Veal & Onions Two Easy Ways

Even if I’m not a big meat eater, I do like to prepare some meat from time to time. For that reason, when I do, I’d like it good.

This recipe was passed onto me by my sister, and it worked well for both of us.

With a nice piece of veal loin (as big as the number of guests around the table), I’ll cook it on white wine, for about 2 hrs; with this dish I also make caramelized small onions. The two dishes go very well together. They are elegant and light.

In the eventuality of leftovers, the veal lends itself very well for the famous “vitello tonnato,” particularly in summertime (recipe will follow).

Whole Foods sells the small onions. I believe they are called “White Pearl Onions.” They need to be manually peeled, whether in Italy they are sold already peeled, and they are slightly bigger.

However the need, they are worth the effort. I do not use regular size onions sliced because my son refused to eat them; he said they look like worms! 😃


  • 1 3- to 3 1/2-pound veal loin
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 Bay Leaves

In a small roasting pan or a 12-inch skillet with a lid, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic cloves and lightly brown, about 1 to 2 minutes.

Brown the veal in the pan, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Season with the salt and pepper. Add the wine and rosemary, and the bay leaves; reduce heat to low, and cover.

Simmer the veal for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or until fork tender, turning 2 or 3 times during cooking. If the veal starts to stick, add 2 tablespoons of water and continue cooking.

Transfer the veal to a cutting board. Save the pan juices.

Slice the veal. Serve hot or warm, with the pan juices spooned over the meat.

Caramelized Onions

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 bag of white pearl onions
  • 1 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Heat oil in a large frypan over low heat. Add the onions and a good pinch of salt and cook very slowly for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent them from catching.

Don’t be tempted to turn the heat up, as you don’t want the onions to burn.

When onions are softened and tinged golden, add sugar and balsamic – this will start the caramelisation process.

Cook onion over low heat for a further 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sticky and caramelised.

Use immediately, or store in the fridge, in a sterilised jar or plastic container, and use when required.

I love the aroma of Bay Leaves with my roasting. This aromatic leaf is commonly used in cooking in Italy. It can be whole or dried. It comes from the Bay laurel plant. Fresh or dried bay leaves are used in cooking for their distinctive flavour and fragrance. The leaves should be removed from the cooked food before eating.

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I lived the most part of my life in Washington DC, now in Italy getting to know again my country. Plenty of surprises, for good and bad, and lots of nostalgia for DC.

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