Great British Baking Show: “The Beginnings” (Netflix), Season 5 (PBS) –A.K.A. The Great British Bake Off Series 3
Episode 5: Signature Challenge– Wellington
A basic wellington is some sort of filling wrapped in buttery, flaky puff pastry. A traditional wellington has a beef filling, and it can be wrapped in pate or parma ham to protect the juices and allow the pastry to cook through. I’ve never eaten a traditional beef wellington before, and I barely knew what it was until I watched the GBBO episode. I don’t have too much experience with cooking steaks and I didn’t want to go traditional, so I opted for something quite different! My husband suggested an Indian spiced one, almost like a giant meat samosa, so I went with that and it came out absolutely delicious! This recipe is definitely a keeper in my book.
So I used vegan wellington recipe from holy cow vegan as my base and then modified it pretty drastically to get it how I wanted. If you want to try a meatless wellington, I definitely recommend trying that recipe. The only things I kept from this recipe are the carrot, celery, lentils, onion, garlic, and flour. I added a load of spices and some ground beef and shitake mushrooms.
We can’t forget the puff pastry! So I started by making a rough puff pastry in the morning and let it refrigerate until I was ready to start making dinner. I used the same rough puff recipe as when I made my tarte tatin. It’s excellent and so much quicker than a traditional puff. I combined my flour, butter, and water to make the dough and let it rest. While the dough was resting I grated the butter and put it in the freezer to get it nice and cold. I rolled out my dough into a rectangle and put half the grated butter, then folded in thirds, like you would fold a letter to put into an envelope. Then I turned it 90°and rolled it out again repeating the same thing with the rest of the butter and folding in thirds. I turned it, rolled it out and folded it three more times. Then I wrapped it in siran wrap and put it in the fridge.
When I was ready to start making dinner, I started by prepping all my veggies. I chopped up my onion, celery, and carrot and peeled the garlic.
Then I got out a large skillet and put in some avocado oil. I put in my onion and minced garlic into the pan. I sauteed them until the onion was translucent. Then I added in my ground beef and browned it. After the beef was browned, I added in some salt, pepper, and the celery and carrots. After cooking that for a few minutes, I added in the mushrooms and all the spices. Then I cooked it for a another 5 minutes or so until the liquid was mostly cooked out. I added in the lentils last and mixed them in. I cooked it a tiny bit longer and then took it off the heat and mixed in the flour. I put it aside to cool for about 10 minutes.
After letting the filling cool, I took out the rough puff pastry and lightly floured my counter top. I cut the rough puff in half and rolled out the first half into a large rectangle. I put half my filling into the middle and smushed it into a loaf with my hands. Then I put each side of the pastry over the top and kind of smushed the seam together. Then I cut the top part of the ends off and folded the bottom layer of puff pastry over the top. Then I flipped it over and scored the top with my knife. I did the same thing for the next loaf.
P.S. You’ll see in the picture below, one wellington is a lot more photogenic than the other. For the one on the right, after I rolled out the pastry, I flipped it over, so the nice flat rolled out top would become the outside of my wellington. I forgot to do that for the other loaf, so my outside isn’t as smooth.
So here it is! My husband and I ate almost the whole first loaf for dinner last night. We had both had to have seconds, it was so good! If you want to take a whack at it, check out my recipe below.
Indian Inspired Beef Wellington
Rough Puff Pastry
Borrowed from Flavor Bender.
- 3 tbsp + 14 tbsp butter, grated and separated
- 3 c. all purpose flour
- 8-12 tbsp ice water
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped finely
- 1 large carrot, chopped finely
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2lb ground beef
- 10oz shitake mushooms, sliced
- 1 15oz can red lentils, drained
- 1 heaping tsp chili powder, more to taste
- 1 1/2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp tumeric
- 2 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1/4 c. flour
- avocado or olive oil
- salt and pepper
- almond milk
- In the morning, or the day before make the rough puff pastry. Start by grating butter. Separate it and put the large portion in the freezer to keep nice and cold. In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, and 3 tbsp butter. Smush together with hands until butter is combined in mixture. Then start adding water until mixture forms into a dough that is not tacky. If it is, you put too much water. Once the dough is a single ball, wrap in siran wrap and place in refrigerator to rest for about 10 minutes.
- After resting, place dough on a lightly floured surface and roll out to a large rectangle. You want the length to be at least double the width. Take out the butter and put 1/4 onto the middle portion of the dough. Fold the first third over the middle. Then put the next 1/4 of the grated butter on top of the folded portion. Then fold the last third over the butter.
- Turn the rectangle 90° so the long side is now facing you again. Roll out to a rectangle and repeat process with the rest of the butter. Turn the rectangle 90° again, then roll out, and fold into thirds. Do this two more times. Work quickly, and if butter starts melting, put in the fridge for a half hour or so to let it solidify. After completing all 5 turns, wrap in siran wrap and place in refrigerator. Let chill for at least 2 hours before using it.
- Prep all ingredients for filling. Take out a large skillet, add in onion and garlic. Saute until translucent, about 5 minutes on medium-low heat. Then add ground beef and let brown. After the beef is browned, add in celery and carrot and saute another couple of minutes. Then add mushrooms and let them cook a few minutes. Add in all spices and some salt and pepper to taste. You can add some more chili powder if you want a little heat. Add lentils last and cook a few more minutes until there’s not a lot of liquid in the pan. Take off heat, and mix in four until its incorporated. Let cool 10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Take out puff pastry and cut in half. Roll out to at least an 11×13″ rectangle. Make the sides a little thinner than the middle. Flip the pastry over so the good side is on the bottom. Put half the filling on the middle and form into a rectangular loaf. Put each side of the dough over the filling and smush seam together. Cut some of the extra dough off each end so there’s only one layer and fold them over the top. Flip over so the seam is on the bottom and score the top with a knife. Do the same thing with the other loaf.
- Put loaves on cookie sheet covered in parchment paper. Put 1 tsp oil and 2 tsp almond milk in a bowl and mix. Brush oil/milk mixture over the top of each loaf, then cook in oven for 30-40 minutes until loaves are a nice golden brown color.