Wellingtons in Auckland
Nautilus Estate Pinot Noir 2011 was served at a recent masterclass organised by Cuisine magazine.
The title of the masterclass was “Stress-free entertaining with Gareth Stewart” and was attended by about 160 avid foodies.
Nautilus Pinot Noir was delicious partnered with Gareth’s Venison Wellingtons and there were many favourable comments on this particular match. Both the dish and the wine had a subtle combination of sweet and spicy flavours and an elegance which highlighted the beautiful cut of rare venison. Nothing was overblown or overdone. Here is his recipe.
Gareth Stewart’s venison wellington
500g button mushrooms 1 clove garlic crushed 25g butter 2 tablespoons chopped chives 1 tablespoon truffle paste 6 x 170g-180g portions Neat Meat venison loin 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard 3 large leaves savoy cabbage, stems removed 600g puff pastry
Pulse the mushrooms in a food processor. Fry the garlic gently with the butter in a small saucepan over a low heat until soft. Add the mushroom mix (duxelles) and continue to cook until any moisture has evaporated (around 5 minutes). Put the duxelles in a bowl, cool and add the chives and truffle paste then season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Season the venison with salt and pepper. Heat a wide frying pan with the oil then, over a high heat, brown the meat on all sides. Remove and cool. Use a pastry brush to cover each loin liberally with mustard. Blanch the cabbage leaves for 2 minutes in salted boiling water, cool in an iced-water bath then pat dry. Use a meat hammer to flatten slightly and squash the veins.
For the crepes:
1/2 cup flour 1/2 cup eggs, plus extra beaten egg yolk for brushing 3/4 cup milk 1/2 tablespoon chopped parsley 1/2 tablespoon chopped chervil 1/2 tablespoon chopped tarragon 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
Whist the flour and eggs together in a bowl. Once you have a paste, start to add in the milk, ensuring there are no lumps. Add the herbs and a pinch of salt.
Fry the crepes in the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat (you will need 3 large crepes for 6 portions), turning when bubbles appear on the surface. Cut the crepes into strips to match the width of your venison portions.
Cover each strip with half a cabbage leaf and spread the duxelles over. Wrap each mustard-covered loin in cabbage and crepe, making sure the overlap is no bigger than 1cm. Cover firmly with plastic wrap to allow the Wellingtons to begin to set and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180’C. Divide the pastry into 6, roll out 6 rectangles and brush with egg yolk. Uncover the venison, put a portion at the top of each rectangle and wrap in pastry, using the palms of your hand to squash down the ends.
Crimp with a fork and trim. Score the Wellingtons for at least 20 minutes before baking for 24 minutes until the pastry turns golden. Trim off the edges and rest for just 1 minute then cut each Wellington in half.
Serve with a meat jus and garnish with grilled asparagus and creamy potato puree… and off course a big glass of Nautilus Pinot Noir!