MONTVILLE, NJ - I made this dish for a special occasion to celebrate a milestone with my wife and I wanted to make something that celebrated the season as well. Veal is almost a perfect meat to go with spring vegetables as the milder flavor doesn’t overpower the more delicate flavors of the spring vegetables. Here, fresh fava beans and peas take center stage. The softer textures of those lightly blanched vegetables are balanced out with carrots and green onions that are just cooked through and thinly sliced raw radish adds color and a touch of spiciness. The whole thing is brought together with just a touch of veal stock and white wine reduction drizzled over the top of the veal chop, creating an almost glaze like glisten and sheen that provides additional depths of flavor with a touch of acidity.
Both fava beans and peas are available right now fresh in the produce section of most grocery stores. However, if you can’t find them, both can be found in the frozen food section as well. Simply unthaw them and add them at the end…no need to cook them as they are blanched and then frozen. So, as long as they are thawed, just toss them in the pan at the end to warm them through for a few seconds.
I found the microgreens used as a garnish at Wegman’s market. If you can’t find them at your store, chopped Italian parsley would work well too.
The veal chop pictured is pretty large and can easily feed two. If you have your butcher cut them thick, plan on one chop per two people or adjust as needed.
2 Thick cut veal chops
1 Quart veal stock
½ Cup white wine
1 Cup shelled and skinned fresh fava beans
1 Cup fresh peas
2 Carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
3-4 Larger sized scallions or spring onions, each cut into thirds
2 Radishes, thinly sliced
Microgreens for garnish (optional)
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- Take the fava beans out of their shell and then blanch them by bringing water to a boil and then adding a handful of salt. Prepare an ice bath. Once at a boil and the water has turned clear again, add the fava beans and cook for three minutes. Remove the beans from the pan and place immediately into the ice bath to stop the cooking.
- Once cool, remove the beans from the ice bath and remove their skins. Set aside.
- Add a bit more salt to the water and then add the peas to the boiling water. Cook for 30 seconds and immediately remove them and place them in the ice bath. Once cooled, remove from the ice bath and set aside with the fava beans.
- Peel the carrots and chop into pieces approximately ½ inch thick. Place them into the boiling water and cook until just cooked through, about 8 minutes or so. Remove and place in ice bath and once cool, remove and set aside.
- Place the wine and veal stock into a medium sized pan and bring to a low boil over medium heat. Allow to boil down until approximately ½ cup remains, about 20 minutes.
- Dry the veal chops with paper towels and then season with flaky salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Heat a large skillet or cast iron pan (I used cast iron) over high heat for four or five minutes. Add some grapeseed oil to the pan and allow it to coat the pan. Once the pan begins to lightly smoke, add the veal chops.
- Cook the veal chops for 3-4 minutes per side for rare. Add an additional minute or so for medium rare, another minute or so for medium, and so on.
- Once the chops are done, remove them from the pan and allow them to rest for 10 minutes or so.
- In the meantime, add the reduced veal stock to the pan used to cook the veal and deglaze the pan by scraping the bottom with a wooden spoon. Once done, set aside in a warm place.
- Place a medium sized pan over medium low heat. Add a light touch of oil to the pan along with a splash of water. Add the chopped green onions and carrots and cook for one minute. Then add the fava beans and pea and cook another 30 seconds or so. Remove the vegetables promptly. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Thinly slice the radishes.
To serve, place the veal chop in the center of the plate and drizzle a bit of the reduced veal stock/pan sauce over the chop. Scatter the various vegetables around the plate, ensuring that each serving receives a little or each individual vegetable. Add the raw radishes around the plate. Finally, add the microgreens sparingly around the plate for garnish. Serve while warm.
Craig Thiebaud is a Diplomat of Classic Culinary Arts at the International Culinary Center (formerly The French Culinary Institute) located in SOHO in New York City. After extensive training in the Art of French cooking and professional food preparation in general, he brings his knowledge of food and passion for cooking to us by sharing culinary techniques and creating recipes that mainly use local, seasonal ingredients and can be easily recreated in the home kitchen. Good, wholesome meals for the family can be created quickly with planning, using the best techniques with the best ingredients that are both affordable and available. Let's get back into the kitchen together!