Wow, my friends. I’ve had quite possibly the craziest month of my life, which is in itself a incredible thing to say since I’ve had some very crazy times, but in terms of work I’ve never quite worked like this before. It looks like the six-day work week is here to stay (at least in my life), and I’m really trying to get accustomed to working longer days and longer weeks in order to get Delish Dish Gourmet Chef Services off the ground.
And this little business of mine is picking up way faster than I ever imagined: I’m booked for almost every weekend in May already! I’m doing a bridal shower, a Cinco de Mayo/Derby Day burrito party, a 50-person rehearsal dinner of sorts and, of course, Final Fridays at Japp’s Since 1879 (who’s website will be up and running shortly I’m told)!
I’m so grateful and amazed at how many people have asked me to cook for them since I launched the business. If things keep on the up and up, I’ll be a full-time chef in no time! (YES!!) And let me tell you, I’m really looking forward to quitting my day job—or at least one of them! Working four jobs has been a juggling act, but that’s what Libras do best I’m told 🙂
But really, we all know you’re here for the food, and this dish is a doozy! I’ve had Dorie’s recipe for Green-as-Spring Veal Stew bookmarked for quite some time now, and when I came across Mark Bitman’s even more simple version, I knew I had to combine the two recipes to make my own version. With all the changes I’ve made this recipe is most definitely mine, but I have to thanks Dorie and Mark Bitman for their guiding hand with this one.
This dish really does scream “SPRING!!!” The vibrant green sauce is incredibly fresh, and every bite packs a wallop of herby awesomeness (yes, that is a technical term) with a touch of sweetness from the peas.
As you know, I absolutely love veal (remember this post?), but veal stew meat can be hard to come by, at least here in Cincy. I simply called Eckerlin Meats in Findlay Market and asked them to set some aside for me to pick up later in the week. Score! If you don’t want to bother looking for veal stew meat, I suggest using chicken thighs. However, I wouldn’t add them to the simmering broth until after about an hour of cooking time, that way the chicken only simmers with the broth for about 25-30 minutes.
I decided to serve this dish over homey egg noodles, but you could serve it over rice or by itself as a simple stew. As always, the beauty of cooking is that you can make each dish yours.
OH WOW! I forgot to mention: The two-year anniversary of The Kitchen Bitch Blog came and went! Here’s what I was up to 2 years, long before culinary school and Delish Dish Gourmet Chef Services!
One Year Ago: Mushroom and Tofu Gratin + the Jam Giveaway Winner
Two Years Ago: Move Over Frozen Food Aisle! and Man Meals: Stop Your Bitchin’, Get into the Kitchen
Green-As-Spring Veal Stew
This recipe is a combination of two recipes: one that appears in Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table, and this one, which appeared in Mark Bitman’s Minimalist column. This recipe serves 4, but can easily serve 6 if you increase the veal to 3 pounds and the chicken broth and water to 2 cups each. Click here to download a printable PDF copy of this recipe.
1.5 pounds veal for stew, cut into 2-inch cubes
1.5 cups chicken broth
1.5 cups water
2 carrots, trimmed, peeled, and quartered
2 celery sticks, trimmed, peeled, and quartered
1 onion, quartered
3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
2 thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
Salt and freshly ground white or black pepper
4 cups packed spinach leaves (or a mix of argula and spinach)
1 bunch (from a 1 oz. package) fresh dill fronds
½ cup fresh parsley leaves
¼ cup green onions (or tarragon)
Scant ½ cup creme fraiche, sour cream, or Mexican crema
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
6 oz. (half of a 12 oz. bag) egg noodles
Put a Dutch oven or other large casserole with a tight-fitting lid over high heat and a minute later add oil and butter. Add the meat, in one layer (if you use the larger amount of meat you may have to cook in batches). Cook, undisturbed, until the meat is nicely browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Remove the meat from the pot.
Add the carrots, celery, onion, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, broth and water to the pot. Season the mix with salt and white pepper and bring to a boil. Stir in the veal and bring the broth back to a boil, then cover the pot (if your lid is a little shaky, seal the pot with foil and then top with lid) and lower the heat to a gentle simmer. Cook the veal for 1½ hours. (You can make the dish up to this point, and once cooled, refrigerate for a few hours, or for as long as overnight; reheat gently until the meat is heated through before continuing.) Transfer meat to a bowl, cover, and keep it warm while you work on the sauce.
Remove vegetables and herbs from the broth (you can fish them out with a slotted spoon or strain the broth and return it to the pot or to a smaller saucepan) and discard them. Bring the broth to a boil and boil until the sauce reduced to about 2 cups. (The sauce will thicken further when you add it to egg noodles at the end.)
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the egg noodles according to their package directions. Drain, return them to the pot, and toss with a tablespoon of oil.
Toss all of the greens and fresh herbs into the broth and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until the spinach is nicely wilted. Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor, in batches if necessary. Return sauce to the pot and add the frozen peas. Simmer the sauce until the peas are warmed through Whisk in creme fraiche and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Taste the sauce, add more lemon juice, if you’d like, and season as needed with salt and white pepper.
Return meat to the pot, give the pot a stir and gently heat everything through. Pour the sauce and meat over the cooked eggs noodles and toss together. If the sauce is a still a little too thin, stir the noodles over medium-low heat until the sauce thickens slightly. Serve immediately.