I’ve written previously about my love for veal breast, a wonderfully flavorful and inexpensive cut of meat that really showcases what braising can do. Recently I tried a new way to prepare it, from the cookbook Pasta Sfoglia by Ron Suhanosky and Colleen Suhanosky and Susan Simon. I was thrilled when I came across this book (in a bargain bin, no less, for all of $5) having enjoyed a wonderful meal at Sfoglia in New York City last year. The recipes in the book looked truly unique, creative, and challenging – not just from a skill standpoint but from a taste perspective as well (I can’t wait to get good enough strawberries to try the spaghetti with strawberries, tomato and balsamic.) In any event, one recipe which immediately caught my eye was for Linguine alla Genovese with veal ragù and salsa verde. Preparing the dish was an all-afternoon event, but well worth all the effort given how delicious it turned out.
I started with a 3-pound veal breast – a little smaller than the recipe called for but it’s what I had in my freezer to use up. That went into a good stove-to-oven pan for browning before being surrounded by chunky-cut carrots, onions, celery and parsley stalks (the leaves would be saved for the salsa verde.)
Next came the wine, water and a good long cook in the oven.
Once the meat was fork tender I took the breast out to cool enough I could shred the meat (and let one of my cats enjoy chewing on one of the breast bones!) I also cooked down the vegetables and broth in the oven a bit more to thicken it.
The shredded meat went back into the pan with the reducing sauce while I cooked the spaghetti noodles separately and made the salsa verde.
I wasn’t sure by the recipe instructions if I should have pureed the cooked vegetables or strained them out before adding back in the meat, but they tasted delicious as part of the final meal and weren’t overly-mushy.
All in all I think I may have a new favorite recipe for veal breast now, and the leftovers tasted even better the next day once all the flavors had truly merged together. Definitely a meal worth the time and effort to prepare!