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Twice-Braised Veal with Black Cardamom and Preserved Lemon

Twice-Braised Veal with Black Cardamom and Preserved Lemon

Yield: 12 servings.

7 lb. veal shank cross cuts, cut 1 1/2" thick (IMPS/NAMP 1357 or 1312), about 12
2 Tbsp. kosher salt 1 tsp. ground white pepper
1/3 cup canola oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
1 1/2 cups chopped parsnips
3 1/2 cups chopped leeks
1 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1/3 cup chopped fresh ginger
1 garlic bulb, cut horizontally in half
1 orange, cut into quarters
1 bunch fresh parsley
5 fresh thyme sprigs
1 tsp. whole black peppercorns
1 tsp. whole coriander seeds
7 whole black cardamom pods, crushed
1 fresh bay leaf
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup dry red wine
3 qt. veal stock

1 small, thin-skinned lemon, thinly sliced
1 cup water
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. white wine vinegar

For braised veal: Season veal shanks with salt and white pepper. Heat oil in large roasting pan; add veal shanks; brown on both sides. Remove shanks from pan. Set aside.

Add onions, parsnips, leeks, carrots, shallots, ginger, orange, parsley, thyme, peppercorns, coriander, cardamom and bay leaf to roasting pan. Sautè until vegetables are golden brown.

Deglaze pan with white wine and red wine. Reduce wine by half. Add stock and veal shanks. Cover shanks with parchment paper. Braise in 325°F oven 1 1/2-2 hours, or until shanks are fork-tender.

Remove shanks from pan. Set aside to cool slightly. Pull meat from bones and strain braising liquid. Combine strained liquid and meat in roasting pan. Braise, uncovered, in 325°F oven for 2 hours. Remove meat from pan; shred. Divide shredded meat evenly among 12 4-oz. ramekins. Refrigerate, covered, until ready to serve. Reserve 2 cups braising liquid. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Blanch lemon slices briefly in boiling water; rinse under cold water and remove seeds. Heat water, sugar and vinegar in heavy medium saucepan until sugar has dissolved. Add lemon slices; cover. Bake in 300°F oven for 4 hours. Uncover; cool. Strain and discard liquid. Lightly chop lemon. Set aside.

Per order: Moisten meat in ramekin with 1/2-1 oz. reserved braising liquid. Heat ramekin, covered, in 350°F oven until warm and internal temperature reaches 140°F. Top with 1 tsp. preserved lemon.

Chef Michael Tsonton, Eli's Steakhouse, Chicago.