Recipe of the Week: Veal Involtini
Even a simple scaloppini can be transform into a delectable dish by simply adding a slice of prosciutto and a little stuffing. The original idea was simple, how to feed a large crowd with only a few pieces of meat. With a little ingenuity the recipe was created and it was a success. Today involtini are a favorite dish served at many Italian restaurants, a long way from its humble origin. I’m not bragging but my version is one of the best – don’t take my word for it, try it for yourself. Serves eight. (Chef’s tip: The best cut of veal for scaloppini comes from the boneless meat roast that comes from the leg, cut thin and gently pound with a flat mallet. Make sure to buy milk-fed veal, the meat should be pink in color.)
8 veal thin scaloppini, cut from the leg
4 thin slices prosciutto, cut in half
2 cups fine fresh bread crumbs
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/2 cup whole milk, more or less as needed
2 cups fresh baby spinach, washed, dry and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh chives, chopped
2 large eggs
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup dry white wine (chablis, chardonnay or pinot grigio)
1 cup veal stock, defatted
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Preheat the oven to 400F. Gently pound scaloppini between two sheets of plastic wrap with flat side of a meat pounder until about 1/4 inch thick.
Stir together in a medium bowl bread crumbs, pine nuts, milk, eggs, spinach, garlic, cheese, parsley, chive, salt and pepper. Mixture should be moist, but not wet.
Top each scaloppini with half a slice of prosciutto and 1/4 cup of the breadcrumb mixture. Roll up scaloppini around the filling, starting from the short side. Secure with a toothpick. Transfer to a plate.
Heat olive oil in a large 12-14 inch saut pan. Sear the prepare involtini, until light golden brown on both sides. Add wine and deglaze the pan, add veal stock and bring it to a boil. Cook at high heat for 10 minutes until sauce is reduced. Remove the involtini from the pan and place on a baking dish. Stir butter into the sauce and reduce while stirring for another five minutes. Adjust the seasoning. Pour the prepare sauce on top of the involtini. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil.
Bake for 20 minutes or until the center of the involtini reaches 165F on an instant thermometer. Remove from the oven and serve at once.