Vitello Tonné literally looks like it came out of a Good Housekeeping magazine from the 1950’s, same hue of the dish that those old grainy photographs had. It is something that when I first think about it, the mixture of ingredients, with the surf and the turf, my stomach churns a little…and yet, it is truly delicious and considered a delicacy in Italy. I was telling my husband, while dining on our cold veal smothered in a tuna sauce, that had it not been the first meal that I had at his mother’s house, a situation which forced me to be polite and to eat everything on my plate, and then some, I probably would have never even tried vitello tonné, and I honestly would have been missing out.
Now I asked my butcher for veal, but the color and the texture of it did not indicate veal, but more like a mature cow. I have to say I am surprised because he was giving advice on how to make the sauce, cooking time and even offered to slice the meat once it was cooked and cooled. I may have needed to hear him out on the cooking time (30 minutes), instead of following the Silver Spoon (2 hours, I let it simmer for one hour and a half), the meat was a little tough. Luckily my tonné sauce was delicious, and the Silver Spoon is to thank for that, using hard cooked egg yolks instead of commercial mayonnaise. I also have to say that with all of the leftovers, it was even better the second day than the first and I will be sure to make it one day ahead of time la prossima volta.
- 1¾-pound veal round
- 1 carrot
- 1 onion
- 1 celery stalk
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
for the sauce
- 2 7-ounce cans of tuna in oil, drained
- 6 canned anchovy filets in oil, drained
- 4 tbsp capers, drained and rinsed
- 4 hard-cooked egg yolks
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- juice of 2 lemons, strained
Tie the veal neatly with kitchen string. Bring a pan of salted water to a boil and add the veal, carrot, onion, celery, vinegar and olive oil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 2 hours (or until cooked through) until the meat is tender. Remove the pan from the heat and let the veal cool in the stock.
For the sauce, put the tuna, anchovy filets, capers and egg yolks through a grinder or process in a food processor. Stir in the olive oil, 2-3 tbsp of the stock and the lemon juice. Untie the meat, carve into slices and place on a serving dish. Spoon the sauce over the slices and leave for a few hours for the flavors to mingle before serving.
I doubled the recipe for the sauce, you may end up with too much, but the original recipe called for too little for the amount of meat that you end up with.
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