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Welcome to delicious Destinations, a GourmetStation blog. Through the charater of T.Alexander and occasional real-life guests, our aim is to share with you light-hearted fun ideas about food, gift giving, entertaining and culture. At the same time we would love you hear from you. Please share your experiences from home or abroad.

Beef Wellington Christmas Dinner Delivered from GourmetStation


Posted: December 13, 2012
by: T.Alexander

Many thanks to Mark Vogel at www.foodreference.com for his detailed account of how beef Wellington came about. Below is an excerpt written by Mark describing the fall of Napoleon Bonaparte at Waterloo by British Field Marshall Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington, and the birth of beef Wellington. Enjoy the narrative. If you are seeking an authentic beef Wellington Christmas dinner delivered, consider GourmetStation….four delicious courses delivered in complimentary gift packaging ready to heat and serve in about 30 minutes.

Beef Wellington from GourmetStation

"It was Sunday June 18th 1815, about a mile south of the small village of Waterloo in what is now modern day Belgium. Approximately 190,000 men fought one of the most epic battles of the modern era. Napoleon Bonaparte had been defeated the year prior. Abdicating his throne he was exiled to the island of Elba. In March of 1815 he returned to Paris and reclaimed his crown for a period known as the “hundred days.” His previous enemies were determined to nip Napoleon redux in the bud. The seventh coalition, an amalgamation of numerous European countries and states amassed their armies. Gebhard von Blucher commanded the Prussian forces while Field Marshall Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, presided over a British army and its Anglo allies. It was not Napoleon’s finest hour. In fact, historians agree that he failed to display the tactical brilliance which highlighted his previous reign. When all was said and done nearly 50,000 men were dead or wounded, the French army was in tatters, and Napoleon was once again forced into exile, this time for the rest of his life.

Wellesley was awarded the title Duke of Wellington in 1814 after Napoleon’s first dethroning. After Waterloo came more accolades and advancement including the Prime Ministership. Even the culinary world sought to immortalize him with the classic dish that would bare his name: Beef Wellington.

Beef Wellington is a beef tenderloin encased in a pastry crust and cooked. Like so many classic recipes, where and when the dish was first created is a quagmire. France, England, Ireland, and even Africa have been sited as possible birthplaces. My vote goes to France. Wrapping meat in pastry was certainly not a novel idea in 1815. The French already had such a dish in their culinary repertoire known as “filet de boeuf en croûte.” Someone, somewhere merely rechristened it “beef Wellington” in honor of Wellesley.
Even the exact ingredients are up for debate. It appears that this recipe started off as nothing more than the beef wrapped in a simple dough, inevitably just flour and water. At some point puff pastry was substituted for the basic dough. Puff pastry is very labor-intensive. It involves distributing cold butter between layers of dough, then folding the dough over and rolling it out. This process is repeated numerous times until a multi-stratified dough of flour and butter is produced. When baked, the melting butter releases steam and “puffs” the pastry by separating the numerous flaky layers. Most home cooks eschew the drudgery of making puffed pastry from scratch and opt for the frozen, pre-made counterpart." By: Mark Vogel

Other Christmas dinners delivered from GourmetStation include a holiday turkey dinner, lamb dinners and fillet mignon steak dinner for two. Bon appétit!


Christmas dinners delivered from GourmetStation.

 


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