Monday, December 15, 2008

Veal Scallopini with Brown Butter and Capers

After a couple of dates, a.k.a visits to hell, I need a break.

A break consists of re-enacting my dates with dolls. Then I raid my mother's bathroom to locate her stash of Prozac. (Not really, she lives in Colorado.) Then I cook.

This veal dish is literally perfect. Look, I'm sorry about the baby cows, really I am. Think of it this way: They were put out of their misery early in life. It's a euthanasia thing. Merciful. They suffered for a shorter duration then the old cows. By eating veal you're really doing cows a favor. In fact, cows should thank me for eating their little babies.

Here's the thing:

I used to live near a cow farm (or whatever you call them) in Colorado. Cows do NOT have a good life. (At least these ones didn't). They stand in mud and excrement all day. That's it. The babies are forcibly weaned from their mothers by the farmers (wardens). They place each calf into these white plastic orbs so the mama cows can't reach them. This goes on for weeks. One calf per plastic orb is the rule (calf solitary confinement). You can't imagine the cruelty of it, until you see it.

I was driving past the farm one day and couldn't believe my eyes. I thought "Aliens" had landed on earth and laid giant white alien eggs (orbs).

The sound of the calf's panicked high pitched mooing, "Ma ma. I'm in an orb. Help me." combined with the mothers low-pitched monotone moo"My darling child, where are you?" was deafening.

I pulled my car to the side of the road. I tip toed through the mud to reach one of the orbs. I reached in with my hand (there is a little window) to pet a calf head. "There, there little fella. It'll be all right" I said.

The calf promptly latched onto my arm in a cow mouth death grip, and promptly began

I don't know if you've ever had a enormous cow tongue suckle your arm. Have you? It's like feeling the 1000 lbs of suction you WISH your Hoover had. Talk about saliva. It was DISGUSTING.

I was still in college at the time and had not yet grown out of my obsession. It was the one thing I lived for...what I plotted at each night. Namely, how to scare my baby sister.

I drove home, picked her up and brought her back to the orbs. "What are they doing in the orbs" she innocently inquired. "Oh, they're just....camping." I replied. "Go ahead, pet one. They're really friendly." I encouraged.

She did, she screeeeeeamed and I laughhhhhhhhhed.

But ladies and gentlemen, that was nothing. The methods I employed to frighten my baby sister bordered on the absurd. One night, I sat outside her bedroom window (in the freezing snow). I waited for ages, that's how dedicated I was. I made scratching noises on her window after leaving a note in her bedroom. The note said, "This is the Zodiac killer. I am outside your window. Prepare to die."

Come to think of it, my baby sister is on Prozac now. My other sister too. Hey, my mother is on Prozac. I'm the only one who isn't on Prozac.

You're not gonna invite me over for dinner now, are you? That's ok. I'm having veal tonight.

The secret to this recipe is the combination of red wine vinegar and browned butter. Savory and Tangy is akin to Salty and Sweet....a winning combo.

Cast if Characters:
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup flour
1 lb thin veal scallopini (less than 1/4 inch thick). Pound the hell out of it to make it thin.
1/2 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons drained capers
2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Heat a 12-inch heavy skillet until hot, add oil and heat until it shimmers.
Meanwhile, drink some wine. Then stir together flour, 1 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper, then pat veal dry and dredge in flour, knocking off excess. Really knock off the excess, it's important.

Cook veal in 2 batches, turning once, until browned and just cooked through, 2 minutes per batch (or less). Don't overcook it. Don't do it. In fact, stop NOWwwwww. (faints)

Discard oil from skillet, then add butter and cook over medium heat until browned and fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. You gotta move fast, man.

Stir in vinegar, capers, and 1/4 tsp of salt and pepper. Return veal to heat through, then sprinkle with fresh parsley

That's it. Serve with Fettuccine Alfredo (and maybe one of those tomatoes from yesterday) and yer good. Make it tonight. It's easy and surprisingly delicious. Bristol Farms has the best Veal.

This post is dedicated to the baby cows that died to feed Charmaine. By the way, they are not tortured anymore, Fancy. Laws were enacted to improve their living conditions years ago (at least in the U.S.). That is why the color of the flesh is no longer a whitish pink, rather a dark pink. They are no longer immobilized. They get to run around and play fun cow games. And for the record, I stopped eating Veal for years until this law was enacted. I'm not a complete monster. I just date them.


Comedy Goddess said...

After some of the guys you have dated, I wouldn't blame you for becoming a professional butcher.

Michelle J said...

Ok girlie crush i think i may have to taste some baby cow!! I am not sure though! What can happen to me?? Will i become a carnivore??? I am not sure if i can handle that! Would you help me if i become a meat eating monster??? What if i start eating raw meats?? Like just using my hands and shoving it into my mouth as if i was a starving child in china!!!??? Then what Charmaine??? Do you see what you are doing here my girlie crush?? Can you understand the severity of the situation you created???

Can you?? Well....i'm waiting!!!

Oh, can you recommend a good wine to go with the veal?? You know, i need to make it a complete meal, all the food groups must be involved!!!

I love you girl crush!!!

Ann's Rants said...

For the love of God, don't let Braja see this post!!!!

Charmaine said...

Anns Rants,

OMG. I didn't even THINK of that. Ahhhhhhh

Braja- I wasn't really eating a God. I trying to rescue them from the bad people...

Dear God,
Please let Braja forget to read my blog today.

Response: Moooooo

Hedgie said...


Right back atcha.

Ann's Rants said...

No SERIOUSLY, did you see her post today? What are the odds??

Irish Gumbo said...

Oh, man, I hadn't thought about veal in years, but after that writeup...I may have to reconsider.

Charmaine: It took me a while, but I finally have it together - your award for winning the Sunday Contest!

WooHoo! You can pick it up at Irish Gumbo. It's up in the upper right hand corner, yours for the downloading. May it bring you great joy! Or at least a laugh!

Michele said...

The Boys would go for this dish. Me; not so much. Thank you for rescuing the baby cows. I think.

Heather said...

That is why I went vegetarian 18 years ago! I have had a cow lick me on the arm, it was stinky for about 2 hours until I could wash it.

SSP said...

this explains Briana's odd obsession with making sure the windows in our 4th floor dorm room were closed and locked every, with sisters like you, who needs mothers!? LOL

Simplicity said...

I think I need Prozac now! Thank goodness you weren't my sister because I'd be in a mental institution! My older sister was bad enough. She collected spiders in a jar and released them on me one night!!!

LL said...

Whoa... that picture looks good enough to eat, and the veal doesn't look bad either. *rimshot*

Wha? Don't blame me... Crotchety sent me over here. ;)

Shakespeare's Housekeeper said...

Hello Charmaine!
Veal dish looks lovely- i'm not veggie, but hubbie is, so we only have meat in the house once in a blue moon.
Although i do have a friend whose hubby is also veggie, and me and her go out once a month on a meat fest.Steak till it comes out of our ears!
I did laugh about the sucking calfs..
i remember being on my uncles farm when i was a little sprouty, and letting the cows suck my fingers (uggh..Shudder. Or should that be udder..?)
My uncle told me they liked to suckle as they need the salt.
Not sure whether this is right..i might just have been made to do it for entertainment value.
Another fab blog- you do make me laugh!
SH xx

Da Old Man said...

Thanks for saving the baby cows. For your unselfish heroic act, I've given you an award. You are welcome to share it with as many friends as you wish, or just keep it to slap the bad dates.
Stop by the blog to pick it up.

Charmaine said...

Goddess- Great Idea.

Michelle - Yo.

Anns Rants - I'm too scared to
look at Brajas post. What did she say? I know it's about cows.

Irish - thanks for the award. hee hee. Shucks. I never win anything.

Hedgie- Don't take that tone of moo with me.

Charmaine said...

Michele-You're welcome

Heather-That cow lick was better then some of the kisses I've had lately

SSP-Yes, I drove my baby sis into a pit of madness

LL-Are you a stand-up comdedian?

Shakespeare- Thank God. I thought I was the olnly one

Da Old Man - Finally, someone who really understands me.

Hedgie said...

"Neigh," I say, "neigh."

LL said...

No... usually I sit down while typing. And I'm hoping "comdedian" is just a typo, otherwise... I'm completely lost in this conversation... :P

Briana said...

Charmaine, you might now understand why I carried your luggage when you attempted to run away from home. Just wanted to help out - and get a full night of sleep :) said...

A story behind a recipe?

Never seen anyone write one like this.