For Christmas this year, I didn’t ask Santa for a new sweater, tie or even my two front teeth. I just wanted a richly satisfying holiday dinner that wouldn’t make me gain weight.
One of my solutions was a down-sized beef Wellington. Traditionally, this dish is a fillet of beef covered with pate, a sauteed mushroom mixture known as duxelles, then enveloped in buttery puff pastry and baked in the oven. Total heart attack material.
Beef Wellington is a dish with a story. It was named for the Duke of Wellington, a national hero for defeating Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815. The Duke loved a certain dish prepared from beef, mushrooms, truffles, Madeira wine and pate cooked in pastry. It later was renamed in his honor.
So I decided to create a version that would fit into today’s healthy, lose-weight lifestyle. It took many attempts to get it right, but it was worth it. The result will impress you. So will the numbers. Traditional beef Wellington has 57 grams of fat and 744 calories per serving. My version has just 11 grams of fat and 328 calories.
My recipe is a nice alternative to the traditional prime rib that is served for many holiday dinners. The tenderloin is a lean cut of beef, so you can save calories and fat right there. I also figured out how to use a low-fat pancake mix as a crust instead of fat-laden puff pastry.
I used arrowroot to thicken the mushroom sauce, so there’s no fat involved, but plenty of high-intensity flavor, especially with the addition of jerky. Spinach, which is full of good-for-you nutrients, rests just under the pastry for a decadent look and taste. You can eat and enjoy this dish, guilt-free, and still feel like you’re eating something holiday-worthy.
Be sure to specify a center-cut tenderloin at the meat counter so you don’t get a roast that contains several pieces of tenderloin pressed together.