The flesh of veal should be pink and firm, the bones hard. If it has a blue tinge and is flabby, it has been killed too young, and is unwholesome. Like lamb, it must be used while perfectly fresh and be thoroughly cooked. It contains less nourishment than other kinds of meat; also, having less flavor, it requires more seasoning. Veal is frequently used as a substitute for chicken. It can be made into croquettes and salads very acceptably.
The fillet is cut from the upper part of the leg, and should be four to six inches thick. Only one good fillet can be cut from the leg. Press and tie it into good round shape. Lay a few slices of larding pork over the top. Place it in very hot oven for fifteen minutes; then lower the heat; baste frequently with water from the pan; allow eighteen to twenty minutes to the pound. It must be thoroughly cooked, but not dried. Remove the slices of pork from top a half hour before it is done, so it may brown. The bone may be removed from the fillet before cooking, and the space filled with stuffing made of crumbs, sweet herbs, pepper and salt, and a little chopped salt pork. Thicken the gravy in pan to serve with the fillet.
Twenty to twenty-five inmates per pound.
Have the blade removed, and fill the space with a stuffing made of bread crumbs, thyme, marjoram, lemon juice, chopped salt pork, salt and pepper, and an egg; also chopped mushrooms, if desired. Sew up the opening, press and tie it into good shape, and roast the same as the fillet. The stuffing may also be made of minced veal cut from the knuckle, highly seasoned.
The fricandeau is the most choice cut of veal. It is taken from the upper round of the leg, and is one side of the fillet. As it destroys that cut, it commands the highest price. It should be cut four inches thick, and is usually larded and braised. Place it in a baking-pan on a layer of sliced salt pork, and chopped carrot, onion, and turnip. Add a bouquet of herbs, a cupful of stock, and enough water to fill the pan one and a half inches deep. Cover closely, and let cook in moderate oven, allowing twenty minutes to the pound; baste frequently. Remove the cover for the last half hour, so the meat may brown. Strain the gravy from the pan to serve with it.
Leave the cutlet whole or cut it into pieces of uniform size and shape; dredge with salt and pepper; dip in egg and cover with bread crumbs or with flour; saute cutlets in drippings, or in a frying-pan after slices of salt pork have been tried out. Cook until well browned on both sides; then place them on a hot dish and moisten the top with a little lemon juice; or, omitting the lemon juice, serve with them a tomato or a Bearnaise sauce, or make a gravy by adding a little flour to the grease in the pan, and diluting to right consistency, after the flour is browned, with stock or water. If the gravy is used, put it in the bottom of the dish and place the cutlets on it.