Fireside Feast

Hello my faithful readers! I have to apologize once again for another 5-month hiatus. Sometimes life just gets in the way — between class, my internship, and my job it was impossible to set time aside to do some serious cooking. After dreaming of this recipe for months on end, I finally cleared my schedule for some good, old-fashioned kitchen time. On tap for tonight is a scrumptious meal of Veal Dumplings and Egg Fettuccine. Let’s get cooking!

Mikella and I decided we needed a weekend to recharge and be productive, and thought it was the perfect time to bring back evoo! Today was beautiful winter day, so we chose to walk up to Whole Foods in Columbus Circle. I thought it would be best to skip Trader Joe’s because I knew they wouldn’t have ground veal, and I was not in the mood to grocery hop today. Unsurprisingly, Whole Foods was a madhouse; but we managed to find everything we needed in a timely manner.

We spent a majority of the time trying to select the best cheese — cause ya know, cheese can really make or break a dish. We went back and forth between the parmigiano reggiano that was on sale and the one that was full price. Ultimately, we decided to splurge a little since it was evoo’s comeback night. In total we only spent $32 which is a freaking steal when it comes to any of the recipes in the party section of the cookbook.

A little while later after we watched a crazy conspiracy video, we made our way to the kitchen and got to work.

We started as we always do with chopping. I let Mikella take her pick on what to chop — she chose the onion, which I was secretly pumped about because I was not in the mood to cry. She actually had to grate the onion which is something neither of us had ever done before. She handled that like a pro while I minced the garlic and thyme.

Kell is afraid to touch raw meat, so I switched spots with her when it came time to form the dumplings. I mixed together the veal, egg, bread crumbs, onion, nutmeg, and parmigiano reggiano cheese then formed mini meat balls…er dumplings. I don’t even know what they are. Rachel Ray says dumplings but they’re just meatballs so I guess I’ll call them dump-balls.

As I plopped the dump-balls into a pot of boiling water, our pal Lindsey arrived with the wine! I told her it was totally okay to skip on helping in the kitchen as long as she brought the libations. She went above and beyond — even asking the liquor store guy what wine pairs best with veal (cabernet sauvignon). What an angel!

Kell took care of the pasta — I trusted her Italian genes to cook it perfectly — and once the dump-balls were done I quickly made the sauce: a simple concoction of butter, garlic, thyme and crushed tomatoes.

We threw the dump-balls and noodles into the sauce, and tossed it all together. Before we knew it, it was time to eat! This recipe was ridiculously easy to make and is one of the few that actually takes 30 minutes (yay!) We filled our plates, and headed downstairs to our dining room.


I had been waiting 5-months for this moment of truth. We piled a little bit of everything onto our forks, and counted down for the moment of truth. 3…2…1… Yum-o! I don’t know if this dish tasted so good because of the anticipation for it, or because it was actually superb. Kell had cooked the noods to perfection, and the dump-balls were super savory. It was the first time Lindsey and Mikella had ever tried veal, and they both gave it a big thumbs up. I loved the dish so much I happily helped myself to a huge plate of seconds.

Now time for the ratings. We all collectively agreed that the Veal Dumplings (Dump-Balls) and Egg Fettuccine was a solid ♥♥♥♥ (4) hearts. This meal was hearty and delicious, but ultimately could’ve used more seasoning. All-in-all a great introduction back into regular evoo feasts!

I say this time and time again, but nothing brings people closer than cooking together. While I’ve been busy these past few months, I couldn’t help but feel like there was something missing in my life — I found what I was missing tonight. Although I may not be able to bring my friend’s together once a week to cook and feast, I’m definitely going to make it happen at least twice a month. If you haven’t cooked with your friends, I seriously encourage you to try it. I promise your life will change for the better.

Until next time!

-Mary Honkus