Because of its soothing effect, stews are probably one of my favorite comfort food. That’s why the best way to feel nostalgic of the happiest moments of my childhood is for me to make a stew using some of my mother’s recipes by adding my own personal twist.
The stew recipe I will be sharing today is my veal stew with brandy. It’s a simple yet delicious recipe with very few ingredients because, sometimes, less is better. My mother’s recipe is made with beef, but I chose to use veal because I like the tenderness and the fine texture of the veal better.
Originally, I used to make this recipe with Rosé wine. However, since I was in shortage of Rosé wine in my small wine cellar (If I can call it a cellar lol), I thought to myself that it could be clever to substitute Rosé wine with French brandy. Brandy and veal are usually a winning combination, so I wouldn’t really say that I was taking a huge risk with this alcohol change. And as I expected, the result with brandy was very satisfying.
Prep: 30 min Cook: 50-60 min 6-8 Servings
1 kg of Veal; cut in cubes
½ cup of French brandy
2 cups of Veal fond, low in sodium
¼ cup of crushed tomatoes
1 Onion, finely diced
6 cloves of Garlic, finely minced
5 Carrots, roughly diced
1. In a mixing bowl, add salt and pepper to the cubes of veal. Then coat each piece of veal with flour.
2. In a pressure cooker (you can also use a Dutch or French oven), over medium heat, drizzle two to three tablespoons of olive oil and brown for 1-2 minutes the cubes of veal, previously coated with flour. Make sure to not overcrowd the pot and go by batch if necessary. I went for nine (9) pieces of meat per batch.
3. Once all the pieces of meat have been nicely browned, remove them from the pot and set them aside for later.
4. In the same pot, sauté the onions and garlic for 2 minutes or until the onions turn tender and translucent. Pour in the brandy and stir. Add the carrots and the browned pieces of meat and stir. Then add the crushed tomatoes.
5. Pour in 2 cups of veal fond and ½ cup of water and stir. Adjust the seasoning and for some heat I added one teaspoon of chili flakes but it’s totally optional. Put the lid on and let cook, over low-medium heat, for 50 minutes or until the sauce has thickened to a stew consistency. Readjust the seasoning again if necessary and turn off the heat.
Serve the stew in a serving bowl and garnish with chopped parsley.
This stew goes well with gnocchi, rice or bread. Personally, I prefer to pair this stew with sautéed gnocchi.
You can use any type of brandy for this recipe; I just preferred using French brandy.