Fillet of Veal, au Bechamel, with Oysters


Roast, in the usual way, a delicate fillet of veal, and in preparing it for the spit be careful to bind it up tightly, so that no cavity may be left where the bone has been taken out. While it is at the fire, plump gently in their own strained liquor, without allowing them to boil, half a pint of fine native oysters, and, after having freed them from the beards, set them aside; then boil the beards for fifteen or twenty minutes in nearly three quarters of a pint of good veal stock, or in strong veal broth, made for the purpose; strain them out, add the liquor of the oysters, also passed through a muslin or other fine strainer, and convert the broth into rich white sauce, of which there should be a full pint. When the veal is ready to serve, take it from the spit, dish it in a very hot dish, and cut out quickly from the centre in a cup-like form, about a pound of the meat, leaving a wide margin round the joint, to be carved in the usual way. Mince, as rapidly as possible, the white part of the veal which has been cut from the fillet, and the plumped oysters; put the whole into the white sauce, which should be ready heated, bring it to the point of boiling, pour it into the fillet, and send it immediately to table. The joint should be placed under a well-heated cover, while the mince is in course of preparation, and be kept near the fire.

When the knuckle of veal has been sent in with the fillet, a few thick slices from it may be taken for the sauce; but it should be boiled down sufficiently early to allow it to cool, and to have every particle of fat removed from it before it is used. A pound of the meat ought to make, with the addition of the oyster liquor, sufficient gravy for the sauce. When expense is not a consideration, the béchamel. may be made for it, and the fillet may be filled up entirely with whole oysters heated in it; or these may be intermixed with the veal cut into shilling-sized collops. Mushroom-buttons, stewed white in butter, can be substituted for the oysters, when their season is past; and very small force-meat bolls, delicately fried, may then be piled entirely over the open part of the fillet.

Persons who may take exception at the idea of oysters with roast teal, as not being in accordance with the common etiquette of the table, are recommended to give the innovation a trial before they reject its adoption.