Ready for a delicious adaptation for Tasty Tuesday? This recipe for Scotch Collops took some serious thought to update to something my hubby and I might enjoy. And that we could afford. Here we go!
First, as always, comes Hannah Glasse’s receipt from The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy:
To dress Scotch Collops.
Take a piece of fillet of veal, cut it in thin pieces, about as big as a crown piece, but very thin; shake a little flour over it, then put a little butter in a frying-pan, and melt it; put in your collops, and fry them quick till they are brown, then lay them in a dish. Have ready a good ragoo made thus: take a little butter in your stew-pan, and melt it, then add a large spoonful of flour; stir it about till it is smooth, then put in a pint of good brown gravy; season it with pepper and salt, pour in a small glass of white-wine, some veal sweet-breads, force meat balls, truffles and morels, ox palates, and mushrooms; stew them gently for half an hour, add the juice of half a lemon to it, put it over the collops, and garnish with rashers of bacon. Some like Scotch collops made thus: put the collops into the ragoo, and stew them for five minutes.
Whew! This one was a challenge on several fronts. First the call for veal (again) which in my area is running around $26/pound. Out of my price range. So what might I substitute? I thought of chicken, but then realized the veal would have a beef-like flavor, not a poultry taste. What else is lean and has a hearty flavor? After some thought, I decided to use leg of lamb cut thin and into small pieces. Off to the store I went… But the only leg of lamb in my local Publix grocery store was organic and cost $36! Nope. My hubby stopped at Sam’s Club on his way home, and they were sold out of leg of lamb, too. So I went to a local meat store the next day and they also were sold out of leg of lamb. I don’t understand why nobody had any all at the same time. But the lady at the meat store pointed out a package of frozen lamb cuts. Small pieces with bone, it turns out, but they were approximately the right size and shape. Or at least close enough. So that’s what I used. However, next time (and there will be a next time) I’ll use the leg of lamb cut to shape.
Notice that Mrs. Glasse says to “have ready a good ragoo” which meant I needed to fix that before I started sautéing the lamb. So let’s look next at the ingredients for the ragoo.
Butter, flour, a pint of brown gravy, pepper, salt, white wine, veal sweet-breads, force meat balls, truffles and morels, ox palates, mushrooms, and lemon juice. Whoa. Veal sweet-breads? What are they? Off to look them up only to find it’s the pancreas of the calf. Um. No. I couldn’t bring myself to include them. Sorry, Mrs. Glasse!
Okay, so force meat balls. I’d made them earlier about the same time I made brown gravy from the broth, so now that I know they’re going into a brown gravy dish, I put some into a heated frying pan and browned them on all sides. Since I made them with butter shavings, I didn’t need to use any other oil or spray in the pan. Then when they were browned I removed them from the pan and set them aside to continue with the ragoo recipe.
Truffles and morels and mushrooms? First, I knew truffles are a kind of fungus, but I had not heard of morels before. Turns out they’re related also to truffles and mushrooms. If I’ve eaten either of them, I couldn’t tell you what they tasted like. If you have and would like to let me in on the experience, I’m all ears. However, both truffles and morels are expensive and difficult to locate. That’s not the point of adapting these recipes, to make it expensive and challenging to prepare. So I only used white mushrooms readily available from my local grocery store.
Ox palate was next. You know, the actual roof of the mouth of an ox? Nope, sorry. I’m not even sure where I’d locate one. I could find ox tongue at my local meat store which was a good sized piece of meat (believe it or not), but no palate. So I skipped that ingredient as well. I did think about how back in the 18th century they used every piece of the animal they’d butchered. To make broth or stew or whatever. I wonder what happens to the pieces we don’t see at the grocery store? Research for another day!
I mixed the other ingredients together to simmer while I fried the bacon “rashers” or thin slices – in my case, I used what I had on hand: 2 slices of bacon halved. Once the ragoo and the bacon were ready, I sautéed the lamb cuts to brown them and cook them to medium doneness, then put them in a dish and poured the hot ragoo over, garnishing the finished dish with the bacon.
Here’s my adapted recipe…
Betty’s Scotch Collops
1 lb. Lamb, boneless, cut thin
¾ cup flour, divided
2 T + 1 T unsalted butter
1 cup brown gravy
2 oz. white wine (I used chardonnay)
16 force-meat balls, browned
5 mushrooms, diced
2 oz. lemon juice (equivalent of juice of ½ of one lemon)
2 slices bacon, halved and fried until crisp
Cut lamb into small, thin pieces.
Sprinkle ¼ cup flour over the meat.
Set the meat aside while you make the sauce or “ragoo”…
Melt 1 T butter in a saucepan.
Stir in ½ cup of flour until smooth.
Add gravy, seasonings, wine, force-meat balls, mushrooms and cook gently for 15-20 minutes.
Add lemon juice.
Melt 2 T butter in a deep skillet.
Brown the collops over medium-high heat.
Remove to a serving dish.
Pour the ragoo over the collops.
Garnish with bacon slices and serve.
Hubby and I really enjoyed the combination of flavors. The only problem we had was the numerous small, sharp bones that the lamb cuts contained. That’s why next time, and in my recipe above, I’m calling for boneless lamb.
You can probably tell from the ingredients that this is a rich dish. We had enough for two meals for each of us. I’d recommend pairing it with something light, like steamed broccoli or a tossed salad and maybe some garlic toast.
I hope you enjoy this one as much as we did! What do you think about truffles and morels? Have you tried them?
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In 1782, the fight for independence becomes personal…
Emily Sullivan’s greatest fear is dying in childbirth, as did her twin sister and their mother. Despite her half-hearted protests, her father insists Frank Thomson is the perfect man for both her protection from the vengeful British and as a husband. Frank always loved Emily despite her refusal to return his affections. A patriot spy posing as a loyalist officer, when Frank learns Emily’s been imprisoned for her father’s privateering, he risks his own neck to free his love.
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