Do you ever find yourself obsessed with TV shows? It happens to me a lot, especially if I have the self-restraint to wait until a show is completed so I can binge watch. There’s something so satisfying about clicking next episode over and over again until you’ve reached the conclusion.
Downton Abbey is something that I’ve been holding out on because it’s just about to reach it’s sixth and final season. I so desperately wanted to wait, but I gave in to temptation and now I’m cursing myself because I absolutely need to see season six immediately. I love so many things about Downton, but what I find particularly fascinating – aside from the hair, clothes, and intrigue – is the food. I’ve always had a soft spot for English food.
Things like Cornish pasties, fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, bangers and mash, and Yorkshire puddings are some of my favorite comfort foods. Not to mention the gloriousness that is a perfectly warm scone with clotted cream, jam, and a perfect cup of tea. It’s enough to make me swoon. So, imagine just how over the moon I am to have a chance to be going to London to see a couple of Downton Abbey locations. I’m so (so so) excited to be going to Highclere Castle (the real Downton) to have tea! I feel so fancy.
Speaking of fancy, the next time you want to impress someone with your British culinary wizardry, make these mini beef wellingtons. They’re a golden burnished brown on the outside, but on the inside they’re a perfectly medium-rare pink. The tender, juicy beef is a nice foil against the flakiness of the pastry. There’s also secret added layers of deliciousness: thinly sliced parma ham, thyme butter roasted mushrooms, and a generous amount of Grey Poupon for a bit of a kick. I served these with a bit of garlicky mashed potatoes, but they’re perfect on their own as well.
These seem a little finicky, but the truth is, they’re time consuming more than finicky. Take a couple of hours, relax and give these little guys a go. Maybe even for the Downton premier of season six?
Mini Beef Wellingtons
makes 6 individual portions
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 lb mushrooms, finely chopped
- 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 lb beef tenderloin/filet, cut into cubes
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1-2 tablespoons Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard, or to taste
- 6 slices parma ham
- 2 sheets of puff pastry, thawed
- 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water
Melt the butter over medium low heat. When melted, add the mushrooms and thyme and cook, without stirring, 5 minutes. Stir and continue to cook until all moisture has cooked out and mushrooms resemble a smooth paste. Taste and season with salt and pepper, remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
While the mushrooms are cooking, pat the filet cubes dry and season withe salt and pepper. Heat oil in a cast iron pan over very high heat and sear all sides of the filet, 1 minute per side. Remove from the pan and let rest.
Use a pastry brush and brush on a generous amount of dijon on to all sides of the filets.
On a piece of plastic wrap, lay out a slice of prosciutto and spread a thin layer of mushrooms on. Place the filet cube in the centre and wrap the prosciutto around it. Wrap well with the plastic, making sure it is tight and held together. Chill in the freezer for 10-15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Cut the puff pastry into strips the width of the filet packages. Unwrap the filet and place on a strip of puff pastry and bring together. Use another piece of puff pastry, placed the opposite way and bring together to encase the beef. Use a bit of water to stick pastry together.
Place wellingtons seam side down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Brush with the egg yolk wash. Using the back of a knife, lightly score in a leaf pattern and sprinkle with a bit of coarse salt.
Bake the wellingtons for 10 minutes, then rotate the pan and turn up the heat to 450°. Bake for another 10 minutes or until golden and puffy. Let rest and enjoy!
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