I really, really love veal. I sigh in despair when I raise the subject of veal and people suck air through their teeth with a “oooh, but it’s so cruel” expression. Veal has a major PR disaster to recover from in this country before it gets welcomed back into kitchens.
So when Farmison sent me some topside veal to cook with, I punched the air. Any excuse to use it works for me. Farmison is a great idea; sourcing excellent food from smaller producers around the country (and beyond) to put together meat boxes and seasonal packs.
They sent me a whole bunch of things to try: porchetta, pineapples and more, some of which I’ll blog about later. But I have to mention the black potatoes: truly nasty things devoid of flavour. I couldn’t find them on their site to link to, but you’re not missing anything.
The Dexter veal however was great. This recipe is a gutsy braise, ensuring the meat stays moist. I’ve paired it with some unusual parmesan-roasted red potatoes to bounce off the sweet-tomatoey gravy.
Braised Dexter Veal with Roasted Red Potatoes (serves 4 – 6):
For the veal:
800g Dexter veal roasting joint
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 onion, peeled and diced
1 celery stick, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon tomato puree
1 glass red wine
500ml beef stock
For the potatoes:
5 – 6 red potatoes, diced
1 onion, peeled and diced
A large handful grated parmesan
4 garlic cloves, squashed
Pinch of dried thyme
- Preheat the oven to 170°C, and get a large casserole dish on a very high hob. Add a tablespoon of oil to the pan. Season the veal all over with salt and pepper and when the dish is hot add to the pan. Brown on all sides and put to one side.
- Add the diced vegetables, bay and tomato and stir fry for 2 minutes. Add the wine and scrape at the bottom of the pan to free the sticky bits. Keep stirring until the wine has almost completely reduced and add the stock. Bring up to the boil, put the veal back in the pan and put a lid on it. Transfer to the oven and cook until the veal reaches 65°C when checked with a meat thermometer.
- While the veal cooks prepare the potatoes. Toss the diced potato with the other ingredients along with a tablespoon of oil and salt and pepper. Put in the oven to bake and stir occasionally.
- When the veal is ready, turn the oven up to 200°C to brown the potatoes. Remove the veal to a carving board and cover with foil to keep warm. With a sieve over a bowl ladle in all the diced veg and strain off the juices. Discard the veg and put the gravy back in pan over a high heat and reduce rapidly until it thickens to the desired consistency. Carve the veal, serve with the potatoes and seasonal vegetables with the gravy on the side.