Breast of Veal for Passover


In my world, Passover is not usually the brisket fest that is typical for so many of the other families I know.

Our usual is turkey. Second night veal.

That's because, growing up, when the Seders were at my grandma's house, and the crowd could be as many as 24 people, she always served a big turkey the first night. The second night, when we were a much smaller group, she would cook a batch of veal cutlets with a crunchy matzo meal crust.

Frankly, I don't feel like frying up a whole mess of cutlets, so my Passover veal dinner will likely be breast of veal, one of my favorites meats to eat. I realize a lot of people think breast of veal is too down home for a festive occasion such as Passover.

I don't agree. Look how beautiful this roast is! Golden brown skin, meaty bones, moist meat, savory vegetables to accompany. Looks impressive to me! And also quite good to eat, for Passover or otherwise.

Roast Breast of Veal with Mushrooms, Onions and White Wine

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 10 ounces fresh mushrooms
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 breast of veal, about 3-4 pounds
  • 1/2 cup white wine

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for about 2 minutes, to soften slightly. Add the mushrooms, garlic and parsley, stir and cook for another 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon the vegetables into a roasting pan. Place the veal breast on top. Brush the top surface of the meat with the remaining olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes. Pour the wine over the meat. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees. Roast for another 45-50 minutes, basting occasionally, or until the surface is crispy.

Makes 4 servings

Breast of Veal with Mushroom "Dust"


Breast of Veal is either "peasant food" or "holiday festive food" depending on who you ask.

I don't care about such things. If I like how it tastes I want to eat it.

Like Breast of Veal. The meat is sweet and soft. The bones are gnaw-worthy.

I usually braise or stew this portion. But I decided to roast one, inspired by a recipe I saw in Bon Appetit Magazine for Grilled Porcini Rubbed Rack of Veal

Okay, theirs was rack, mine breast. Theirs was grilled, mine roasted. The ingredients are different, except for the dried mushrooms (they called for mushroom powder, I crushed my own dried mushrooms) and crushed red pepper.

But I do have to credit them for the inspiration. Dried mushrooms and veal -- perfecto!


Breast of Veal with Mushroom Dust

  • 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 medium clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 3-4 pound breast of veal
  • salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Crush the mushrooms using a rolling pin (or use a food processor) until they are ground to "dust." Place the mushroom dust in a bowl. Add the olive oil, chives, red pepper, garlic and lemon juice. Stir to blend the ingredients. Place the veal breast in a roasting pan. Brush the mushroom mixture over the top surface of the meat. Sprinkle with salt. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. Roast for one hour. Remove the cover and raise the oven heat to 425 degrees. Roast for another 15-20 minutes or until the surface is crispy.

Makes 4 servings