Braised Veal Cheeks are festive and delicious. The presentation offers rich and beautiful colors and textures on a simple plate. If you have not made Veal Cheeks, give them a try. They are succulent, meaty, soft, subtle and tender with a delicate flavor. We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do.
The Christmas place setting below is built layer upon layer to savor each delicious course. Adding a charger gives a place setting depth, followed by the solid dinner plate and the festive Santa plate. This Santa bowl envelops the soup course and as each layer is added we are creating a culinary gift to be unwrapped.
The final dinner course is served on a simple solid plate.
Veal Cheeks are considered a delicacy and may require a special order from your butcher.
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 16 4-ounce veal cheeks, trimmed of excess sinew and fat
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 celery rib, chopped
- 1 turnip, chopped
- 2 cups red zinfandel wine
- 3 cups veal stock
- 1/4 teaspoon coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 small bunch of thyme
- 6 Roma tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup fresh cranberries, cooked slightly with granulated sugar
- Kosher Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Soft Sun Dried Tomato Polenta
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
- 1 cup coarse corn meal
- 1 ounce sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1 teaspoon white truffle oil
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh garlic, finely minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh shallots, finely diced
- 1 teaspoon Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
- 1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- In an ovenproof, 6-quart heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high heat until almost smoking.
- While oil is heating, pat veal cheeks dry and season with salt and pepper.
- Brown veal cheeks on all sides. Remove from pan.
- Add vegetables, stir and season. Cook about 10 minutes or until soft and lightly caramelized.
- Add wine to pan and scrape up any bits. Reduce wine by half and add veal stock.
- Return veal cheeks to pot with tomatoes and re-season.
- Bring to a simmer and cover with lid (or foil), then braise in the middle of oven for about 3 hours until meltingly tender.
- Remove veal from braising liquid and keep warm. Strain liquid and return to a saucepan. Skim fat from top and reduce over low heat until you have ½ cup of braising liquid.
- Pour liquid over veal cheeks. Set aside and keep warm.
Soft Sun Dried Tomato Polenta
- In a medium saucepan, heat up oil over medium high heat. Add shallots and garlic and sauté until lightly caramelized.
- Add broth and bring to a boil.
- Add corn meal and stir, bring to a simmer and reduce heat. Simmer for about 8-10 minutes and stir from time to time until moisture is absorbed.
- Add cream, sun dried tomatoes, parsley, and white truffle oil and fold in the Parmesan cheese.
- To serve, arrange the polenta in the center of a serving plate, place the veal cheeks on top of polenta.
- Use your favorite vegetables, as shown in the picture, like oven-roasted yellow beets, baby zucchini, white bottom mushroom, sugar snap peas and fresh cranberries.
- Drizzle sauce over the cheeks and around the plate and garnish with fried parsnip and rosemary sprig.
Created for SW by | Chef Michael Rueggeberg