Last night, we had our first “Culinary Challenge” (I renamed it from “The Countries Game“). As a reminder, M and I wrote down 12 dishes or types of cuisine. We’ll pick one out of a jar each week and have an evening themed around our selection. First up was one of M’s challenges: British food! To set the mood, I created a Pandora station from the artist Olly Murs. I actually really liked his music, it was pretty pop-y and upbeat. M later switched over to the Beatles for dinner.
My intention was to have M bartend and make us some Pimms Cups. When I ran out to grab a few last minute ingredients, I quickly skimmed Chow’s recipe for a Pimm’s Cup and thought that the only thing I needed to grab was an English cucumber. I skimmed a little too fast and didn’t realize when I read “Pimm’s No 1. is a gin-based potion” did not mean I could substitute gin for Pimms No. 1. So, I had a gin and tonic with muddled cucumber and lemon and M had a bourbon cocktail. Oh well!
For dinner, I sauteed spinach (a little healthier than the traditional creamed spinach) and some roasted Trader Joe’s teeny tiny potatoes. I wanted to serve an “English Tart” for dessert, but couldn’t find a small fruit tart at the store and I didn’t have time to make one. Our main dish was Beef Wellington. This is definitely something I’ll keep in my back pocket for dinner parties in the future.
To start, heat a skillet over high. Generously season individually cut filets (sirloin or mignon) with salt and pepper. Sear on all sides until nicely browned. Once browned, remove to a plate and let cool.
Meanwhile, food process one package of mushrooms in a food processor. I used plain white mushrooms since that was what was on sale. Sauté the chopped mushrooms in a skillet until they’ve released most of their liquid. Let these cool also.
On a piece of plastic wrap, lay out two or three strips of prosciutto. They should be wide and long enough to wrap around your filet. Spread the cooled mushroom over the prosciutto, and cover with mustard. Center your filet on the plastic wrap.
Fold the ends of plastic wrap over the filet and roll the filet to completely encompass it. You want to form a tight ball. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Remove the wrapped filets from the fridge. Cut one sheet of puff pastry in half horizontally. Remove the plastic wrap from the filet and place the filet in the center of the puff pastry. Wrap the filet in puff pastry using the scrambled yolk of a egg to adhere the pastry to itself. Brush with egg and cut three slits in the top. Place in a preheated 400 degree oven for approximately 25 minutes or until your steak is cooked through.
It was a fun night and we’re excited to continue our theme nights for the next few weeks. Next up: Mediterranean! The wheels are already spinning.
Oh, and for anyone keeping track: M’s Red Bull: 0 Gym: 4. I did pilates yesterday to give myself a break and holy cow are my abs sore today!
- 2 Filet mignon or sirloin steaks, cut into 8 oz. portions
- 8 oz. mushrooms
- 4 slices of prosciutto
- 4 tablespoons whole grain dijon mustard
- 1 sheet of puff pastry, defrosted
- 1 egg yolk, scrambled
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Generously season steaks with salt and pepper. In a saute pan, sear steaks on each side until dark brown. Remove from pan and let cool. Wipe out saute pan.
- Chop mushrooms in a food processor until pureed. Add mushrooms to saute pan and cook until the mushrooms have released most of their liquid and are a dark brown. Remove from the pan and let cook.
- Lay two sheets of plastic wrap on your counter. Lay two slices of prosciutto on each sheet. Spread mushroom over the prosciutto. Top with whole grain mustard.
- Place the filets in the center of the prosciutto and roll tightly to create a ball. Place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
- Cut your sheet of puff pastry in half. Unwrap the filet from the plastic wrap and center it on the puff pastry. Brush pastry with scrambled egg yolk and fold edges over to completely cover.
- Place pastry, seam side down, on a baking sheet. Brush top of pastry with remain egg. Cut slits in the top of the pastry.
- Place baking sheet in oven and cook for 25 minutes or until steaks reach desired internal temperature.