Since ancient times, veal has been a common meat used in both Italian and French cuisine. Classic Italian meals include "cotoletta" while French cuisine dishes include fried escalopes, fried veal Grenadines, stuffed veal and roasts. Since veal is lower in fat than many other meats, you must be careful not too overcook your veal because it can become too tough. Cut from a veal loin roast, the veal chop is the equivalent of a T-bone steak. They can be eaten either braised or pan-fried and herbs such as rosemary, tarragon, thyme and oregano will complement the meat's flavours perfectly
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Rosemary has a very distinctive and strong flavour that can be used either as a subtle accent or as a bold feature in any meal. Its flavour can be harmonised to a variety of meat but is particularly brought out when combined with meats. Both the flowers and leaves of rosemary can be used for garnishing and cooking of veal chops. Simply crush, chop or mince the spiky leaves before sprinkling over or rubbing into your veal chops.
Tarragon's anise-like character is well suited to a variety of cuisine. Use sparingly because tarragon's flavour can be very dominating and compete with other herbs. Use the leaves to make a sauce that will complement your veal chops such as Béarnaise, or as a garnish to present your meal. Don't cook tarragon for too long as it will bring out its bitterness. For maximum flavour, add tarragon only during the last 15 minutes if you are cooking your veal chops as part of a stew.
Oregano is most popular in Italian and Greek dishes although unlike most other Italian herbs it also combines well with spicy foods. This herb is aromatic, warm and has a slightly bitter taste which varies in intensity, depending on the freshness of the herb. High quality oregano can be strong enough to almost numb the tongue. Oregano's flavour comes from its leaves and can often be more flavourful when dried than fresh. Add oregano to your veal chops for a Mediterranean feel.
Thyme has a very delicate taste with a slight clove aftertaste. It is considered as one of the finest herbs in French cuisine. You can use both the leaves and sprigs in your recipes. Use thyme as you are cooking your veal, or to complement it by mixing it in your sauce or gravy. It will give your veal chops flavour reminiscent of French cuisine. Thyme flavours also work very well when mixed in with lemon, garlic, and basil. For an added twist, try flavoured varieties such as lemon thyme.
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