Roast Veal with Sour Cherries

  • Serves

    serves 6-8


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.


  • 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


Step 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.

Step 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.

Step 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.

Step 4

Discard twine from meat, then carve veal. Transfer sliced veal to a warm serving platter and spoon cherry sauce around meat.

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