The succulence and tastiness of this roast derive in part from the cooking method and in part from the specific combination of meat and vegetable. The method is the characteristically Italian one of cooking meat on top of the stove rather than in the oven, a procedure that, as I have mentioned elsewhere in these pages, produces very satisfying depth of flavor.
You should also note that once the veal is cooked and sliced, you return it to the pot and turn the slices over at low heat in the combined cooking juices and vegetables. This is a brief step, taking less than a minute, which does wonders for the finished dish because every surface of the meat becomes impregnated by the flavors of the roast, and at the same time the meat recovers some of the heat lost during the slicing. I follow this step any time that I am roasting a whole piece of meat, whether it is veal, beef, or pork.
The radicchio helps the naturally mild-flavored veal achieve a greater intensity and richness of taste than it would otherwise be capable of. If the long-leafed Treviso radicchio is available to you, it should be your first choice, but failing that you can obtain equally satisfactory results with that closely related member of the chicory family, Belgian endive.
Tenderloin yields the most tender and juicy results with this recipe, but a nice boned shoulder will certainly not disappoint. If you are using shoulder, do not have the butcher roll it up and truss it, because you would then not be able to brown all its parts.
© 1997 Marcella Hazan estate. All rights reserved.