Spicy veal stew – Italian spezzatino – with a choice of sides

Veal spicy stew with grilled polenta

Bread, rice, potatoes or polenta: a choice of sides for spezzatino

What here is called “stew” or “hot-pot”, in Italy is called “spezzatino”: diced meat.

It can be done with any kind of meat: veal, beef, turkey or game such as wild boar. Many are the recipes and the variations between one region and another.

But for almost all of them you can have quite a wide range of sides. Polenta, rice, bread or potatoes: they are all good, but you have to match them properly.

White boiled rice, with a touch of raw butter, goes together well with delicate and sweet flavours or it is a good choice when you don’t want to overwhelm the taste of the main dish.

Polenta and potatoes have a sweet taste themselves, so they well match the acidic notes of tomato, which is a quite common base for “spezzatino” (see the veal “fricassée”).

Bread is the perfect choise for any robust game dish, as long as it is a rustic bread… certainly not sliced bread! Game can go perfectly well together with grilled polenta as well.

In here you see a variation of the recipe for “Spicy Veal Stew”: I like both options, but my mom used to make it with rice, so I wanted to respect the family tradition.

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