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Fruit & Veg City

Veal with onion sauce & polenta

While foraging at Fruit http://acheterdufrance.com/ & Veg City on Friday afternoon, I found veal at R29.99 per kilo(YUM!) yes, I love veal. My husband says “Dont send a boy to fight a Mans war” but, hey it’s veal (I draw the line at tiny baby veg). The great thing about veal is that you don’t have to cook it……….till the cows come home?
It wasn’t the greatest cuts, mostly shin but this is what I did:

2kg Veal – Take it off the bone but keep it in large pieces. The bones can be used to make veal stock which is delicious – white stock’- more about that later.

In a large heavy based saucepan – that has a lid and can go into the oven – chop up and saute the following in a generous glug of olive oil:
3 large onions sliced & diced
4 cloves garlis
3 pieces of back bacon – sliced
(Always cook onions on low heat so that they sweat and release the sweet aromatics of onion & garlic)
1 1/2 large carrots – cubed
3 small celery stems and leaves – one if shop bought
2 stems of fresh fennel (available from Woolies – real good value at R7.99)
2 bay leaves
salt

Stir from time to time. Cut up the meat while the onions are sweating down.
When meat is ready – pull out a frying pan or wok, small glug of olive oil, get it really hot and start dropping in pieces of veal. Don’t put in to much otherwise it will boil. You just want to seal the veal and put a light colour onto it.
Layer the meat on top of the onion mixture. Do not at any time stir together.
Add enough water to just cover onion mix
Crumble fresh time and rosemary over the top.
Thinly slice a lemon and randomly layer over meat.

Cover with the lid and put into the oven at 180 for 1 1/2 hours – check it every half hour to make sure that it is not drying out.

For the polenta:

Bring 1L water to a gentle boil and sprinkle in 2 cups of polenta stirring all the time and making sure it doesn’t clump (a whisk is good for this).

Add a blob of butter and some parmesan or grano padana. Ina Paarman does a Pasta Spice that has herbs and faux cheese in it and it actually works really well to add a bit of flavour. (I have┬áno idea how this landed up in my spice cupboard it’s not something I would normally buy)

Keep stirring that Polenta! It should be much like a ‘stywe pap’.

After 5 minutes of stirring, or until your arms are starting to feel the burn – turn out into a buttered baking dish and smooth out. The polenta need to be about an inch thick. Sprinkle, herbs, cheese, black pepper on top and pop into the oven next to your cooking veal for 20 min or the bottom has cooked a crust. Finish off under the grill to get the top golden.

When veal is tender, carefully remove all of it from the top of veg mix and keep warm along with lemons.
Put all onion-veg mix into a blender and blend into creamy sauce. Remove the bay leaves!

Cut a generous wedge of  polenta, put it in a bowl, cover with onion sauce then with pieces of veal and garnish with cooked lemons.

Pour a glass of wine, stoke up the fire and enjoy!