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Pomegranate molasses marinated veal chops

on sprout tops, baby sprouts, pomegranate seeds & hazelnuts

First take a small sandwich bag and place the 2 veal chops and 2 tbsps of pomegranate molasses in the bag. Seal the bag, shaking and massaging the chops so that they are evenly coated. Place in the fridge for 2 hours or more to marinade, better still, overnight!

When the chops have marinated, place an ovenproof frying pan on a medium heat with a glug of rapeseed oil in the bottom. Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Sprinkle a little salt and pepper over both sides of the chops and add to the frying pan. Fry until browned well on one side. It is fine if it goes a little black on parts, it is just the molasses caramelising.

Turn the chops over and place in the oven for 10 minutes. A little longer if you have thicker chops. This timing is for chops roughly 3/4 inch thick. Remember to let the chops rest a few minutes before serving.

Take the brussel sprout top and remove the leaves, slice them finely across the leaf. Brussel sprout tops have tiny little sprouts towards the top of the plant at the base of the leaves which have not yet fully grown. Remove as many as these as you can see.

Steam the sliced leaves and tiny sprouts for a few minutes until just softened and then remove from the heat, drain and transfer to a small mixing bowl.

For the toasted hazelnuts, place a frying pan on a medium heat. Roughly crush the hazelnuts and add to the frying pan, moving them regularly until lightly browned then remove from the heat.

Into the mixing bowl, with the sprouts and leaves in, add a small glug of rapeseed oil, 1 tsp of red wine vinegar, 1/2 tbsp of pomegranate molasses and a pinch of salt and toss so evenly coated.

Place the leaves and sprouts over 2 plates, chops on top, followed by a scattering on pomegranate seeds and toasted hazelnuts. Drizzle over any juices that are left in the pan also.

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Veal has been somewhat of a taboo meat for many years, and rightly so for several reasons. One being that the calves were kept in tiny enclosed crates so they could not move, making the meat more delicate and pale.

Laws in the UK were put in place to make this cruelty illegal in 1990 but the stigmatism has remained. Conditions are now considered humane and ethical; the RSPCA’s Freedom Food scheme has endorsed the farming and consumption of it.

Dairy farming cows must go into calf every year or so to continue the production of their milk, it is from this that veal is a by-product. Male dairy cows are not considered a commercial grade for meat and the cost to rear them for no profitable is not always feasible, this often results in the calves lives being terminated shortly after birth. If there was a higher demand it could help sustain an already struggling dairy industry and reduce mindless culling.

Not what you may have thought…!?

Pomegranate molasses is better known in middle eastern cuisine; a reduction of pomegranate juice that can actually be made at home easily, resulting in a dark syrup that is rich, sweet, sour and fruity, providing depth to meat dishes such as this one.

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Exmoor, Devon
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