This fancy looking Wellington was stuffed with sweet caramelized mushroom and onion, Asparagus and Brie cheese. A perfect vegetarian option for a holiday dinner that will sure dazzle your guest. It’s flaky, juicy and just plain delicious.
How do you feel about making a Wellington? Does is scare you, intimidate you or excite you? Or maybe you don’t have a thing for it? I was more on the intimidated feeling when I first thought of making Wellington, but before we go deep on how to make it, let’s first define what Wellington is.
What is Wellington Dish?
Wellington is traditionally is chunk of beef wrapped in layers of ham, mushroom paste and puff pastry. It’s like a huge log that looks like a bread but with nice meaty savory filling. Although beef is the traditional Wellington, there are also now variations of Chicken Wellington, Mmeatballs Wellington, Salmon Wellington, meat loaf and this vegetarian mushroom and cheese version.
Among all the other variations, I find the traditional steak chunk as the most difficult one to make, at least if you want to get the correct state of how you like the meat cook (well don, medium rare). The other versions do not have this challenge, there’s no such thing as well done or medium rare salmon, or meatballs or chicken, or vegetable which makes them easier to make. In my case, I like my meat always well done which may not look as beautiful and appealing when sliced, but I give more weight to taste and presentation comes second only. If I can get both world, that would be my ideal case but for beef wellington, I am making an exception.
A Vegetarian Wellington
Why not? Although frankly when I first saw it, it does look like just a stuffed puff pastry dish, because that’s what actually it is. It doesn’t have a layers of ham or mushroom paste, the mushroom itself is the filling. The ham in a Wellington plays an important role, it keeps the puff pastry from getting soggy as it bakes. This is because it became an extra layer to protect the puff pastry from the moisture coming from the mushroom paste. In this vegetarian version, we don’t have that meat layers, instead I had it replaced with fresh Asparagus. The Asparagus became the barrier between the mushroom and puff pastry. Besides, I think mushroom, cheese and asparagus as great together. It will still work without the Asparagus, just make sure to have it really reduced and without any sauce when you put it inside the puff pastry.
As I have said earlier, this is a very simple process. Make the mushroom filling, fill the puff pastry with filling, bake and enjoy! Sounds simple, yeah? Because it is. Let’s get started!
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 small Onion – sliced
- 1.5 lb Mushroom (I used a combination of white and Portobello mushroom)
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 Pepper
- 1 tbsp Brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp Chili flakes
- 1/2 Italian Seasoning
- 12 pieces Asparagus (more or less depending on the size of the Asparagus)
- 1 Roll Puff Pastry
- 155g Brie Cheese (more or less)
- 75g Fresh Mozzarella Cheese (more or less)
- Egg wash ( 1 beaten egg + 1 tsp water)
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Prepare the Mushroom Filling: Place a large frying pan over a low to medium-low heat. Add olive oil followed by onion and reduce heat to low. Cook about 1-2 minutes until the onion is no longer translucent. Add mushroom, salt pepper, Italian seasoning, sugar and chili flakes. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 25 – 28 minutes, or until water is reduced and the mixture is almost dry. Remove from the heat, and drain on paper towel top side up as they will release a lot of liquid as they cool. Transfer the mixture in the refrigerator and cool completely. This step can be done ahead of time, store in a covered container and leave in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Prepare the Asparagus: Wash and trim the hard end of Asparagus. Set aside.
- Assemble: Unroll thawed Puff Pastry (if using store-bought) on the working surface. Leave the parchment paper underneath the Puff Pastry. Use a rolling pin to slightly push it to make it 11 x 11-inch. Brush the sides with egg wash. Arrange Asparagus in the center of the Puff Pastry, making sure to leave extra border allowance at the edge of the pastry. Arrange cheese on top of Asparagus, followed by caramelized mushroom and onion and finish off with a final layer of cheese on top.
- Roll: Very carefully roll the pastry over the top of the mushroom mixture until you have a log. Press down to seal the edges. Roll over the log so that the seam is facing the bottom.
- Brush with Egg wash: Brush top and sides of wellington with egg wash. Place the pastry in the freezer for at least 30 minutes before baking.
- Bake: Transfer the pastry on the baking sheet. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, or until golden and flaky. Rotate the pan midway through baking. Use a baking sheet with high rim to avoid the oil/butter from dripping. Once done, immediately remove from the oven to avoid getting soaked with oil/butter. Do NOT leave in the pan.
Notes: The mushroom wellington is best eaten as soon as it comes out of the oven as the pastry will start to soften as the mushrooms release their juices as they cool.
Serve with a nice smooth and creamy mashed potato. Check out my video.
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