Blanquette de veau with pilau rice

Not yet rated

As the weather cools, Eric Chavot’s classic blanquette de veau recipe makes for a perfect autumnal supper. A gentle, comforting dish, blanquette de veau is a traditional veal stew cooked in a white, creamy sauce, paired with a warming, aromatic pilau. This dish is a true snapshot of French culinary heritage.

First published in 2015




Veal broth


Pilau rice


Rinse the veal under cold water for 5 minutes. Drain, and place in a large saucepan, then cover with cold water and add a couple of good pinches of fine sea salt. Bring the meat up to a gentle simmer. As the meat simmers, skim the surface to remove any impurities
Add the rest of the ingredients for the broth to the saucepan, making sure you mix thoroughly. Return to a gentle simmer and cook for a further 40–50 minutes until the veal is tender throughout. Remove the saucepan from the heat and set aside so the veal cools in the broth
Once cooled, remove the meat and garnish from the broth and cover with cling film or a damp cloth. Reduce the remaining cooking liquor down to 500ml
To make the sauce, make a roux by melting the butter in a stainless steel or glazed cast iron saucepan (do not use aluminium or copper as this will ruin the sauce). Once the butter begins to foam, add the flour and cook gently for a couple of minutes without letting it colour
Add the reserved reduced veal broth in a steady stream whilst whisking continuously – this ensures a smooth velouté. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer and add the button mushrooms, carrots, onions and the cream. Cook for a further 15–20 minutes
Check the seasoning of the sauce and adjust accordingly. Add the meat and garnish and simmer until hot. Balance with the lemon juice, fold in the zest and top with parsley and celery leaves. You can perform steps 1–3 the day before serving, and finish off the recipe on the day
For the pilau rice, rinse the basmati rice under cold water and set aside to drain. Cook the wild rice in salted boiling water for 30–35 minutes and drain when cooked
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6
In a small saucepan, add the water, chicken bouillon and 1/2 tsp of salt. Bring to a gentle simmer
In a medium-sized, stainless steel saucepan, add the butter and olive oil and heat until it begins to foam. When foaming, add the onions, garlic and thyme with a pinch of salt and pepper and sweat gently
When sweated down, add all of the spices and cook until they become fragrant. Add the drained basmati rice and mix thoroughly. Cover the rice mixture with the simmering bouillon mixture and cover with a cartouche (a circle of baking parchment) and a lid. Cook in the oven for 18–20 minutes
When ready, remove from the heat and leave to stand for a few minutes. Remove the bay leaves, sprigs of thyme and cinnamon stick before serving with the blanquette
First published in 2015

Eric Chavot’s cuisine has been championed by fellow chefs, diners and critics alike – not bad for a chef who arrived in London without a word of English and just twenty pounds in his pocket.

Get in touch

Please sign in or register to send a comment to Great British Chefs.