• 1 whole beef fillet steak (3 to 3 1/2 lb), trimmed of fat and
  • sinews
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper, or to taste
  • 2 Tbs. Madeira wine
  • For the mushroom sauce:
  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in warm
  • water to cover for 30 minutes
  • 1 ounce dried porcini or morel mushrooms, soaked in warm
  • water to cover for 30 minutes
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 8 fresh oyster mushrooms, brushed clean and
  • tough stems removed sliced
  • 6 ounces fresh button mushrooms, brushed clean and
  • sliced
  • cup Madeira wine
  • Salt and ground pepper to taste
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 4 shallots, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. fresh tarragon, chopped
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • Fresh watercress sprigs


1. Preheat an oven to 500°F. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet. Rub the beef fillet with the tarragon and pepper. Fold the thin tail of meat under to make an evenly thick roast. Tie the meat with kitchen string at regular intervals 2 to 3 inches apart. Place the meat on the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle the Madeira over the beef and let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes before roasting.
2. Place the fillet in the oven. Immediately reduce the heat to 450°F and roast the meat for 25 minutes for rare, or 30 minutes for medium-rare. Meanwhile, prepare several thicknesses of newspaper and top with a sheet of parchment paper. When the beef is ready, transfer it to the parchment and roll it up in the paper, enclosing completely. Then roll the newspapers around it. Let rest for 20 to 25 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce: Squeeze the water from the rehydrated mushrooms. Remove and discard any tough stems and thinly slice the tops. In a large sauté pan over high heat, warm enough of the olive oil to form a film on the pan bottom. Working in batches, sauté each variety of dried and fresh mushroom separately, shaking the pan constantly, until they no longer give off any moisture, 4 to 5 minutes for each batch. Add a splash of Madeira to each batch and cook for about 1 minute longer. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl.
4. Return the sauté pan to medium heat and melt the butter. Add the shallots and a little oil if necessary to prevent scorching, and sauté until soft, about 7 minutes. Season with the tarragon and pepper. Add the remaining Madeira (there should be about 3 Tbs.) and bring to a boil. Cook for 3 minutes. Return the mushrooms and their juices to the pan, add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the liquid is reduced by one-half, about 20 minutes. Adjust the seasonings. Transfer to a warmed sauceboat.
5. To serve, unwrap the beef, snip the strings and cut across the grain into slices. Arrange on a warmed platter, spoon on a bit of the sauce and garnish with watercress. Pass the remaining sauce at the table. Serves 8 to 10



MacGourmet downloadTarragon Beef Fillet w/Madeira and Mushroom Sauce. To import, drag image to your MacGourmet recipe box.


Adapted from Williams-Sonoma


8 servings