There is nothing more Christmassy than a beef wellington. Unlike a traditional wellington cooked on the stove-top and then in the oven, this one is going to be grilled!
- 2-pound cut of Chateaubriand
- Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 6 ounces Portobello mushrooms
- 6 ounces shiitake mushrooms
- 6 oyster mushrooms
- 8 slices prosciutto
- 1 finely minced shallot
- Pinch of minced thyme
- English yellow mustard
- 3 eggs
- 1 sheet puff pastry
- White flour
Q: What is Chateaubriand, and where can I get it?
A: Chateaubriand (pronounced something like “shatto-bree-OH”) is a steak cut from the thickest part of a beef tenderloin. It is a custom cut, which you won’t find in a regular supermarket. Any butcher should know what you are asking for and be able to cut it for you. However, it may take some time to get it, so plan ahead.
Start off by rubbing the Chateaubriand with extra virgin olive oil. Ensure that all sides and ends are coated evenly. Sprinkle a decent amount of kosher salt onto the beef.
Tip: Rolling the beef on the prep board will pick up all the extra seasoning.
With a 600-degree F grill and a clean grill grate, sear the beef on all sides. The goal is to sear the meat, not to cook it through. The sear should be approximately 90 seconds on each side.
Once seared, wrap the beef in plastic wrap and refrigerate. This will eliminate any carryover cooking.
While the beef is cooling, place a skillet on the stove-top over medium heat and let it get hot. Toss the mushrooms and the shallot into a food processor and pulse until they are finely ground. Leaving the pan dry—no oil or butter—add the mushroom mixture, then season it with salt, pepper, and a pinch of dried thyme. Stir occasionally. The dry pan will sweat out all the mushrooms’ water content. With the water sweated out of the mushrooms, pour the mushrooms into a sieve, press them with a spatula to remove all the excess water, and set them aside to cool.
Fact: Mushrooms have an extremely high water content; some types are made up of nearly 90% water.
Lay out a sheet of plastic wrap onto the counter. On the plastic wrap, lay out the prosciutto in a uniform layer. Spread the mushroom mixture thinly on top, again in as complete a layer as possible.
Remove the beef from the refrigerator and unwrap it. Brush on a layer of yellow mustard and place the beef on the center of the prosciutto and mushrooms. Use the plastic wrap to roll the prosciutto around the beef. Roll the beef tightly in the plastic wrap and twist the ends like a tootsie roll.
Tuck the ends under to hold them and set the beef aside while the Kamado grill pre-heats.
Tip: Keeping the roll as tight as possible will aid in keeping a round shape.
Tip: If time is an issue, everything up to this point can be done the day before. However, be sure to let the beef come to room temperature before rolling it in the pastry; otherwise you may end up with burnt pastry.
Set up your Kamado cooker with the heat deflector in and the grilling grate on top. Preheat the cooker to 400 degrees F. Let the cooker preheat until there is no smoke. You do not want to bake this expensive dinner with white smoke pouring out.
While the grill is preheating, crack the eggs and separate the yolks for an egg wash. Using a small whisk or fork, beat the yolks until they are combined.
Tip: Cracking an egg on a flat surface, rather than the rim of a bowl, will ensure that you do not break the yolk.
Dust the countertop with flour and unfold the thawed puff pastry. Thin out the puff pastry with a floured rolling pin. Brush all four edges of the pastry with the egg wash. The egg wash will hold the pastry together. Place the beef in the center of the pastry and roll the pastry around it. You will need to trim the pastry corners on the ends of the roll to get a nice presentation. Brush the pastry with the egg wash covering it completely. Sprinkle the top of the pastry with kosher salt.
Tip: Use the back of a knife to score the pastry in a pattern. This will really enhance the presentation of the wellington.
Tip: Allow the beef to come up to room temperature before wrapping.
Place the wellington onto a greased pan, and place the pan directly on the grill grate. I used a Thermoworks Chef Alarm wired thermometer to monitor the internal temperature of the beef. Bake the wellington for approximately 25 minutes.
Halfway through the baking phase, rotate the pan 180 degrees to ensure the wellington cooks evenly. This will also allow you a look at the pastry.
Tip: If the pastry is browning quicker than the beef is cooking, cover it with aluminum foil.
Once the beef is cooked to your desired temperature (I prefer it on the rare side), remove it from the grill, and let it rest for 10 minutes. Slice it thick and enjoy!
This recipe first appeared in Issue 42 of StoryQue magazine.