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The veal I made tonight was good, but need help with the sides...???

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Steady Habits Jan 5, 2009 10:17 PM

Maybe some of you could help me fine-tune this menu.

Here's the low-down on the veal chops. I pounded them, cut pockets, inserted *very* thin (almost translucent) slices of Provolone (forgot I had Gruyere, alas) and baked ham. I didn't want an obviously "Veal Cordon Bleu"; it was more to insert a little fat and moisture inside the veal meat, hence microthin slices. Dredged chops in flour, S&P, dried tarragon; browned them in EVOO and one pat of butter; transferred to FO. Deglazed saute pan with cup or so of Pinot Grigio, added maybe 1/2 cup of tomato juice I had frozen from a previously used can of San Marzanos, S&P, a little more tarragon, reduced the sauce. I sliced white mushrooms over the chops in the FO, added the reduction sauce, another pat of butter, another *light* dose of seasoning, covered tightly with foil, then the lid, and oven braised for about an hour at 325. O.M.G. These were so good. I had no idea I was capable of such a thing. Tasty, but no single dominating flavor, and melt-in-your-mouth tender, with a silky, interesting little sauce.

But. I couldn't get inspired re the sides. I wasn't sure whether I ought to add other assertive flavors, and if so, which ones. So, I made couscous (used water), threw in some raisins, S&P and a little butter; and carrots, cut in matchsticks, simmered, then glazed in butter and just a tiny bit each of S&P, grated nutmet and thyme. They both tasted good, and were satisfying, but I think I could have done better. Any ideas? Thanks.

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  1. KrystynaCooks RE: Steady Habits Jan 6, 2009 01:50 AM

    G'day with a Polish background, one food that got served a lot "KAPUSTA" - Fried Cabbage. I can't give exact amount but its easy to vary.U Need 4 Things: 1 -2 Chopped ONIONS :1/2 Green(Savoy)or Wom Bok (Chinese)CABBAGE: (roughly shredded, it will decrease in size)I buy which ever Cabbage is cheaper & 3-4 rashers BACON chopped. & LEMON JUICE (optional) In saucepan fry onions till opaque. In separate pan fry chopped bacon not too crisp set aside. Add shredded Cabbage to onions which should be soft & barely coloured (Now you can add good squeeze Lemon juice(optional) if you have on hand).I like to add lots of freshly ground pepper (to taste) & I add some water to barely cover vegetables in pot about 1 inch Stir well on medium heat & allow water to evaporate. Now mix in the cooked bacon If you like I do add the bacon grease (I'm not a fan of salt -I feel bacon is salty enough) My mum would allow cabbage to brown I don't to each to his own This should take about 10 minutes maximum to cook. You could serve with boiled bow tie pasta Maybe add little bit of grated parmesan or pecorino Hope you try & enjoy

    1 Reply
    1. re: KrystynaCooks
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      Steady Habits RE: KrystynaCooks Jan 6, 2009 08:06 PM

      Krystyna, I like the idea of something like because it sounds quick, has different textures, and I think the bacon accent would be perfect with that veal. But I admit to be intimidating by cabbage. My mother used to make it a lot; I didn't eat it then plus it looked complicated to me. (Don't know why; it just did.) The only cabbage I have cooked that I remember is baby bok choy, sauteed, with a few accents. It seems to me that there are a lot of cabbage varieties (like winter squashes). Are they interchangeable in recipes, or do you use certain types for specific dishes, etc., or different techniques?

    2. d
      Diane in Bexley RE: Steady Habits Jan 6, 2009 04:57 AM

      I adore veal chops in any way possible. My favorite starch side dish accompaniment is some sort of risotto - preferably with mushrooms, cream & Parmesan or Romano. If I do a creamy starch, I usually pair it with a roasted veggie, say asparagus, broccoli, or cauliflower with some EVOO, coarse salt, lemon and herbs.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Diane in Bexley
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        Steady Habits RE: Diane in Bexley Jan 6, 2009 08:08 PM

        Roasted veggies. Yum. I roast asparagus and cauliflower quite often, but never broccoli. I thought it would start to smell bad, or something. (I know that sounds silly, and I have broccoli often--love the stuff--but, honestly, Diane, for some reason I had that in my head. I take it I'm wrong?)

        1. re: Steady Habits
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          Diane in Bexley RE: Steady Habits Jan 7, 2009 06:10 AM

          SH, the trick with roasting broccoli is to cut into small flowerets so it doesn't take too long (dry out) and lubricate well with EVOO and lemon juice. Usually takes about 15-20 min at 400F in convection oven for "al dente". Stir a couple of times during cooking for even penetration of heat.

          1. re: Diane in Bexley
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            cheesecake17 RE: Diane in Bexley Jan 7, 2009 07:24 AM

            I roast broccoli the same way, but I usually add the broccoli to a pan of cherry tomatoes that have been roasting for a bit. Something about the combo of tomatoes and broccoli..

            1. re: cheesecake17
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              Steady Habits RE: cheesecake17 Jan 7, 2009 01:30 PM

              For a girl who's never roasted broccoli, now you two are inspring me. How about tossing in some cauliflower, too, for the crunch?

              1. re: Steady Habits
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                cheesecake17 RE: Steady Habits Jan 8, 2009 05:56 AM

                Roasted cauliflower is awesome also. I like to roast it to death though, until it's really browned and sweet, so I don't mix it in with the broccoli.

            2. re: Diane in Bexley
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              Steady Habits RE: Diane in Bexley Jan 7, 2009 01:28 PM

              Thank you, Diane. I like to serve broccoli, because of its health benefits. I'm glad to know a good way to prepare it.

        2. cassoulady RE: Steady Habits Jan 6, 2009 08:42 AM

          risotto is always good. I also love orzo, just cook the orzo, top with butter, parmesan and some peas and stir in a spoon full of cream, it is great. A bed of sauteed spinach might be nice.

          1 Reply
          1. re: cassoulady
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            Steady Habits RE: cassoulady Jan 6, 2009 08:14 PM

            I want to smack myself on the forehead, cassoulady. Orzo! The couscous was good, but...orzo...that would have been *the best partner* for this dinner last night--great with the sauce--and I had it in my pantry, too. Sheesh.

            And...I like to toss some peas into pasta as a side.

          2. Gio RE: Steady Habits Jan 6, 2009 08:51 AM

            Baked brown rice.... an easy and delicious way to cook rice, and a green veggie such as steamed broccoli as is or with an EVOO & anchovy sauce. I love veal in any preparation...

            5 Replies
            1. re: Gio
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              Steady Habits RE: Gio Jan 6, 2009 08:23 PM

              As long as I'm oven braising, I'm all for loading up the oven with other baked courses. Then I can put my feet up and cybertalk to you guys while dinner finishes. ;-) How do you make your achovy sauce? (Hubby likes anchovies..a lot.)

              1. re: Steady Habits
                Gio RE: Steady Habits Jan 7, 2009 03:26 AM

                It's just a simple Bagna Cauda:

                4 cloves finely minced garlic
                2 T melted butter
                A tin of anchovies
                Freshly ground black pepper
                1 cup EVOO
                Sauté the crushed garlic and chopped anchovy fillets in the oil. Stir until the anchovies disintegrate. Add butter and mix. Add pepper to taste.

                1. re: Gio
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                  Steady Habits RE: Gio Jan 7, 2009 01:31 PM

                  As it happens, I've got a special tin of anchovies that hubby had to have to snack on, but never wants to snack on. ;-) So maybe I'll make this for him, but I won't make veal for a little while. Can chicken or pork entrees stand up to this?

                  1. re: Steady Habits
                    Gio RE: Steady Habits Jan 7, 2009 04:42 PM

                    Absolutely, Steady.... The bagna cauda is generally used for vegetables - sometimes raw and sometimes as a dressing for otherwise bland steamed veggies. However, it makes a very tasty side dressing for any kind of meat or fish. Also it can be used to dip fresh bread into. Make a batch and decide for yourself how you want to use it.

                    1. re: Gio
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                      Steady Habits RE: Gio Jan 7, 2009 09:00 PM

                      Forget about *me* finding my way into my husband's heart via his stomach; *you* probably just have. He's Italian. Bread? Dipped in anchovy sauce? You're going to be his newest hero.

                      ;-)

                      Seriously, thank you for the recipe and information. Other than in Caesar Salad, anchovies aren't something I know too much about.

            2. FoodChic RE: Steady Habits Jan 7, 2009 01:55 PM

              How about some roasted garlic mashed potatoes? Or green onion mashed potatoes?
              I think they'd be perfect to dip into that wonderful sauce.

              Some nice broccoli rabe or roast aspargus on the side would be lovely too.

              2 Replies
              1. re: FoodChic
                FoodChic RE: FoodChic Jan 7, 2009 05:45 PM

                Or you could make manchego cheese mashed potatoes; manchego cheese risotto.
                Both are just sinful.

                1. re: FoodChic
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                  Steady Habits RE: FoodChic Jan 7, 2009 09:31 PM

                  Now that you mention some of these things, *chives* would have worked well along side this veal--so, either mashed potatoes or some kind of gratined potatoes with chives. Thanks, FC. I'll have to remember that. I love chives, and forget to use them.

                2. almansa RE: Steady Habits Jan 7, 2009 05:00 PM

                  Try making a creamy "polenta" with maseca instead of traditional cornmeal. It will take about 20 minutes cooking time. Then you could introduce some Latin hints like pimenton (sweet smoked paprika) as a garnish sprinkled over. Maybe make a tapenade with jalapeno stuffed olives and dollop on top.

                  1. pondrat RE: Steady Habits Jan 8, 2009 06:08 AM

                    Ditto the polenta.....and I would add spicy garlic broccoli rabe (be sure to par boil for a minute to take away some of the bitterness) and then saute with EVOO, thinly sliced garlic and crushed red pepper...generous salt and peper at end....some grated locatelli tossed in as well.

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