What is a Veal Blade Steak? A Comprehensive Guide

Veal blade steak is an underrated and overlooked cut of meat that deserves more attention With proper preparation, this cut can be transformed into a tender, juicy, and flavorful dish. But what exactly is a veal blade steak? Where does it come from and how do you cook it? This comprehensive guide will tell you everything you need to know about this unique and tasty cut of veal

What Part of the Veal Does Blade Steak Come From?

The veal blade steak is cut from the shoulder of young calves that are less than 20 weeks old More specifically, it comes from the top blade roast, which is located above the shoulder blade of the animal.

The meat that makes up the blade steak originates from the muscles in the shoulder region. In the middle of the blade runs a sinew or connective tissue that needs to be properly cooked to become tender. When prepared correctly, this sinew transforms into a soft and delicious addition to the steak.

Why Choose Veal Blade Steak?

There are several good reasons to give veal blade steak a try:

  • Flavor – Veal has a mild and delicate flavor that is perfect for soaking up spices, herbs, and bold marinades. The fat marbling in the blade steak enhances the flavor and moisture.

  • Affordable – Compared to premium cuts like ribeye or tenderloin, veal blade steak is budget-friendly without compromising on eating enjoyment.

  • Nutritious – Veal is a lean source of protein that contains important nutrients like iron, zinc, and B vitamins. The blade steak provides these health benefits.

  • Tender and Juicy – When cooked properly, the blade becomes fall-apart tender while remaining succulent and juicy. The connective tissue melts into gelatin to provide a rich mouthfeel.

  • Versatile – This cut can be prepared using a variety of cooking methods from braising to grilling to get fantastic results. It’s a flexible ingredient for many dishes.

For meat-lovers looking for an affordable, flavorful, and interesting cut of meat, veal blade steak ticks all the boxes. Don’t knock it until you try it!

Where to Buy Veal Blade Steak?

You may need to visit a specialty butcher shop to find veal blade steak. Due to its obscurity, it can be difficult to locate at regular grocery stores. Here are some tips for finding it:

  • Check at your local butcher shop or meat market, especially ones that carry high-quality veal. Let them know you’re looking for veal blade steak specifically.

  • Try gourmet grocery stores that offer a wide selection of veal cuts beyond the basics. Stores like Whole Foods Market may have it.

  • Search for online mail order steak companies that ship nationwide. This opens up access to veal blades steaks from farms across the country.

  • Look for veal shoulder roasts and ask your butcher to slice steaks from it. You can then cut them into blade steaks yourself at home.

  • Farmers markets and CSAs sometimes carry whole veal shoulders. Chat with vendors to see if they can get blade steaks.

With some persistence, you should be able to hunt down this underappreciated gem. And your patience will be rewarded once you taste how delicious it can be!

How to Prepare Veal Blade Steak for Maximum Tenderness

Achieving tender, melt-in-your-mouth veal blade steak requires proper preparation. Here are some tips:

  • Marinate the Steak – A marinade helps tenderize and add flavor. Go for at least 2-3 hours or up to overnight. Acidic ingredients like vinegar, wine, yogurt, or citrus will nicely tenderize the meat.

  • Slow Cook the Veal – Moist heat cooking methods are best to melt the connective tissue in the blade. Braise, stew, or slow roast the steak low and slow at 300°F or less until fork tender.

  • Keep it Moist – Adding liquid like broth, wine, or water while cooking prevents the steak from drying out. Use enough to come about halfway up the meat.

  • Sear it First – Before slow cooking, get nice browning on both sides by searing it in a hot skillet. This adds a depth of flavor.

  • Slice Against the Grain – After cooking, be sure to slice the veal against the grain of the meat fibers. This produces shorter muscle fibers for increased tenderness.

  • Let it Rest – Allow the cooked steak to rest for 5-10 minutes before cutting. This allows juices to redistribute evenly throughout the meat.

Follow these suggestions and the veal blade steak will transform from a tough cut into a tender and mouthwatering meal the whole family will love.

Best Cooking Methods for Veal Blade Steak

Thanks to its bountiful connective tissue, veal blade steak excels when prepared using moist, slow cooking techniques. Here are some of the best ways to cook this cut:

Braising – Braising involves browning the meat first to develop flavor, then slowly simmering it in a flavorful liquid until tender. Try adding aromatics like carrots, onions, and celery along with wine or broth.

Stewing – Similar to braising, but with smaller pieces of meat and more liquid. Turn the steaks into bite-size chunks before stewing with potatoes and other veggies.

Pot Roasting – Brown the steaks then roast them in a Dutch oven with herbs, broth, and vegetables for a hearty one-pot meal. Carrots, parsnips, and potatoes work well.

Slow Roasting – For a simple preparation, season the steaks with salt, pepper, and herbs then roast in a 300°F oven until fall-apart tender, basting periodically with pan juices.

Sous Vide – The precise temperature control of sous vide cooking lets you achieve perfect doneness. Try 24-48 hours at 135°F for ultratender results. Quickly sear before serving.

These wet cooking methods all take time but produce amazing flavor and texture that highlights the best qualities of the veal blade steak.

Delicious Veal Blade Steak Recipe Ideas

Here are just a few of the many fantastic ways to prepare veal blade steak:

  • Osso Buco Style – Braise with tomatoes, carrots, celery, onions, white wine, and herbs for a classic Italian-inspired dish. Garnish with gremolata.

  • Veal Blade Stroganoff – Quickly sear then finish cooking the steaks in a creamy mushrooms and onion sauce seasoned with paprika and thyme. Serve over egg noodles.

  • Veal Blades with Mole Sauce – Smother seared steaks in a rich Mexican mole sauce infused with chocolate, spices, and chili peppers for an explosion of flavor.

  • Teriyaki Veal Blades – Marinate steaks in a homemade or store-bought teriyaki marinade then grill or broil until caramelized but still juicy inside.

  • Veal Steak Sandwiches – Grill or pan-fry slices of blade steak then serve on crusty bread with sautéed peppers, onions, and melted provolone cheese.

However you choose to prepare your veal blade steaks, be sure to cook them gently using moist heat to bring out their best texture and flavor. Their versatility means the possibilities are endless for this undervalued cut!

Veal Blade Steak FAQs

Still have some questions about cooking with veal blade steak? Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:

How long does it take to cook veal blade steak?

Due to the connective tissue, veal blades need slow moist cooking for 1-3 hours depending on thickness. Braise, roast, or stew until fork tender.

Can you grill or pan sear veal blade steaks?

Yes, though they shouldn’t be cooked solely using high dry heat. You can sear them first to develop flavor then finish cooking gently using a moist method.

What’s the best way to store uncooked veal blade steaks?

Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or butcher paper and refrigerate for 2-3 days. For longer storage, freeze them for up to 4 months.

Is veal blade steak tough?

It can be if improperly cooked using high heat. But when braised, stewed, or roasted gently, the connective tissue melts away leaving tender, juicy meat.

What’s the best way to slice veal blade steaks after cooking?

Always slice against the grain of the meat fibers. This shorter grain makes even the toughest cuts tender to chew.

Satisfy Your Meat Cravings with Veal Blade Steak

The veal blade steak is an underappreciated cut that is worth seeking out. With characteristic marbling, a tasty rim of fat, and a tenderizing interior sinew, this flavorful steak can make a delicious meal when slowly cooked using moist heat.

Use this guide to track down veal blade steaks near you. Then transform them into tender, mouthwatering perfection

How to Cook Veal Steaks Perfectly With Fadila’s Kitchen

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