Rôti de veau aux petits légumes

Tender veal served cold with tarragon mayonnaise and seasonal veggies — for example, asparagus, green beans and fresh peas in early summer — makes a delightful supper that can be prepared in advance for easy serving. Or you can serve the roast hot, surrounded by veggies and drizzled with succulent sauce. Either way, break open a bottle of wine, slice up some crusty bread, bring the roast to the table and prepare for applause.

Rôti de veau aux petits légumes / Veal roast with seasonal veggies

I served this roast the other night when a friend visiting from London came over for dinner. She loved it, all the more so because veal is harder to come by in Britain than in France. As a starter, we had smoked salmon tidbits and white-tipped radishes with salt — easy peasy — and for dessert, I made a rhubarb compote.

The star of this dish, when served cold, is the tarragon mayonnaise — which is, of course, homemade. Don’t let that scare you. I generally make homemade mayonnaise by hand using a bowl and spoon, but in this recipe the mayo is made in a blender for easier chopping of the fresh tarragon leaves. It takes just five minutes.

Roasting the veal is child’s play, and the veggies can be steamed or, depending on season, roasted alongside the meat. Later into the summer I might choose eggplant, tomatoes and zucchini, while in winter you could roast the veal with, say, potatoes, carrots and red onion, or with cauliflower, pumpkin and leeks.

Whether to serve the meat cold or hot is a matter of taste and the weather. When serving it hot, you skip the mayo and instead use the roasting juices to make a flavorful sauce that is drizzled over the veggies and the meat.

If you have leftovers, all the better. The next day’s lunch is ready.

Happy cooking.

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