I have invited a few friends over for dinner in my studio apartment eons ago without any clue as to what to make. Well, I saw a french cookbook in a bookstore and on the cover was a luscious looking beef wrapped in pastry. Looked inside, so, this dish is called beef wellington, named after a duke who later became General Wellington. I said to myself, that's the dish I will make. Bought all the stuff I needed which is a zillion ingredients coupled with the fact that I never made a dough before. I only have two things on my side, my blind determination and that luscious looking photo on the book cover .
Followed the recipe to a "T" not to mention lack of sleep and the whole thing had turned into a 2 day marathon of preparation. The day of "the dinner" came. Everything was fine until I took the beef wellington out of the oven.......a disaster! (where is Julia when I needed her)!.....the dough was dull brown and grainy! Not the shiny golden almost brown dough as in the book cover....Deep breaths....what to do???... Checked all the ingredients again, and right on the kitchen counter was the bag of flour standing tall with the words, "Whole Wheat Flour".... I bought the wrong flour! Two hours before the guests arrive...think!!! I rushed to the supermarket to get every garnishings as in the photo, sliced the beef into several servings, hoping the guests will only notice the beautiful greenery surrounding the beef and the wonderfully cooked pinkish filet mignon. Either that or get the guests drunk first......
Ding! Dong!, goes the doorbell, maybe I will just hide in the closet with "general wellington" under my arm. I hesitantly opened the door, come in, come in..kiss...kiss...pray...pray.. and one guest commented, "how rustic",.... and without batting an eyelash, I replied, "yes a rustic beef wellington". (Whatever "rustic" means at that time)... There is God after alll!!! So now, my beef wellington has come a long way since my first attempt. This dish has now become my signature main course, served only on special occasion. Make it yours..
|Beef Wellington - a filet mignon wrapped in|
a flaky pastry crust.
"You've come a long way indeed.."