What Cut Of Beef Do You Use For Beef Wellington?

Beef Wellington is a classic dish that has been enjoyed for centuries. It’s a decadent meal that is perfect for special occasions, and it’s sure to impress your guests.

But what cut of beef should you use for this delicious dish?

The answer is simple: beef tenderloin.

This cut of meat is known for its tenderness and juiciness, making it the perfect choice for Beef Wellington. In this article, we’ll explore why beef tenderloin is the best cut of meat for this dish and how to prepare it to perfection.

So, let’s dive in and discover the secrets to making the perfect Beef Wellington!

What Cut Of Beef Do You Use For Beef Wellington?

As mentioned earlier, the recommended cut of beef for Beef Wellington is beef tenderloin. This cut of meat comes from the loin of the cow and is located near the spine. It’s a long, cylindrical muscle that doesn’t get much exercise, making it incredibly tender.

Beef tenderloin is also known for its mild flavor and lean texture, making it the perfect canvas for the rich and flavorful ingredients that make up Beef Wellington. The tenderloin is usually trimmed of any excess fat and then seared to create a crust that locks in the juices and flavors.

Why Beef Tenderloin Is The Best Cut For Beef Wellington

There are several reasons why beef tenderloin is the best cut for Beef Wellington. Firstly, it is the most tender and juicy part of the cow, which is essential for a dish like Beef Wellington that requires a meaty burst of flavor without being chewy. This is because the tenderloin is not filled with muscle like other parts of the cow that move around more, resulting in a more tender texture.

Secondly, beef tenderloin has a robust beefy flavor, which is perfect for a dish like Beef Wellington that uses rich and flavorful ingredients like mushroom duxelles and prosciutto. The mild flavor of the tenderloin allows these ingredients to shine without overpowering the dish.

Lastly, beef tenderloin is large enough to sear and wrap in puff pastry, making it the perfect size for Beef Wellington. It also stays medium-rare when baked, ensuring that the meat remains tender and juicy.

What Makes Beef Tenderloin So Tender And Juicy

Beef tenderloin is known for its exceptional tenderness and juiciness, which makes it the perfect cut of meat for Beef Wellington. The tenderloin muscle, also known as the psoas major, is located along the rear portion of the spine and extends from the hip bone to the thirteenth rib.

What makes beef tenderloin so tender is that it’s a rarely-used muscle. Unlike other muscles in the cow’s body, the tenderloin doesn’t get much exercise, which results in a soft and supple texture. Additionally, the muscle is encased in a thick layer of crumbly fat known as kidney fat or suet, which contributes to its rich flavor.

When cooked properly, beef tenderloin is incredibly juicy. This is because the muscle fibers are tightly packed together, which helps to retain moisture during cooking. To ensure maximum juiciness, it’s important to sear the beef tenderloin before wrapping it in puff pastry for Beef Wellington. This creates a crust that helps to lock in the juices and flavors.

Choosing The Right Beef Tenderloin For Beef Wellington

When it comes to choosing the right beef tenderloin for Beef Wellington, there are a few key factors to consider. First and foremost, it’s important to select a high-quality cut of meat that will deliver the best flavor and texture. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

1. Head straight to the meat counter: When selecting your beef tenderloin, it’s best to go straight to the meat counter and have them cut the filet for you. This way, you can ensure that you’re getting exactly what you need and have more control over the selection process.

2. Choose the right grade: It’s important to select a high-quality grade of beef for your Beef Wellington. Talk to your butcher or meat counter attendant and see what they have on hand and what they would recommend. Opt for at least choice grade, but prime is best.

3. Cut from the right part of the tenderloin: Ask your butcher or meat counter attendant to cut the filet from the center of the tenderloin. This is the most tender part and it’s the most even in size which means both pieces will cook evenly. Ask them to cut the filet at least 1 3/4” thick. This also helps to avoid overcooking!

4. Buy right before you plan to cook: Purchase your beef tenderloin on the day you plan to assemble your Beef Wellington for optimal flavor and presentation. This ensures that your beef is fresh and hasn’t started to oxidize, which can affect the taste and texture.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to select a high-quality cut of beef tenderloin that will deliver the perfect flavor and texture for your Beef Wellington. Remember that while beef tenderloin may not have as much flavor as other cuts of beef, it makes up for it with its incredibly tender mouthfeel.

Preparing The Beef Tenderloin For Beef Wellington

To prepare the beef tenderloin for Beef Wellington, it’s important to tie the meat in four places to help it hold its cylindrical shape while cooking. This can be done using kitchen twine.

Once the tenderloin is tied, it should be seasoned generously with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add some olive oil and sear the tenderloin on each side for about 2-3 minutes until it gets a golden brown crust. This will help to create a flavorful crust on the outside of the meat.

After searing the tenderloin, remove it from the heat and set it aside to cool slightly. While the tenderloin is cooling, prepare the mushroom duxelles. This is done by adding mushrooms, garlic, and onion to a food processor and pulsing until finely chopped. The mixture is then sautéed in a skillet until most of the moisture has evaporated.

Once the mushroom duxelles has cooled slightly, spread it evenly over a sheet of plastic wrap that has been laid out on a cutting board. Rub some Dijon mustard over the surface of the tenderloin and then roll it up in the prosciutto and mushroom mixture, folding up the sides around the tenderloin as you roll. Wrap the plastic wrap tightly around the beef and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

After refrigerating, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll out some puff pastry on a lightly floured surface and place the tenderloin in the center. Brush an egg mixture around the tenderloin on the sheet and roll the tenderloin tightly in the pastry. Brush the remaining egg mixture on the outside of the pastry and cut slits in the top.

Bake until the pastry is golden and the beef registers to 120 degrees for medium rare, which should take about 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to prepare a delicious Beef Wellington that’s sure to impress your family and friends.

Wrapping The Beef Tenderloin In Puff Pastry For Beef Wellington

Once the beef tenderloin has been seared, it’s time to wrap it in puff pastry to create the iconic Beef Wellington. To do this, you’ll need to roll out a sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface until it’s large enough to wrap around the tenderloin.

Lay out a layer of thinly sliced prosciutto on top of the puff pastry, making sure to slightly overlap the edges. Spread a layer of mushroom duxelles on top of the prosciutto, leaving about an inch border around the edges.

Next, generously brush dijon mustard over the surface of the seared beef tenderloin before placing it on top of the mushroom duxelles. Carefully wrap the prosciutto and puff pastry around the tenderloin, folding up the sides around it as you roll. Make sure to wrap it tightly and seal any seams with a sharp knife.

Once wrapped, brush the outside of the puff pastry with beaten egg and cut slits in the top to allow steam to escape during baking. Bake in a preheated oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit until the pastry is golden brown and the beef registers at 120 degrees for medium rare.

After baking, let the Beef Wellington rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving with your choice of sides. Whether you’re making a classic Beef Wellington or a mini version for a party, wrapping the beef tenderloin in puff pastry is an essential step that will elevate your dish to new heights.

Cooking Tips For The Perfect Beef Wellington

Cooking the perfect Beef Wellington can be a daunting task, but with these tips, you’ll be able to impress your guests with a delicious and beautifully wrapped dish.

Firstly, it’s important to let the meat rest in between each stage of wrapping. This means that after searing the beef tenderloin, it’s best to let it sit in the refrigerator or freezer for a time to help firm up the tenderloin. This will make it easier to wrap in the pastry without damaging its shape.

When adding the pastry, try not to wrap it too tightly but don’t let any air in between. Layer it on smoothly and carefully without pressing too hard. It’s also important to brush your meat as well as the pastry with egg wash. This will make the top layer of the pastry stick to the meat and stop it from rising and leaving a gap.

Tie your beef tenderloin with kitchen twine before searing. This will help hold its shape while it’s being cooked. Try not to trim the pasty too close to the meat. Give the meat more pastry when wrapping it.

If you have leftover pastry, try using it for other recipes. Simply refrigerate it for another use like pie decorating. You can also try this recipe with different meats, Dijon mustard, and wild mushrooms for a more flavorful way of enjoying Beef Wellington.

Lastly, after removing the beef from the oven, let it rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing into it. This will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a more tender and flavorful dish.

By following these cooking tips, you’ll be able to create a perfect Beef Wellington that is sure to impress your guests and become a new family tradition for holiday dinners.