Saturday, May 22, 2010

Rosé veal with rosé sauce and tiny toasted flower buds

I love the soft, sweet flavour of veal. I love the gentle pinkness of rosé veal, the only kind of veal I can bring myself to eat.* From there it is all word association and day dreaming with me.

Given how perfect white wine sauce is with veal, it is only a short step to matching a dryish rosé. I’m not a wine snob (as evidenced by my choice of wine to cook with solely on the basis of whim and colour). Rosé veal with rosé wine sauce just sounds clever.

In my culinary fantasy-world I imagine a dish scattered with rose petals or perhaps preserved or jellied rosehips, sweet and sour and floral. I’m imagining Heston Blumenthal type presentation, with little petals cut out of veal scaloppine arranged like a flower on the plate. It’s twee and arty and probably has fennel pollen scattered on it.

Setting aside my rose coloured glasses I instead make something much simpler. In the real world dinner takes fifteen minutes to cook. It is light, easy and tasty. Tenderised veal scaloppine, lean and quick cooking. Browned on both sides in a very lightly oiled non stick pan and then removed. I deglaze the pan with a glass of rosé. Boiled, reduced. Add the veal back in. I could strain it, but seriously, I am firmly back in the real world. Simmer, whilst steaming some vegetables. Five minutes later, it’s ready. Tip onto a plate – rosé veal with rosé sauce. Clever, quick, delicious.

Except: I can’t resist. In the wiped out pan, I heat some olive oil to sizzling. And I scatter in some little caper buds, preserved in white wine vinegar. They start to pop and crackle, brown and turn a little crispy. Little tiny toasted flower buds, scattered over the top. Not roses, but a savoury-sour floral flavour addition, pretty and nearly as clever.

* I know that, like my reticence regarding rabbit, many people struggle with the idea of eating veal.
There is veal and there is veal. Rosé (or pink) veal is the kind that involves a more ethical and humane treatment – or at least avoids the worst treatments that have been traditionally associated with veal rearing. Please, please talk to your butcher about the origins of all your meat.
Rosé veal with rosé sauce and toasted capers

[Edited 24 May 2010] When Helen emailed me, from the other side of the world, I was a little surprised. I had sent her a recipe in response to her “Blogger Secret Ingredient Challenge” (capers) because there, in London, England, was a cook and writer and thinker who though things I would like to think and cooked things I would like to eat. To win, an even bigger surprise.
Serves 2

1 tsp olive oil
2 large veal scaloppine, tenderised
100 ml rosé (or dry white wine)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp capers in white wine vinegar (you could used salted, but rinse well first), drained and pat dry

Steamed or sautéd vegetables, to serve

Heat a non stick pan (big enough to fit the veal all at once – if your pan is only big enough to hold one piece, cook one at a time) to very hot. Add a teaspoon of olive oil. Sear the scaloppine on each side until quite brown and cooked through. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add wine to the pan – it will foam and boil almost instantly. Boil for a couple of minutes, until reduced and thickened slightly. Add the veal back to the pan and cook for a further five minutes. place a piece of veal on each plate and drizzle with remaining sauce.

Wipe out the pan (or use a clean one, it depends on how much washing up you want to do) and heat the olive oil. When hot, add the capers. Cook for about a minute, shaking the pan to prevent from burning or sticking. Scatter over the top of the veal.

Serve with a glass of rosé.

If you want dessert, try this.

1 comment:

  1. It looks wonderful. Many many thanks for taking part in BSI. And congratulations on winning.