Thursday, June 18, 2015

Individual Beef Wellingtons OMG!!

Every year at Holiday time my Mother-in-Law sends us a shipment of dry aged beef tenderloins, every year I make them into these beauties, its a well loved family tradition. I know Beef Wellington can be rather intimidating but honestly its so very EASY! 


1 lb. Fresh button mushroom chopped
1/2 C. finely chopped onion or shallots
1.tsp. salt
1/2 tsp.ground pepper
1/2 C. Dry Sherry or dry white wine
1/4 C. Butter
1/4 C. Chopped Parsley
6 1oz. slices of Pate' (Goose, Duck or Pork)
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
6 8oz Beef Tenderloin Filets
1 Pkg. frozen Puff Pastry
1 egg mixed with 1 tsp. water for egg wash
Dijon Mustard


Preheat Oven to 450 degrees

1. In a large skillet combine mushrooms, spices, onion, dry sherry, butter and parsley, cook until liquid is absorbs and it resembles a thick paste. Allow to cool. 

2.  Heat oil and heavy pan and brown both sides of filets, 1 minute each side for rare. Transfer to plate and allow to cool completely.

3. Roll out puff pastry and cut into 6 equal squares.

4.  Spread dijon mustard to taste on all filets, top with mushroom mixture then a slice of pate'.

5.  Place each filet mushroom mixture down on the puff pastry, wrap and seal with egg wash then brush with egg for a golden appearance.  Don't try and flip the meat over, just place the pastry on top and and then gently flip over and seal. 

6.  Place each wellington seam side down on prepared baking sheet, I use parchment paper. 

7.  Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until thermometer reads 140 for medium rare.

8.  Remove from oven and allow to set for 10 minutes before serving.

***NOTE***  You can choose to eliminate the Pate' or Dijon Mustard, it is not necessary for this to be AMAZING...Personally I can do without the Pate' but the one time I forgot the Dijon I found the Wellingtons to be bland.

Purple Asparagus!!!

Found this at our local Safeway! When cooked it changes to green! DELISH

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Sweet Soft "Avanti's" Style Bread!

I was born and raised in the community of Normal, Illinois! It was a GREAT place to grow up, not too big not too small, 2.5 hours to Chicago and home of Avanti's Restaurant!! If you grew up in Central Illinois you for SURE know about Avanti's and their famous bread. :-) I live on the West Coast now but still have a yearning for that sweet soft bread, this recipe is dead on and will fool even the most diehard Avanti's bread fan.  Its a lot of work but very worth it.

This recipe yields 6 loaves, I typically get 9 out of it but as you can see my loaves are a tad smaller.

2 pkg. Active Dry Yeast
3 cups water
3 Tbsp. oil
3 Eggs
1 tsp. salt
1 1/4 C. sugar (its sweet)
10-11 cups ***gulp*** flour! Thats a lot of flour


  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water; add remaining ingredients& knead for approximately 10 minutes, or until dough is smooth& elastic.
  2. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning once to bring greased side up.
  3. Cover with a cloth& let rise in a warm, draft-free spot until dough has doubled in bulk (1 1/2 to 2 hours).
  4. After first rising, punch dough down in bowl& turn over; let rise again until double (30-45 minutes).
  5. Cut dough into 5 to 6 portions, each about the size of a grapefruit.
  6. Let rise, covered for 10 minutes.
  7. Flatten dough, pressing out all the air, and form into long loaves, about 12" long.
  8. Place loaves on greased& floured cookie sheets; cover& let rise again (50-60 minutes).
  9. Preheat oven to 350F.
  10. Bake loaves for 20-25 minutes, until tops are golden brown& loaves sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.

Iron Skillet Pizza

We moved into our new home 2 months ago now and I am now the proud owner of a beautiful Electrolux Gas Range! I have started to make my pizza's in a iron skillet...crispy and delicious.  Oh the adventures I have yet to experience!