I don’t have guests over for dinner very often (New Years resolution to do that more) so when I do I spend an exorbitant amount of time pouring over tastespotting looking for the perfect recipe. This time I was looking for the perfect menu for a dinner at my place. I was excited.
So I searched for something both special but simple. How about Veal Scaloppine with Mushrooms & Marsala, Herb Roasted Potatoes, Carrot Salad with Lemon and Herbs, and Molten Chocolate Cake? Well, I’ve never cooked veal before and I’m not even sure I have ever had it before. But it sounds kinda fancy but looks kinda easy so lets do it.
I found both the Veal Scaloppine recipe and Herb Roasted Potatoes on Kitchen Runway’s blog, the Carrot Salad recipe in the NY Times Dining & Wine section, and the Molten Chocolate Cakes on Culinary Covers as it was featured in Woman’s Day magazine last year. Hows that for research and siting my sources?
Everything was fantastic. The recipes were all easy to follow and I was able to do 95% of the work before my guests even got to my house allowing me to enjoy time with them. The veal was tender and the sauce was rich and velvety. The potatoes were flavorful and the thyme running through made them a natural pair with the veal. The carrot salad was light and a good alternative to a more typical greens salad. But then there is the cake… Mmmm the cake. The cake was so simple (5 ingredients which you could prepare ahead of time) and plated beautifully. The outside was set and firm like a cake but the center was gooey and spilled out like lava. My ramekins were a little wider than I wanted (or maybe I should have filled them up higher!) so the cakes came out a little short but they were delicious and beautiful. This recipe is for two cakes which you can double if you’d like (but its actually nice not to spend the following day eating leftover cake batter out of its bowl as I watch bad TV). Its definitely a keeper (scroll all the way down for it).
I need to make those cakes again, who wants to come over so I have an excuse??
Here are the recipes – enjoy!
Prep: 15 minutes Cooking time: ~30mins Serves: 4
¼ C extra-virgin olive oil
¼ C all purpose flour
salt and fresh ground black pepper
8-10 (2oz) veal medallions (scaloppine)
2 C sliced crimini mushrooms
1½ C sweet Marsala wine
3 Tbs cold unsalted butter
2 Tbs fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp corn starch, 1 Tbs cold water (optional – if you prefer a thicker sauce)
- Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat until the oil is almost smoking
- Place flour in a shallow dish (i.e. rectangular tupper-ware), season with salt and pepper
- Dredge the veal in the seasoned flour, shaking off any excess flour
- Placed dredged veal into hot pan and cook until golden brown on both sides (about 2 minutes each side) Make sure to only turn once
- Place cooked veal on platter
- Add crimini mushrooms to the same pan and saute until tender, browned and the juices have evaporated.
- Add Marsala wine and bring to a boil. Cook until wine has reduced by 1/3
- Add butter and place veal back into the pan. Bring back to a boil and reduce heat. Then simmer for 5 to 6 minutes
- Mix corn starch and cold water, slowly add to pan and stir to thicken the sauce
- Add thyme and season to taste with salt and pepper
- Place veal on platter and pour the sauce over the meat and serve immediately
Prep time: 5 mins Cook time: 45-60 mins
2-2½ lbs. assorted small potatoes (Fingerlings, Red Bliss, Yukon Gold)
¼ C extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs fresh rosemary
1 Tbs fresh thyme
4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp garlic salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400º.
Place the clean potatoes in a large bowl.
In a measuring cup, whisk together the olive oil, rosemary, thyme, garlic, salt, garlic salt and pepper. Pour olive oil mixture over potatoes.
Using your hands, combine the ingredients and make sure the potatoes are well coated.
Line a baking sheet with foil for easier clean up. Using your hands, transfer the potatoes to the baking sheet. Make sure the potatoes are in a single layer. Save any unused oil from the bowl to dizzle over the potatoes after roasting.
Place baking sheet on the middle rack and roast for 45min to 60mins, until fork tender. Turning the potatoes every 20 mins to prevent burning.
Remove from oven and add reserved oil to the potatoes, toss and serve.
Adapted from “The Complete Robuchon” by Joël Robuchon (Knopf, 2008)
4 large or 6 medium carrots, peeled
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons peanut oil (or use more olive oil)
2 tablespoons chopped parsley, tarragon or a combination
Salt to taste
Buttery crackers, small biscuits or toasted slices of baguette brushed with olive oil, for serving.
Grate carrots in a food processor or by hand. Transfer to a bowl. Whisk lemon juice and oils together, pour over carrots, and toss. Add herbs and toss. Add salt to taste. Serve with crackers, biscuits or toast.
Molten Chocolate Cakes
Source: Women’s DayFebruary 2011
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, plus more for the ramekins
1 Tbsp. flour, plus more for the ramekins
1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1. Heat oven to 450°F. Butter two 6-oz ramekins and dust the inside with flour.
2. Place the butter and chocolate in a glass bowl and microwave on high in 20-second intervals, stirring after each, until melted and smooth.
3. Using an electric mixer, beat the egg, egg yolk and sugar in a medium bowl until thick and lighter in color, about 1 minute. Add the melted chocolate mixture and flour and beat until fully incorporated and smooth.
4. Divide the batter between the prepared ramekins. Bake until edges are set and center still jiggles slightly, 8 to 10 minutes. Let stand 15 seconds. Run a knife around edge, then invert each cake onto a plate. Dust with confections’ sugar and serve with fresh mint or berries, if desired. Serve immediately.