Vintage Recipes

Cooking Veal

Veal is the meat obtained from a young calf killed when six to eight weeks old. Veal from a younger animal is very unwholesome, and is liable to provoke serious gastric disturbances. Veal contains a much smaller percentage of fat than beef or mutton, is less nutritious, and (though from a young creature) more difficult of digestion. Like lamb, it is not improved by long hanging, but should be eaten soon after killing and dressing. It should always be remembered that the flesh of young animals does not keep fresh as long as that of older ones.

Veal is divided in same manner as lamb, into fore and hind quarters. The fore quarter is subdivided into breast, shoulder, and neck; the hind quarter into loin, leg, and knuckle. Cutlets, fillets (cushion), and fricandeau are cut from the thick part of leg.

Good veal may be known by its pinkish colored flesh and white fat; when the flesh lacks color, it has been taken from a creature which was too young to kill for food, or, if of the right age, was bled before killing. Veal may be obtained throughout the year, but is in season during the spring. Veal should be thoroughly cooked; being deficient in fat and having but little flavor, pork or butter should be added while cooking, and more seasoning is required than for other meats.

Although veal is obtained from a young creature, it requires long cooking; it is usually sauteed, and then cooked in a sauce at low temperature for a long time. A knuckle of veal is often used for making white soup stock.


Cut four pounds of veal into strips three or four inches long and about one inch thick. Peel twelve large potatoes; cut them into slices one inch thick. Put a layer of veal in the bottom of the kettle, and sprinkle salt and a very little pepper over it; then put a layer of potatoes; then a layer of veal, seasoned as before, and so on until all the veal is used. Over the last layer of veal put a layer of salt pork, cut in slices; cover with potatoes; pour in water until it rises an inch over the whole; cover close; heat fifteen minutes; simmer one hour.

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