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Old 04-06-2008, 07:28 PM   #1
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Rack of Veal: WAY too tough!

I roasted it in an oven at 325, it took about 2 hours, and it was around 160F in the inside right near the bone. I put a bit of stock into the pan as it was cooking (like, about a ladle-full every 20 minutes), and i had marinated it in the fridge for about 3 hours before, rubbed with olive oil, garlic, and rosemary.

But when we took it out of the oven, it was so tough we could barely cut it! Did I overcook it somehow? My family said it looked just like it should, but I'm nearly convinced it was overcooked. What did I do wrong?

Mike

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Old 04-06-2008, 07:30 PM   #2
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I would have cooked it less. 160F is quite well done. IMO veal should be cooked to medium - pink on the inside.
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Old 04-06-2008, 09:53 PM   #3
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I think it may have been overcooked by about 20-30 degrees.

I know it's disappointing when something like this happens. One thing you don't want to do is take the temp near the bone. Take it in the thickest part of the meat.
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:28 PM   #4
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I'm a bit confused. I was told to get the veal to 160 degrees. I'll agree that it was probably overcooked (maybe 140F is a better temperature), but doesn't that mean "get the *entire* piece up to and above 160 degrees"? In other words, if it says "get the roast up to X degrees", which part of the roast should be there and which parts should be lower?

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Old 04-07-2008, 12:36 PM   #5
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I take roasts out of the oven 7-10 degrees under the target temp. This allows the carry over cooking to finish it off. Same goes for poultry or anything roasting in the oven. Test the temp in the meatiest part towards the center.
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:42 PM   #6
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You should place any meat thermometer so the point of the probe is at the center of the roast. No roast cooks to the same degree of doneness throughout the entire piece of meat. The outer surfaces will always be more well done than the center.

With meats that can be safely cooked to different degrees of doneness, the approach is to get the majority of the meat to the desired level of doneness, accepting the fact that some parts will be cooked to different levels of doneness.

With chicken and turkey the approach differs as there is a minimum safe temperature that every part of the bird must attain.

160F is, in my opinion, much too well done. I like it to be medium, you may like it well done. The meat closest to the bone will cook slower so if the temperature there was 160 F, the heart of the roast (where the good stuff is) was well above that number.

The 160 F number is not a food safety requirement for veal.
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Old 04-07-2008, 02:02 PM   #7
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veal is a difficult meat to judge. As baby beef we expect it to be tender. Well, it isn't unless: it is milk fed rather corn raised. Still, different cuts produce different product. Tenderloin and loin of veal will be tender if properly sliced. Other areas need to be sliced thin and pounded for tenderness (sometimes folded over and pounded down to a single thickness. Other areas do best by braising low and slow (shanks, breast, etc) Your cutlets, scalopini, etc need to be quick cooked and served to prevent toughness.

Like calamari, fast sautee or low and slow braise with not much in the middle.

A roast on the bone as I gather you were doing needs to be med or med rare to be tender, or do it as a pot roast if that's not your style. It will still be delilsh.
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Old 04-07-2008, 02:48 PM   #8
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The meat closest to the bone will cook slower so if the temperature there was 160 F, the heart of the roast (where the good stuff is) was well above that number.
I was just going to say this. Most of your meat was well above 160 degrees, meaning it was very much overcooked.
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Old 08-07-2008, 04:05 PM   #9
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I cook my veal racks at 450 degrees for the first 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 350 and cook until the internal temp is 130 degrees. I let it rest for 20 to 30 minutes and the temp usually peaks around 140 to 145, which is perfect for medium doneness. Always try to get milk fed veal if you can because it's more tender. My aunt used to make it this way and it always came out tender and juicy.
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Old 08-07-2008, 07:23 PM   #10
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I cook my veal racks at 450 degrees for the first 15 minutes, then lower the heat to 350 and cook until the internal temp is 130 degrees. I let it rest for 20 to 30 minutes and the temp usually peaks around 140 to 145, which is perfect for medium doneness. Always try to get milk fed veal if you can because it's more tender. My aunt used to make it this way and it always came out tender and juicy.
Thats how I like to do it first hot and then turn it down to 350 the hot will sear the rack a bit so it seals in the moisture. I would not ladle anything on it at all I think that just sucks the moisture out of the meat as the juice you ladled evaporates. A nice dry rub is all you need. Also don't open oven all the time checking. If you have a wire thermometer use it and set temp to 135- 140 put probe in the middle of meat that way you have some more done on the ends. When you take out of oven put on another pan and cover loosely with foil and let rest about 30 minutes. That will let it finish cooking and allows the juice the the bones sucked from the meat to go back to the meat.
Make a light thin sauce with the drippings if you want
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