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MasterChef All Stars

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Ep 8: Beef wellington


Beef wellington

Serves: 4
Preparation: 40 minutes, plus 20 chilling, 40 resting
Cooking: 1 hour 30 minutes 

Beef Fillet
500g beef fillet
1 tablespoon olive oil

Sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
500g small beef bones
2 shallots, thinly sliced
6 black peppercorns
4 sprigs thyme
1 clove garlic, bruised
1 bay leaf
80ml port
200ml red wine
500ml veal stock
80ml veal glace
40g butter, chopped

Crepes
2 cups (300g) plain flour
2 eggs
625ml (2½ cups) full cream milk
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
1 tablespoon finely chopped flat leaf parsley
1 teaspoon finely chopped tarragon
50g butter, chopped

Mushroom filling
40g dried porcini mushrooms
40ml olive oil
30g butter, chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
200g Swiss brown mushrooms, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon finely chopped tarragon
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

To assemble
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
4-5 slices Iberico Ham
1 large sheet puff pastry, approximately 40x40cm (or a block of puff pastry rolled to same)
3 egg yolks 

1 For beef fillet, preheat oven 200°C fan forced. Rub oil into beef fillet and season with salt and pepper. Place a large frying pan over high heat. Add beef and cook until all sides are browned. Set aside to cool.

2 Start the sauce, place a heavy non stick roasting pan onto the stove top over medium heat, add oil and beef bones and cook, turning until they are evenly coloured on all sides. Place pan into the oven and roast for 20 minutes until browned. Using tongs remove beef bones to a large saucepan. Allow to sit until required.

3 For crepes, sift flour into a bowl, add a pinch of salt. Make a well in the centre of the flour, while whisking slowly pour in eggs and 2/3 of the milk. Whisk vigorously from the centre, incorporating the flour to form a smooth thick batter. Whisk in the remaining milk and melted butter to form a loose smooth batter the consistency of thick cream. Set aside to rest for 15 minutes. Stir in herbs. Add extra milk if required to thin the batter.

4 Melt a little of the butter in a large (25cm base) non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Ladle some of the crepe batter into the pan and quickly swirl around to cover the base to create a thin crepe. Cook until the crepe is a slight golden brown, turn over and cook a further 30-45 seconds until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside. Repeat using the remaining crepe batter. You will need at least 4 crepes.

5 For mushroom filling, place dried porcini mushrooms in a small bowl and add just enough boiling water to cover, stand for 15 minutes and drain. Rinse under running water to remove grit and press to squeeze out any excess fluid. Heat oil and butter in a large frying pan over high heat. Add shallots, Swiss brown mushrooms and garlic, cook until soft and golden. Stir in re-hydrated porcini mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Tip the mushroom mixture into a sieve to drain any excess liquid and spread out over an oven tray to cool to room temperature. Roughly chop mushroom mixture to 0.5mm-1cm dice and stir through parsley, tarragon and mustard.

6 Place an oven tray into oven to preheat.

7 To assemble
, brush the beef fillet with Dijon mustard to cover. Lay a piece of cling wrap on the bench in front of you. Lay the Iberico ham slices vertically away from you and slightly overlapping on the cling wrap. Spread an even layer of mushroom mixture over the ham slices, place beef fillet on one end horizontally and roll up to encase the beef tightly.

8 Lay crepes on a large piece of cling wrap, slightly overlapping to create a square on bench top. Remove cling wrap from beef and place the beef roll in the centre of the crepes and cut away the corners of the crepes to create a cross shape/plus sign allowing 1cm gap between the beef and the cut corner. Roll to encase tightly and wrap tightly in cling film. Rest in the freezer for 10 minutes, making sure it is cool and firm making it easier to handle.

9 Remove cling wrap from beef, place beef in the centre of the pastry sheet seam-side up. Cut four corners out of the pastry (reserving the cut outs) so the pastry resembles a cross shape, ensuring it is long enough on all sides to enclose the fillet completely. Carefully lift side flaps of pastry up over the beef roll so they just overlap, trimming as necessary.  Mix the egg yolks and salt together and brush over pastry to seal edges.

10 Trim the pastry piece closest to you to just cover half the base of the roll and roll firmly to encase. Trim the pastry edge so they just overlap, press and seal with egg wash. Place seam-side down on a sheet of baking paper on a non-stick roasting tray and ensure all edges are completely sealed.

11 With un-used pastry, cut three 4cm discs and place in a line down the centre of the beef roll. Cut a 1cm hole in the centre of each pastry disc to allow excess moisture to escape.  Brush top and sides of pastry evenly with egg wash removing excess with the pastry brush and place in freezer for 10 minutes to chill the pastry.

12 Place chilled beef wellington on a sheet of baking paper seam side down. Transfer to the preheated tray and bake for 30-35 minutes. Use a meat thermometer to check the temperature of the fillet inside. It should be around 46°C. Allow to rest for 20-25 minutes before carving.

13 Meanwhile finish the sauce, place the saucepan of bones over a medium heat, add sliced shallots, peppercorns, thyme, garlic, bay leaf and season with salt. Cook, stirring until shallots are golden. Add the port and red wine and reduce by two thirds. Add the veal stock and veal glace. Bring to the boil and skim off any scum or impurities that rise to the surface. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 20 minutes or until reduced to a sauce consistency, season to taste. Strain sauce through a muslin-lined sieve into a clean saucepan to remove any sediment. The sauce should be viscous enough to sit on the plate without being too runny but not too thick to be sticky, you may need to reduce it further after straining. Then slowly whisk in enough small cubes of butter to add shine.

14 To serve, carve beef wellington into thick slices and serve with the sauce on the side.


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