Have the meat prepared by your butcher. The chine bone should be removed and the thick, fatty piece of meat removed from the rib bones, which should be scraped clean. The joint will now be easy to carve in slices across the grain of the meat, parallel to the rib bones. Keep the bones and trimmings for stock.
Peel and finely chop the garlic and shallots, and mix with the rest of the ingredients for the crust. Spread the mixture over all the meat. Cover closely with clingfilm, or foil, and refrigerate overnight so that the meat takes on some of the flavours of the crust.
Next day, bring the joint to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 150-175°C/300-325°F/gas mark 2. Place the joint in a roasting tin, and cook it in the middle of a slow oven for about 2 hours. Every 40 minutes, pour on a tablespoon of veal stock.
Remove the meat from the oven, and keep it warm while you make the gravy. Gently pour out any fat from the roasting tin, and then set it over a low heat. Scrape up any caramelized cooking juices with a metal spoon, add a little water and the rest of the stock. Boil and scrape until you have a good mixture. A spoonful or two of whatever wine you are serving with the veal would not come amiss, but it is not essential.
Carve the veal into thinnish slices, and arrange on a serving platter with the gravy handed separately, or arrange a couple of slices on each heated dinner plate, pour on a little gravy, and add whatever vegetables and/or starch you have chosen to accompany the veal.
© 2000 Frances Bissell. All rights reserved.