Veal bake with orange and basil

    2 hours 25 minutes

    It's not often that veal is used in slow-baked dishes but, as this meal shows, slow-baked veal is tender and delicious. It takes much less cooking than beef so is a good choice when you don't have hours to wait for a casserole to cook.

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    Serves: 4 

    • 2 tsp olive oil
    • 500g lean veal, cut into bite-sized cubes
    • 1 tbsp plain flour
    • 1 large onion, finely chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
    • 250g button mushrooms, quartered
    • 1 cup canned no-salt-added chopped tomatoes
    • 1 tsp grated orange zest
    • 1/2 cup orange juice
    • 1 cup frozen peas
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
    • mashed potatoes (optional)

    Preparation:20min  ›  Cook:2hours5min  ›  Ready in:2hours25min 

    1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole dish over a medium heat. Dredge the veal in the flour, shaking off any excess. Add the veal to the casserole dish in small batches and fry for 4 minutes. Remove each batch from the dish when cooked and allow the casserole dish to reheat before frying the next batch. Transfer the veal to a plate.
    2. Add the onion and garlic to the casserole dish and cook for 3 minutes or until the onion is crisp but tender. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes or until they release their juices.
    3. Add the tomatoes and their juice, the orange zest and orange juice to the casserole, then cover and bake for 45 minutes or until the veal is tender.
    4. Stir in the peas and basil and cook for a further 5 minutes or until the peas are heated through. Serve with mashed potatoes, if you like.

    Some more ideas…

    Because veal is so lean, it requires careful cooking to keep it from becoming tough. But there's no need for you to slather veal with fat to maintain its tenderness and delicate texture – just use moderate heat, and never overcook it. * Does chopping onions make you cry? Blame it on the sulphuric compounds in the vegetable. One remedy is to leave the root end intact; this is where the compounds are concentrated. Another option is to freeze the onion for 20 minutes before cutting, to inhibit the chemical release.

    Health points

    Veal is an excellent low-fat source of protein, and also supplies B vitamins and zinc. While it has less iron than beef, it is still a good source of this important mineral.

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