Thursday is becoming increasingly my favorite day of the week. Blue Eyes has a very long day on Wednesday, so lots of weeks we don’t see each other from bedtime on Tuesday until he gets home from work on Thursday. 😦
In those weeks, Thursday becomes celebration time, and I often want to plan a special dinner for the two of us. Tonight is one of those times. I:m planning the menus around what I found on sale in the supermarket this week: asparagus, veal cutlets, Marsala wine, and mushroom. Plus I am having some staples I happen to have in the pantry and fridge: some Yukon Gold potatoes and heavy cream.
Thus, the menu is Veal Marsala, Potatoes Gratin, Roasted Asparagus, and an Apple Cake I’ve been wanting to try for some time. Now, the recipes:
VEAL MARSALA (This is for two generous grown-up portions)
3/4 pound veal cutlets
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper
2-3 T olive oil
8 oz sliced mushrooms (fresh, not canned)
1 large shallot, minced
3/4 cup Marsala wine
1/4 cup water
2T chopped fresh parsley (can use 1T dried if you don’t have fresh)
Heat the oil in a large skillet, make sure the veal is very thinly sliced. (If it is not really thin, pound each piece between two pieces of plastic wrap with a mallet or even a rolling pin.) Salt and pepper the veal and coat it lightly in the flour. When oil is hot, saute the veal on both sides until light golden brown. Remove the veal to a plate. Add the shallots and mushrooms to the hot pan an saute until the shallots are translucent and the mushrooms have given off their liquid. Add the wine and water, scraping up any delicious brown bits on the bottom of the skillet. Add the butter and the parsley. When the butter is melted and the sauce is deliciously glossy, add the veal back in and make sure the veal is heated through. This entire dish, once you turn on the heat under the oil should not take more than 10-12 minutes.
Pro tip:If you are making this with the potatoes and asparagus, do the veal last.
I saw this recipe on a Jamie Oliver show years ago. I never made those “Au Gratin” potatoes from a box again! This makes enough for two very hungry adults or two modest adults who sneak leftovers later. Double or triple for a large family.
4-5 medium Yukon gold potatoes (or whatever kind you have, really!)
1 clove garlic, minced
8 oz heavy cream
1t dried thyme or 1T fresh if you have it
salt and pepper to taste
2 generous handfuls of shredded cheese, whatever kind you like (I use sharp cheddar).
Slice the potatoes very thinly, use a mandolin if you have one. Put these in a large bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, reserving about half of the cheese for later. Mix it all up–use your hands if you’re like me. Put it in a casserole dish. Make sure the dish isn’t too large, or they will dry out and you won’t get the delicious sauce effect from the cream. Top with the reserved cheese and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 40-50 minutes until bubbly and lightly golden on top.
This is a favorite way to use asparagus, because you get a slight caramelization effect from roasting it that you don’t get from steaming.
salt and pepper
Wash and trim your asparagus, lay it in a single layer in a sheet pan, drizzle with oil, salt and pepper it, roast it for about 15-20 minutes, depending on the heat of the oven. Since I am making this with the potatoes, (at 350) it will take a bit longer. If I were roasting it at a higher temp (400) it would be done in about 10 minutes. You can turn the spears over about halfway through the time, if you want.