In this recipe, chef Serge Dansereau uses mushroom instead of the traditional chicken liver pate to encase the beef before wrapping in puff pastry. A classic and impressive dinner party dish.
- 800 g beef fillet (centre-cut for even thickness)
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 80 ml (⅓ cup) olive oil
- 100 g butter
- 500 g field mushrooms, stems removed, peeled and roughly chopped
- 4 French shallots, finely chopped
- 1 tsp thyme leaves (or a combination of flat leaf parsley and chives)
- 12 slices prosciutto
- puff pastry
- 2 egg yolks, well beaten with a pinch of sea salt
Red wine sauce
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 French shallots, finely chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- ½ tsp white peppercorns, crushed
- ½ tsp black peppercorns, crushed
- 1 field mushroom, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 500 ml (2 cups) red wine
- 500 ml (2 cups) beef stock
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 2 rosemary sprigs
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Cooling time 15 minutes
Chilling time 1 hour 10 minutes
Dry the beef fillet with paper towel then season well with salt and pepper. Heat half the oil and a tablespoon of the butter in a large frying pan over high heat. Add the beef and sear well on all sides, cooking for around 5 minutes in total. Remove to a plate and allow to cool.
Place the mushrooms in a food processor and process until very finely chopped. Heat the remaining oil and butter in the frying pan over high heat. Add the shallots and sweat for 1 minute, then add the mushrooms and cook for 15 minutes, or until all the liquid has evaporated from the mushrooms and the mixture is very dry. Remove from the heat, season to taste, and add the thyme. Leave to cool for 15 minutes.
Lay a large sheet of plastic wrap on a work surface. In the middle arrange the prosciutto slices lengthwise, with each slice slightly overlapping. Spread the mushroom mixture over the prosciutto. Lay the beef on top of the mushrooms and wrap the prosciutto and mushrooms around the beef, enclosing everything in the plastic. Secure tightly and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour to firm up.
While the beef is chilling you can make the sauce. Heat the oil in a saucepan over high heat. Add the shallots and onion and saute for 5 minutes or until caramelised. Add the pepper, mushroom and garlic and saute for another 2 minutes. Add half the wine and boil until nearly dry. Pour in the remaining wine and boil again, this time until reduced by three-quarters. Add the stock and bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until reduced by half (skim the sauce regularly to remove any impurities). Strain the sauce through a fine sieve into a smaller saucepan and bring back to the boil, skimming again. Simmer for a final 10 minutes, until the sauce is glossy and has the consistency of pouring cream. Remove from the heat and add the thyme and rosemary sprigs, and set aside for 10 minutes to infuse. Strain to remove the herbs and keep the sauce warm until needed. (The sauce can be made up to 5 days in advance, stored in the refrigerator and reheated if desired.)
Preheat the oven to 220°C. Place the pastry on a lightly floured work surface and roll out to a rectangle large enough to wrap around the beef and about 3 mm thick. Remove the plastic from the prosciutto-wrapped beef and place in the centre of the pastry. Fold one side of the pastry over the beef and brush the edge with beaten egg. Roll the beef over, enclosing it in the pastry. Trim off any excess pastry from underneath the beef. Trim any excess pastry from the ends and tuck them under, pressing to seal. Place the parcel on a tray and brush the top with egg. Decorate the parcel with leaves cut from the pastry off-cuts, brushing these with egg also. Use a fork to draw decorative lines over the pastry. Chill the parcel in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
Place the beef in the oven and cook for 5-10 minutes, until the pastry is golden, then reduce the temperature to 140°C (open the door for a minute to help lower the heat). Cook for a further 20 minutes, which should give you nice, juicy, pink beef.
Rest the beef for 5 minutes, then place on a board and cut off the pastry ends. Cut the beef in half, then cut each piece in half again to give 4 thick slices. Serve on warmed plates with the red wine sauce.