Roast Veal with Sour Cherries
See the Recipe. Brooke Slezak

This recipe is an adaptation of one in Please to the Table: The Russian Cookbook (Workman Publishing, 1990) by Anya von Bremzen and John Welchman. Don’t use sweet cherries; they’ll make the dish cloying.

Yield: serves 6-8


  • 3 1⁄2–4- lb. boneless shoulder of veal, rolled and tied
  • 2 cups fruit plus 1 cup canning juice from a 24-oz. jar of pitted sour cherries
  • Juice of 1⁄2 lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 cup Chicken Stock
  • 1⁄3 cups madeira
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • 2 pinches ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground cloves
  • 1 pinch ground cardamom


  1. Preheat oven to 450°. Make 14 incisions, 1⁄2″ deep, all over veal and insert 1 cherry into each incision. Rub veal with lemon juice, then generously season with salt and pepper. Rub butter all over veal and transfer to a large heavy-bottomed roasting pan. Roast veal, basting occasionally, until it begins to brown, 15–20 minutes.
  2. Add stock and cherry juice to roasting pan and scatter remaining cherries around veal. Reduce oven temperature to 325°, loosely cover veal with heavy-duty foil, and continue to roast until meat is tender, about 2 hours.
  3. Transfer veal to a warm serving platter, loosely cover with foil, and set aside to let rest for 10–15 minutes. Meanwhile, pour pan juices and cherries into a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Add madeira, orange zest, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom and boil until sauce has reduced by two-thirds (to about 1 1⁄2 cups) and thickened, about 20 minutes.
  4. Discard twine from meat, then carve veal. Transfer sliced veal to a warm serving platter and spoon cherry sauce around meat.