One whiff of something good cooking in someone’s oven can be an inspiration. The other day I picked up some slacks that a dressmaker had hemmed for me and the aroma of roasting meat was so powerfully wonderful in her house that I commented a few times and she kept asking if I wanted a taste. I wasn’t up for a bite but I did ask what it was she was making. She told me it was a pork loin. She put it into a baking pan, seasoned it with garlic and oregano, added “some white wine and a little lemon juice” and baked it, cover on, then browned it at the end.
I decided to copy her dish with a veal roast. My house smelled just as wonderful as hers had and although I didn’t taste hers, I’m sure it was good, because mine was wonderful. I added a sliced fennel bulb. Have to tell her that next time I see her. Here’s the recipe.
Braised Veal Roast
1 large bulb fennel
1 boneless veal shoulder roast, about 3-1/2-4 pounds (or use a pork roast)
2 teaspoons olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup white wine
juice of one medium lemon, about 3 tablespoons
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Remove the fennel fronds, rinse the bulbs and cut the bulbs into thick slices. Place the slices inside a deep casserole dish. Place the veal on top. Brush the olive oil on top and sprinkle to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with the garlic and oregano. Pour the wine and lemon juice around the meat. Cover the pan and roast for one hour. Raise the oven temperature to 350 degrees, remove the casserole cover and continue to roast the meat until the top is lightly browned and a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the meat reads 150-155 degrees. Remove the meat to a carving board and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Serve with the fennel and pan juices. Makes 4 servings