Veal slow-cooked with mushrooms and aromatics concentrates to a deeply savory stew. The warm meaty flavor is freshened by the green coiled ferns, added at the last minute. (Don’t be tempted to serve them separately—they are far more delicious combined.) The bit of cream acts as liaison and adds unexpected lightness and nuttiness.
Theoretically, two pounds of veal should serve six, but it simply did not satisfy more than four gourmands. Note that cooking time can vary considerably, so it makes sense to plan on the longer time, then simply remove the stew from the oven if finished early. Or make ahead, minus the fiddleheads, then reheat and stir in the blanched ferns.