One of my favorite Italian restaurants is Valbella, located in the meatpacking district of Manhattan. You walk down the cobblestones street and immediately feel like you are in Europe, not New York City. For special occasions my dad would take my family and some friends for dinner. One of my favorite dishes at the restaurant is a thinly pounded out veal chop served still on the bone. It’s breaded and lightly pan-fried so that it’s crispy on the outside and still juicy and topped with a light arugula salad. We always start with some burrata and other appetizers followed by an assortment of pasta’s then the veal. It’s one of those meals that you fast all day in preparation for. After dinner you can walk off the meal a bit on the High Line.
For the veal:
4 veal chops, bone in, pounded out very thin, about ¼-inch thick
Freshly ground pepper
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs
2 cups plain breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon dried parsley
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried basil
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Extra-virgin olive oil, as needed, for frying
For the salad:
3 (packed) cups arugula
1 tablespoon balsamic
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
Lemon wedges, for serving
For the veal:
Preheat the oven to 200º.
Season the veal chops with salt and pepper on both sides.
To bread the veal set up three separate large shallow bowls. Place the flour in the first bowl. In the second bowl beat the eggs. In the third bowl combine the breadcrumbs, parsley, oregano, basil, onion powder and garlic powder.
Heat a large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan in a thin layer.
Working one veal chop at a time, dredge the veal on both sides in the flour mixture then the egg mixture. Gently press the veal chop into the breadcrumb mixture so that it is lightly coated on both sides.
Add one of the veal chops to the hot oil and pan-fry until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn the veal chop and continue to cook until golden brown and cooked through, about an additional 3 minutes. Transfer the veal chop to a baking sheet and warm in the oven. Repeat with the remaining veal chops.
For the arugula salad:
In a medium mixing bowl toss the arugula with the balsamic, olive oil and tomatoes.
To serve: Place a veal chop on each plate, and top with a handful of the arugula salad. Serve with a lemon wedge on the side.