four mushrooms, chopped
- one-quarter or less of a small onion, chopped
- two rectangles of crescent roll dough, leaving the two triangles of dough in each attached together
- 1 Tablespoon of liver pate
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
Add oil to skillet. While the oil heats, remove the bacon around the outside of the meat, then sear the tenderloin quickly on all sides in the hot pan. (You don’t want to cook the meat at this point but to sear it and give it a nicely browned crust). When browned, remove meat from pan and set aside. Saute mushrooms and onion in same pan. When done remove mushroom onion mixture to bowl and add the liver pate. Blend the two mixtures together with a fork.
Open roll dough container, place one of the two rectangles of dough on a work surface. Reserving a small amount of the mushroom/onion mixture for the top of the fillet, spread the rest over your rectangle of dough from the center out, leaving about a half-inch of dough uncovered all around. Place fillet in center of dough. Then, spread the rest of the mushroom/onion mixture over top of the fillet. Top with another two-triangle dough sheet. Wrap dough around fillet and seal the two dough pieces together by folding them over each other.
Place the uncooked Beef Wellington on a baking sheet. Brush pastry all around with egg-yolk wash (one egg yolk beaten with a few drops of water). Slash top of dough. Bake on the bottom rack of a pre-heated, 450 degree oven for four minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees, bake another five to eight minutes until dough is golden brown.
Keep an eye on it while cooking. Ovens vary. This is high heat and such a small bundle can cook quickly. Remember, you want the meat to stay rare, while the dough becomes golden.