Noisettes of veal sweetbreads with mushroom duxelle


West: The Cookbook

  • Yield: 4 Servings


  • 1 lb veal sweetbread hearts
  • 4 carrots, peeled
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 9 oz button mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 10 sprigs thyme, leaves picked off and stem discarded
  • 0.33 cup Madeira
  • 0.33 cup whipping cream
  • 8 tsp cold unsalted butter
  • 3 pods cardamom
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ lemon
  • Deep-fried parsley for garnish
How to Make It
  1. Veal sweetbreads, when roasted, deliver a crunchy exterior and a creamy smooth but firm interior. If possible, ask your butcher for veal sweetbread hearts, as these are the best, but you can use the entire veal sweetbread or lamb sweetbreads as well.
  2. Soak
  3. Sweetbreads for 2 hours in cold water. Extract them from the water, then place them in a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Remove from the water and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or until cold, then peel off the fine membrane. Break into twelve equal pieces.
  4. Cut the carrots into sticks 2 inches long and ¼ inch square; set aside the carrot trimmings. Bring a small pot of water to a boil. Add carrot sticks and blanch for 2 minutes, then drain and plunge them into an ice bath to refresh.
  5. In a small saute pan, heat 2 tsp of the olive oil on medium heat. Add the garlic and half of the onion, and sweat for 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and thyme, and cook until all excess moisture has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Deglaze with Madeira and continue to cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until almost all of the liquid has evaporated. Pour in cream and heat again until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Season this mushroom duxelle with salt and pepper.
  6. Finely cut the reserved carrot trimmings. In a small saute pan, heat 2 tsp of the olive oil and 4 tsp of the butter on medium heat. Add the remaining half of the onion and sweat for 2 to 3 minutes. Add carrot trimmings and cardamom, then cover with chicken stock and cook for 12 to 15 minutes until carrot is soft. Puree this mixture in a blender, then strain the liquid through a fine sieve into a small saucepan. Add orange juice. Heat this liquid on medium heat until the sauce is reduced to the consistency of cream, about 5 minutes. Whisk in 2 tsp of cold butter. Season this sauce with salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice.
  7. Heat the remaining 2 tsp of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saute pan on high heat. Season sweetbreads with salt and pepper, then add them to the pan. Sear for r to 2 minutes, then add the remaining 2 tsp of butter and heat it until it foams. Continue cooking sweetbreads until golden. Season with salt and pepper and drain on paper towels.

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