Dijon Mustard and Tarragon Breaded Escalope of Veal baked with Lorraine Swiss Cheese and Minced Ham!
This recipe was one that I originally learned from a French chef at a trendy French bakery restaurant in Philadelphia. The chef's Lapérouse recipe was the same as this recipe, but it was not topped with minced ham.
About ten years later, while working for a different French chef, I had a request to run this veal entree as a special du jour. I honestly could not remember how to make this recipe, so I asked the French chef how it is made. The French chef told me that he did not have a clue as to what the Lapérouse recipe was! The chef said that in France, many chefs give their own creative recipes nice names. He said that many regional French recipes are not documented in classic French cook books.
I had two days to find out how this recipe was made, before I had to cook this recipe for a small dinner party. I went to the library and I found some basic information about the Lapérouse veal entree. The recipe was actually a brief description of this Lapérouse veal entree in a French traveller's guide. The description also had a photo of the entree. All it took was one look and I remembered the Lapérouse recipe from Philadelphia.
There was a slight difference in the Lapérouse veal recipes though. The traveller's guide recipe description showed that minced ham was placed on the cheese before baking. The traveller's guide mentioned that the recipe came from a French town on the border of Switzerland. Everything made sense about this recipe, because the style of this Lapérouse veal entree looked like it had some Swiss influence.
The Lorraine region of France borders Switzerland. Many French beers and cheeses near the border are pretty mush the same as comparable traditional Swiss products. There are many varieties of emmentaler cheese (swiss cheese), both in Switzerland and the Lorraine region. Some French emmentaler styles do have the name Lorraine and some do have small holes with a milder flavor. These styles of Lorraine emmentaler are rarely exported to America. American Lorraine Swiss cheese is really an American version of emmentaler that is often called baby swiss. It was designed to have smaller holes, so it could be easily sliced at delicatessens and so it could easily be packaged. The rule of thumb for any emmentaler is, the larger the holes, the stronger the flavor. A Lorraine Swiss has a milder flavor and small holes.
Jean-François de Galaup, comte de Lapérouse was who this recipe was named after. Lapérouse was a French naval officer and explorer who was lost at sea in the year 1788. The French or Swiss chef that created this recipe seemed to have designed the recipe to be period correct. This Lapérouse veal recipe does look like an entree that would appeal to a French naval officer. This is a very tasty simple recipe!
Escalope de veau Lapérouse Recipe:
Select a 5 to 6 ounce thin sliced veal leg cutlet. Most butchers and grocers do offer thin cutlets of veal leg for scallopini.
Place the veal leg cutlet on a counter top and cover it with a piece of plastic wrap.
Gently pound the veal leg cutlet with a meat mallet or wine bottle till it becomes evenly thin.
Place 1 egg into a mixing bowl.
Add 2 tablespoons of dijon mustard.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice.
Add 1 tablespoon of milk.
Add 3 pinches of tarragon.
Add sea salt and black pepper.
Whisk the dijon mustard and tarragon egg wash, till it becomes well blended.
Dredge the veal in flour.
Dip the floured veal escallop into the egg wash.
Dredge the veal in plain fine French bread crumbs.
Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
Add 4 pats of unsalted butter.
Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, lard or duck fat.
Place the breaded veal into the hot pan.
Pan fry both sides of the veal escallop, till it becomes a light golden brown color.
Place the veal escallop on a baking pan.
Blot any excess grease off of the pan fried veal with a dry towel.
Sprinkle 2 to 3 tablespoons of grated Lorraine Swiss cheese (mild emmentaler) on top of the veal.
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of minced ham on top of the cheese.
Bake the veal in a 300º oven, till the cheese becomes soft and melts. (Do not allow the cheese to brown! The cheese is supposed to be only melted on top of the veal.)
Place the veal Laperouse on a plate.
Garnish the veal with a few small Italian parsley leaves.
Serve with an oven roasted potato and a vegetable of your choice.
A Swiss chef showed me how to do this chateau style tourne. Practice is the only way to become good at making any tourne potatoes!
The flavor of this Lapérouse veal recipe is gentle and very nice! The flavor of the dijon mustard and tarragon breading can be noticed with every bite. Both the Lorraine Swiss cheese and the ham are well matched to the dijon mustard tarragon flavored veal. This is a simple French veal recipe that has a very nice old time comfortable flavor! Yum! ... Shawna