I’ve some more history for you from my friend Inka Piegsa-Quischotte. Inka is back in her home in Turkey after spending 3 or 4 months in the U.S.
Like the Chicken Margeno, Beef Wellington is connected to war and battles. Arthur Wellesley was made Duke of Wellington after he defeated Napoleon in the battle of Waterloo in 1815.
The Duke was very fond of a particular kind of shiny, brown military boots which came to be known as Wellington boots. He was, however, quite indifferent to culinary delights, apparently to the extent that several of his chefs quit because they thought their art and services were wasted on the military leader.
The triumph at Waterloo did call for a celebration and part of it was a dinner the Duke hosted. His chefs prepared the special dish which is a whole filet of beef, seared, then topped with foie gras and a minced mixture of mushrooms, wrapped in puff pastry and finished in the oven.
In honor of Wellington and because the finished product looked like a shiny, brown boot, they named it Filet Wellington. It’s unknown though, if the Duke enjoyed it or if he acquired a more refined culinary appetite after he sampled it.
Thank you Inka. We all appreciate the history behind a favorite of many.
TIP: When I used to make this dish, I used layers of puff pastry with butter in between. Now, I use one layer or crescent roll dough.
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