Veal Scaloppine

Veal Scaloppine for Dinner

So, you need to feed a family of 4? I got you! The moment I started preparing for this delicious Veal Scaloppine, I knew it was a keeper. I usually buy the veal already cut into thin slices, but you can easily do it yourself but cutting a thin piece from the eye round and then pounding between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Beef or chicken are just as good. Have fun!

Veal Scaloppine

Serves 4

1 ½ lbs veal cutlets

½ cup all-purpose flour

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

½ teaspoon paprika

¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg

3 tablespoons olive oil, more as needed

1 shallot, finely chopped

1 ½ cups chicken stock

1 stick butter

1 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

 

  • Prepare the Veal Scaloppine: Season the veal on both sides with salt and pepper. Place the flour in a small bowl, and season with salt, pepper, paprika and nutmeg and mix well. Spread the flour on a sheet pan. Dredge each piece of veal in flour on both sides, shaking off the excess.

  • Pour 1 tablespoon of the olive oil on a large skillet over medium heat, and swirl the oil to cover the pan. Working in batches (very important! You only want to add one layer of veal at a time. It takes me 3 batches to cook the veal), add 3-4 pieces of veal to the pan and cook until it just starts to turn very lightly golden on each side, about 2 minutes per side. Repeat the procedure with all of the veal, and as they get cooked, place them on a shallow dish covered with aluminum foil to keep moist. Add more olive oil to each batch as you cook the veal.
  • Prepare the Sauce: Add shallots to the pan (if your pan is dry, add another tablespoon or so of olive oil to the pan) and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon until it just cooked through, about 2 minutes.

  • Add the chicken stock and let it come to a full boil, then reduce the heat and let the stock concentrate and reduce by half, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the butter in pieces (make sure heat is at a bare minimum, as the heat can break the butter. If you don’t feel sure, turn the heat completely off— the butter will still melt, but keep whisking). When the butter is completely melted, the sauce should have some consistency to it, and remember, do not boil a butter sauce, so maintain heat at minimum. Add the lemon juice, and the veal pieces to the sauce. Cover the pan and warm everything together for 5 minutes, allowing the veal to braise gently in the sauce and become nice and tender. Distribute veal scaloppine onto 4 warm plates and spoon warm sauce on top. Garnish with parsley.

 

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Osso-Bucco: Touchdown At The Table!

Osso-Bucco: Touchdown At The Table!

Here is one of the most praised dishes a cook can cook. Yep! If you make a good Osso-Buco (which are veal shanks) you will hear many compliments from your guests. Just follow the yellow brick road! Best of all, you can actually make this dish a good 7 to 10 days ahead of time, and it re-heats really well. That means, if you have a dinner party on a Saturday night, you can make it the weekend before, and it will taste just perfect. Trust me. I learned this when I used to work at La Caravelle, back in the late 1990’s and this dish was one of their signatures on the menu. In fact, Osso Buco, like many other stewed recipes, tastes even better a few days after it’s made.

You can serve this dish with a Risotto Milanese (recipe follows), the classic Italian way, or you can serve with a variety of starches like polenta, plain risotto, orzo or basmati rice.

 

Osso Bucco A la Milanese

Serves 6 people

 

For the Osso Bucco:

One 28-ounce can whole, peeled tomatoes, preferably imported

6 veal shanks, tied firmly with string

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

All-purpose flour, about ½ cup, for dredging the meat

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 large onion, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

1 bay leaf

3 sprigs thyme, picked leaves

½ cup dry white wine or vermouth

1½ cup veal or chicken stock (preferably home-made or deli bought, but avoid the boxed product)

 

For the Risotto Milanese:

4 cups chicken stock (preferably home-made or deli bought)

large pinch saffron thread

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small onion, chopped finely

1 ½ cup Arborio rice

½ cup dry white wine

¼ cup freshly chopped parsley for garnish

 

  1. Prepare the Osso-Buco: Center a rack in the middle of the oven and pre-heat it to 325˚F.
  2. Cut the tomatoes into pieces and reserve the juices. Set aside.
  3. Season the meat on both sides with salt and pepper and dredge lightly in flour, shaking the excess. Heat the olive oil in a Dutch-oven pan or any other large pan over medium heat and cook the veal shanks until they are lightly brown and crispy on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and transfer to a bowl. Cover with foil to keep moist.
  4. Add the garlic and cook until it just starts to turn brown, about 2 minutes. (You might need to add a bit more oil at this point.) Add the onion, celery, carrot, bay leaf, and thyme and cook, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon until vegetables are soft and tender, about 10 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes and juice and continue to cook.
  6. Add the wine and let it cook and evaporate almost completely.
  7. Add the chicken or veal stock and bring to a boil. Return the veal shanks to the pan, and fit them all inside, nestling them one close to the other, preferably in one layer. Cover the pan with the lid, and place the pot in the oven. Cook for 2 to 2 ½ hours, checking the liquid level every half an hour, making sure there is plenty of liquid, about half way through the meat should be fine. If need be, add a little. If the meat is falling off the bone—it’s done. If it’s not, return to the oven for another 30 minutes or so.
  8. When the veal shanks are done, remove from the oven, and let the meat rest inside the pan, off the heat, but with the lid still on for a good 2 to 3 hours (just forget about it and go do something else.)
  9. You can make this up to 7 days ahead of time, keep in the fridge in a plastic container fitted with a tight lid and reheat the day of serving.
  10. For the Risotto Milanese: In a medium saucepan bring the stock to a simmer with the saffron threads.
  11. In another large, heavy saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes.
  12. Add the rice and stir frequently, until the grains are warm, shiny, and coated with the onion mixture, about 3 minutes.
  13. Add the wine and bring to a boil until the liquid is almost absorbed, about 2 minutes.
  14. Slowly add one ladle of simmering stock and allow the rice to cook, stirring often, until the liquid is absorbed. Adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Add another ladle, and repeat the process. Continue adding ladles of stock, only when the previous addition has been completely absorbed. Cook until the rice is tender but still firm to the bite, 18 to 20 minutes. Don’t let the risotto get too thick; if the rice seems to have absorbed all of the liquid, add another tablespoon or so of stock to achieve the right creamy consistency. Taste the dish, check for flavor and doneness.
  15. To Serve: Arrange the risotto on the bottom of large warm plates. Place each veal shank on top of the rice, spoon a generous amount of sauce on top and garnish with parsley. Serve immediately.
Step by Step Chicken-Stuffed Beef Roulade

Step by Step Chicken-Stuffed Beef Roulade

 

Chicken Stuffed-Beef Roulade

Chicken Stuffed-Beef Roulade

Meat stuffed with chicken, a specialty from Goias. Wait. What? At first, it seems like an odd combination but when you taste, you’ll love it! The roulade is slowly roasted and presents a spectrum of textures: crusty and flaky meat around the edges and moist ground chicken stuffing packed with aromatic flavors in the center, this roulade is succulent and rich.

Truth be told: this is not the easiest of dishes, and it needs to rest in the refrigerator for a day. Yet, it is my kind of dish. There is some work and technique involved, especially when it comes to butterflying and tying the meat. I must confess I have never mastered the butcher’s way of using twine, and the two endings of this meat log always suffer from my poor tying skills (I am working on it!). Even though I don’t make the most perfect embroidery, once roasted, it looks gorgeous and tastes sublime.

 

Serves 6 to 8

 

1 flank steak (around 1 ½ pounds)

3/4 pound ground chicken (mixed from white and dark)

2 scallions (white and green parts), finely chopped (about ¼ cup)

1 stalk celery, finely chopped (about ¼ cup)

Half red onion, chopped (about ½ cup)

Half yellow bell pepper, finely chopped (about ½ cup)

Half red bell pepper, finely chopped (about ½ cup)

1 small carrot, finely diced (about 1/3 cup)

4 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 chicken bouillon cube, grated into powder

2 teaspoons Kosher salt

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  1. Using a boning knife or a very sharp paring knife, trim any excess fat and silver skin from the flank steak. Carefully butterfly the meat, working across the grain and trying not to tear it. Start through one of the long edges and slowly cut deeper into the meat. Keeping the meat flat and the knife blade horizontal at all times will help with the job. When you reach the center, stop and open the meat as if it was a book (If you know a good butcher, don’t be shy to ask him to do it for you). Season both sides liberally with salt and pepper. Set aside while you prepare the filling.
  2. Place the ground chicken in a large bowl. Stir in the scallions, celery, red onion, bell peppers, carrot, garlic, parsley, one tablespoon of the olive oil, the soy sauce, and bouillon cube. Mix well. To check the seasoning, pinch off an egg-size piece and cook it in a hot skillet with a dash of oil. Season the rest of the filling with salt and pepper as necessary.
  3.  Place the ground meat mixture inside the opened flank steak, cut side up, and spread throughout the surface of the meat. Make sure to leave a 2-inch edge on all sides. The amount of stuffing may vary slightly, depending on the size of your flank steak.beef chicken roulade
  4. Carefully roll the flank steak making sure to fold some meat over the ends to avoid ground meat from escaping.chick beef roulade
  5. Tie the roulade with a string, making a knot in 5 to 6 places. Don’t worry if the ends are a little messy; as long as you tie it well, the dish will hold its shape.  Wrap the roulade in plastic wrap and keep it in the refrigerator for 1 day (or up to 2 days) so that the flavors have a chance to blend. Make sure to bring it to room temperature at least 30 minutes before proceeding.img_1509img_5523
  6. Pre-heat the oven to 225˚F.
  7. Warm the remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium to high heat. Add the roulade and cook, rotating every 2 minutes until it forms a nice brown crust all over, about 8 minutes.
  8. Transfer to a cutting board and let it rest for about 10 minutes.
  9. Wrap the roulade in aluminum foil and seal the edges very tightly. Place seam side up pm a baking sheet on the center rack of the oven. Cook for about 2 hours, until you reach a 155˚F internal temperature. Save any juices that render and accumulate.
  10. Remove from the oven and let rest with the foil wrap closed, for about 15 minutes.
  11. Open the foil, pour any juices into a bowl, and place the meat onto a cutting board. Using a serrated knife cut ¾ -inch thick slices. Serve with the juices drizzled on top.
Steak With Mustard Sauce

Steak With Mustard Sauce

Steak with Mustard Onion Sauce

 Bife com Molho de Mostarda e Cebola

Steak with Mustard Onion Sauce

Steak with Mustard Onion Sauce

It is my intention to see everyone, and I mean everyone cooking Brazilian cuisine during the Olympics! And just to prove that Brazilian cooking is way easier, way more accessible and way more delicious that you can ever imagine, I have selected a few typical dishes to share with you.

This recipe is a bridge to Brazilian homey, comforting cooking, and you won’t find it too often in restaurant menus (mostly in home kitchens). You can make this recipe using one of the two mustards, but I like a combination of coarse and smooth Dijon mustard, and the different nuances brought by each. It’s affordable, easy to make, and absolutely delicious!

Discover just how good it is on a weeknight!

 

Steak with Mustard Onion Sauce

 Bife com Molho de Mostarda e Cebola

Serves 4

 

1½ lbs beef skirt steak, cut into 4 pieces

Kosher salt

Freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoon unsalted butter (more if needed)

2 medium onions, thinly sliced

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons coarse Dijon mustard

½ cup beef stock (or veal, or water)

½ cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley

 

  • Season the meat with salt and pepper on both sides. Refrigerate the meat for at least 2 hours or preferably overnight. Let it come to room temperature at least 30 minutes before cooking. Heat a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add the butter, and swirl the pan around. Sear the steaks on both sides, until nice and crusty, lowering the heat as needed. Cook until they are done to your liking, about 2-3 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a plate and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  • Add the onions to the pan, and cook on low heat, scraping the brown bits from the pan with a wooden spoon (add more butter if necessary) until the onions are soft and brownish with meat juices, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the two mustards and stir well.
  • Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and add the heavy cream (don’t let it boil or cream will curdle) until the sauce develops a good body, and shows a light brown color, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Return the meat to the pan, and cook everything together until the meat is hot, about 2-3 minutes. Place the meat on warm plates, spoon the sauce on top, and garnish with fresh parsley.

 

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