This Come Dine With Me classic with a twist comes courtesy of Rich being given free rein to request whatever his heart desired for a celebratory Father's Day meal. Apparently his heart desired a starter of snails in garlic butter followed by lamb Wellington with daphinoise potatoes and then a Key lime pie: all the essentials for a heart attack. I made it anyway.
I bought my escargot at Borough market for not very much money, but was disappointed not to be able to find one of those special stone dishes to grill them in. I just used a ramekin dish instead and grilled them simply with a homemade garlic and parsley butter - they were very good.
For the Wellington I cheated (as I always do) by buying myself some handy Jus-Roll puff pastry. Ain't nobody got time for that. Obviously the traditional filling for a beef Wellington is mushroom duxelles; I contemplated trying something different but you really really can't get better than the duxelles, which is a mixture of sauteed wild mushrooms, thyme, parsley and shallot coarsely blended with a dash of cream to get the consistency right. I poshed mine up with some truffle oil too. Onto the lamb. I got hold of some lamb loins in Waitrose, but they were not easy to find. I browned them off in a pan with some butter and smoked garlic and then left them to cool and rest for a good few hours - you don't want liquid seeping into your pastry and causing a soggy bottom. Once cool, smear sparingly with french mustard to help the duxelles mixture to stick. Having rolled out two rectangles of pastry, one slightly bigger than the other, place the mustardy lamb in the middle of the smallest pastry. Cover the lamb with the duxelles and then carefully place the larger pastry sheet over to top to encase the whole thing. Stick it to the bottom pastry with egg - I then crimp mine roughly with my fingers to really make sure the whole thing stays together as leakage is a disaster. Brush the top of the pastry with the egg for a golden colour. I refrigerated this for an hour or so as everyone tells you to, but not sure why.
Meanwhile, I made a dauphinoise by very thinly slicing potato and layering in a ovenproof dish with garlic infused single cream. Double cream makes for a much more satisying and authentic dauphinoise but I made the mistake of reading the calorie content and went for single ( if you do the same then be sure to cook the dauphinoise slowly in a low oven or your cream will split, yuck). Once the dauphinoise was looking almost ready I put a lid on it to stop it browning too much, turned the oven up and popped the Wellington in. We like ours rare, so they only took about 20 minutes. I served it with broccoli and the remainder of the duxelles mixted with even more cream and the juices from the lamb pan to make a little sauce.
Key Lime pies came from GU, which is probably best.