Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Veal Scallopini With Mushrooms And A Mustard Cream Sauce

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A couple of nights ago I got a call from my friend Silvia saying she had just made my Sauteed Scallops in Mustard Sauce and loved them, particularly the sauce.  Could she use the same sauce on something else? This, if you don't know her, is a major event.  At last count I think she makes about three or four of my recipes and never tires out.  Sometimes I call her to get one of those recipes that are now long gone from my repertoire.  Over the years, as she gains more and more confidence in her cooking,  she gives them her spin  Every so often she tells me she is going to take cooking lessons.  Never happens. One thing about Silvia, though, she loves her food!

When she calls with such enthusiasm I jump at the chance to throw her a line and see if I can finally hook her into cooking more often.   Last night I actually found a recipe that I thought I could get her to try.  Just so she would branch out  and give the old stuff a rest.

Veal in a mustard cream sauce is a classic.  So is wild rabbit,  for that matter.  But I know the latter would never fly. When I read the recipe I thought either the mustard or the tarragon had to go;  but I was wrong.  Everything works here and the recipe is perfect for a quick Sunday dinner like we had last night or a dinner party for six.  If you get all your prep stuff done ahead of time, it comes together in less than 10 minutes.  Accompany, as suggested, with orzo or yellow rice as an alternative.  At this time of the year, the peach cobbler I served for dessert would be perfection!

I am a sucker for veal as I don't always find it where I live now.  When I do, I stock up and save some in the freezer.  Fresh scallops is another luxury here, but I never buy them because I can always smell them and I never buy fish I can smell.  Every time I go to New York  one of the first things I do is walk down to my old fish market on the Upper East Side and,  if they are in season, stock up on my favorite bay scallops. (You can never smell a thing in that place.  They might as well be selling stationary).  Then I go back to Silvia's apartment and cook them in a mustard sauce with white rice, accompanied by a dry Muscadet from Sherry- Lehman.   Nirvana!

 For the recipe click below.

Although it doesn't tell you to do so, pound the veal a bit and dry the scallops in paper towels.   I always like to coat them with a very thin coating of flour right before I add them to the butter to help them brown.  Use fresh tarragon, it's milder; or use half the amount if you are using dried.  Try cooking with the same wine you are serving for dinner.  And use all of the cream, it needs it.  I only used half as, supposedly, we are "on regime" and wished I had used the full cup.  The recipe calls for coarse grained Dijon.  I used regular and felt it went better.

10/14 Made these last night pounded thin and this time used the coarse grained Dijon.  It was out of this world! you might also need to use another 1 tb butter making it 4TB before you add the mushrooms. Served with spaghetti drizzled with a little olive oil and freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Yield: Makes 6 servings


1 1/4 pounds veal scallops, about 1/8 inch thick
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
1/4 cup chopped shallots
8 ounces assorted wild mushrooms (such as oyster and stemmed shiitake), sliced or quartered
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons coarse-grained Dijon mustard


Sprinkle veal on both sides with salt and pepper. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook veal until golden, about 20 seconds per side. Transfer to plate. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in same skillet. Add shallots; sauté 30 seconds. Add mushrooms; sauté until brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in tarragon. Add wine; cook over high heat until almost all liquid evaporates, stirring to scrape up browned bits, about 2 minutes. Add cream; boil until reduced by 1/4, about 1 minute. Stir in mustard. Using tongs, return veal to pan; simmer until heated through. Divide veal and sauce among 6 plates and serve.

Adapted from
Veal Scallops with Wild Mushroom, Mustard, and Tarragon Sauce Bon Appétit | November 2003


  1. oh, please post me a generous helping of that peach cobbler. yummmmm.

  2. I love veal scallopini, so this looks like a winner, and I shall try it once we return from our travels.

    We are going to the Tsukiji in Tokyo next week, so I will report back on the stationery shop smell!

  3. Looks yummy. Here on the prairie, where we raise cows -- we raise COWS! BIG ONES! Veal is almost impossible to find!

    If I do, this is one of the first recipes that I'll try!

  4. Joseph,

    yummy and quick to make. The blackberry one is fab also.

    Hi column,

    One gets the freshest fish in NYC. Also the most expensive but Id rather pay $$ for fresh than buy what we get here/ Safe trip.


    Look for it at Costco. I always find some there. good price.

  5. "They might as well be selling stationery..."
    Priceless, Julieta.
    Beautiful post, one of your very best!

  6. Toby,

    You just made my day. Thank you.

  7. Very beautiful recipe! I happen to have 2 pounds of unusually beautiful veal stew meat in the freezer, so tomorrow I'm going to modify your recipe and make a sort of blanquette de veau with mustard. (The temperature here in New Hampshire will plunge to 68 from today's 80 when a rather violent front passes through, so we will feel like cooking and appreciate some cool weather food. Will let you know how it turns out!

  8. This looks like a fabulous recipe, and one that I must add to my repetoire. Reminiscent of le pain a la moutarde, one of my autumnal favorites. Reggie

  9. Mary,

    Check the recipe for a Winter Veal Stew and you won't have to change a thing. It's a favorite around here.

  10. Reggie,

    Welcome back to the blogosphere! I have never had the pain a la moutarde. You must grace me with the recipe!

  11. Apologies for the delay in getting back to you! My Veal stew in mustard sauce was wonderful. My husband and I devoured it!

    Thank you so much for the pointer to the winter veal stew. I look forward to making it. Next project is Williams-Sonoma's Roman Style meatballs (which I highly recommend) with YOUR semolina gnocchi, which I find much friendlier than theirs.

  12. Glad to know you liked it. And thanks for letting me know. Comments and reviews are much appreciated.

  13. Just made this and had it for supper. Made a couple of adjustments - used thinly sliced and pounded pork instead of veal. The one time I had a recipe in mind, there was no veal scallopini at the butchers. I also used yoghurt instead of cream, and we served with linguine. It was excellent. Will try it with veal, but I can recommend the pork too.

  14. Made this with veal last night and it was excellent. Pork will do too, however. Next going to try beef Stroganoff; the recipes seem very similar.


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