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Author Notes: This recipe ties together my background (Japanese) with my husband’s (English/European). Traditional beef wellington is a very unique recipe on its own, with a prime cut of beef cooked in pastry dough. It embodies the “meat and potatoes” comfort food my husband loves but takes it to another level and is historically reserved for special occasions. By splurging on a wagyu tenderloin and mixing in a few other twists, our beef wellington takes me back to my roots as well. The presentation and taste is enhanced with the shiitake mushrooms, sesame oil, and cherry sauce utilizing dried cherries. It has become a tradition in our family to make this recipe ever since we moved away from our families to Texas. More than any other, this meal makes us feel more at home and connected to our heritage during the holidays. —sachi
- 1 pound beef tenderloin (wagyu)
- 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 sprig fresh marjoram
- 12 thin slices of Serrano ham
- 1/2 cup Beer of choice (used Japanese brand)
- 1 pound puff pastry
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon water
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 pinch pepper
- Sear beef tenderloin filet on stove top on all sides for 1 minute. Place on roast pan and rub olive oil and season with pepper. Heat oven to 425F. Roast for 15 min (medium rare). Store in refrigerator until needed again.
- Finely chop shiitake mushrooms and dried cherries. Heat 2 tbsp. of olive oil and 1 tsp of sesame oil in a large pan and add the mushrooms and dried cherries with 1 sprig of fresh marjoram. Cook until soft. Season with salt and pepper. Next add beer and cook until all of the beer is absorbed. Remove sprig of marjoram.
- Lay 6 slices of Serrano ham where they perfectly line up (may need to overlap) and in the center spread half of the mushroom mix. Sit the fillet on it and add the rest of the mushrooms on top of the filet. Roll the Serrano ham over the filet and use 4-6 slices to cover sides and overlap so that filet is completely covered. Chill the fillet.
- Place ½ of 1lb puff pastry on a non-stick baking sheet. Place fillet on center of pastry. Beat egg yolks with 1 tsp water and brush the pastries’ edges and on all sides of the wrapped fillet. Use the other ½ lb. puff pastry to cover the fillet and press on top and sides to ensure full coverage. Trim to create a 1 inch rim around fillet. Seal the rim with fingers. Cover the pastry with more egg yolk. On the top draw long diagonal lines. Chill in refrigerator for 1 hour.
- Heat oven to 400F and cook for 20-25 minutes (medium rare). Allow to stand for 10 minutes before cutting.
Cherry Beer Sauce
- 1 cup finely diced shallots
- 1/2 cup diced dried cherries (no sugar added)
- 2 tablespoons sushi vinegar
- 1 1/4 cups prefered beer (Japanese brand used)
- 1 1/4 cups chicken stock (preferably homemade)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 pinch pepper
- Sauté shallots in a medium saucepan until lightly browned. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add cherries to shallot mix and cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour sushi vinegar and cook until evaporated down to a syrup.
- Pour (Japanese brand) and cook until reduced by 2/3rds.
- Pour chicken stock (used homemade) and bring to a boil. Reduce by 2/3rds again. Add butter and whisk into sauce.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Dried Fruit