2 weeks ago, it was "March Break". I don't know why, but having Brandon home for the week threw me off a little. It's probably why I am only getting around to finishing up this post (from 2 weeks ago) now. Well it was probably more than that. March break, basement renovations, laser eye surgery... if you know what I mean!?!?
The following is a recipe for a simplified beef wellington from Jamie Oliver's "Cooking Revolution".
It was okay... but there's more on that below the recipe :-)
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
1 medium onion
1 celery stalk
2 clovers garlic
2 portobello mushrooms
4 sprigs rosemary
a big handful of frozen peas
1 large egg
1 lb good quality ground beef
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
2 sheets puff pastry, defrosted in frozen
(I. PREPARE YOUR GROUND BEEF MIXTURE)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel and chop onion, celery, carrot, and potato into 1/4-inch-sized-dice.
Finely grate the garlic.
Clean and roughly chop the mushrooms so they're about the same size as your other veggies.
Place all the vegetables into a large frying pan over medium-low heat with 2 "lugs" of olive oil.
Put the vegetable mixture into a large bowl and let cool completely.
Crack the egg into a cup and beat it up.
Add the ground beef to the bowl with a good pinch of salt and pepper and half the beaten egg.
With clean hands, scrunch and mix up well.
(II. ROLL AND FILL YOUR PASTRY)
Lightly dust your clean work surface and rolling pin with flour.
Lay the puff pastry sheets one on top of the other.
Roll out the puff pastry so it is roughly 12 x 16 inches.
(Dust with flour as you go)
Turn pastry so you have a long edge in front of you.
Place the ground beef mixture along this edge.
Mould the beef into an even, long sausage shape.
Brush the edges of the pastry with some of the beaten egg.
Roll the ground beef up in the pastry until it's covered completely.
Squeeze ends together.
Dust a large cookie pan with flour and place your Wellington on top.
Brush all over with the rest of the beaten egg.
Bake in preheated oven for an hour (until golden).
(III. THE RESULT)
I had high hopes for this recipe and it didn't quite meet my expectations. Mostly because of the the puff pastry (maybe it was the particular brand I used... maybe I should try making my own next time?) The pastry was okay, though not as crispy as I would have like and more importantly it didn't keep nicely for leftovers. On the up side the beef mixture with the rosemary and garlic combination was incredibly tasty (I actually think rosemary and garlic is now one of my favorite flavour combinations).
That being said, it is one of the few "trial "Gourmet recipes that Brandon expressed any desire for me to make again. Some of his other favorites have been the pumpkin spice cake (which I've made a few times since), rosemary leg of lamb, strawberry cheesecake trifle, and lamb kefta in rojan josh sauce. The next recipe I will feature in this series is the most surprisingly yummy addition to my regular rotation of dinners - Cranberry and Maple Sausage Chili - seriously yummy and extremely simple. Coming soon...