This dish had everything going for it–its quick to prepare, delicious, and to seal the deal: its veal! Some times, the simplest approaches are the best kind, and for this, I decided to stick to one pan so as to have really flavorful meat and to use those juices for an even more flavorful pan sauce. So today: Veal Chops with an Herbed Pan Sauce.
While the dish has a somewhat rustic appearance, the taste is stunning. The veal had a great, buttery crust on it while the meat inside was melt-in-your-mouth tender with that delightful, harmoniously neutral veal flavor. The sauce was simple, but surprisingly rich and hearty, being earthy, herbaceous, and slightly sweet. This was also given body from the gelatin released in cooking the veal and enriched with butter to add that little touch that puts it over the top.
The only thing that didn’t live up to my expectations: the cheese I stuffed into the chop. It didn’t take away from the dish, but it didn’t add anything either, so next time around, I wouldn’t waste my time with it. For completeness though, I’ve included it in the instructions below.
- 2 veal chops (~1.1 lbs)
- 2 garlic cloves
- olive oil
- 2 Tbsp butter
- ~1/4 cup of tomato sauce
- 1/4-1/2 cup red wine
- fontina/pecornio romano
Season the veal chops with salt and pepper. If stuffing the chops, make a slit on the outside of the meat, stabbing your knife deep into the meat and rocking it back and forth to make a cavity without making a large opening. Once you’re happy with the size of the cavity you’ve made, stuff it with cheese until you can’t fit any more in there.
In a hot pan, warm up some olive oil and melt a good sized knob of butter. Then, add the veal chops and brown on all sides for about 2-3 minutes each. Remove them from heat and set aside.
Now with the oil and butter still hot in the pan, add the garlic and sauté for about a minute. Deglaze with red wine, and after a minute or two, throw in the herbs.
Add a good scoop of tomato sauce and give things a stir. Put the veal chops back in the pan, drop the heat below medium, and cover the pan.
Continue to simmer this for about 15 minutes, turning the chops once and basting with the sauce every few minutes. During the last minute or two of cooking, enrich the sauce with a knob of butter, stirring until incorporated.
Finally, the veal and the sauce are done, so go ahead and plate one chop per person. I served this with a side of linguine and a simple tomato sauce (using san marzanos), garnished with some toasted pine nuts and shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano. Enjoy!