Saltimbocca is a classic Italian dish that is super quick and economical! I love the texture contrast between crispy prosciutto, tender meat and silky white wine butter sauce. Saltimbocca is traditionally made with veal, but it’s also great with chicken, pork or beef.
Hot Tip: Great dinner party/advance recipe. Just refrigerate and it’s ready in 3 and a half minutes (including the sauce!).
The literal translation of saltimbocca is “jump in your mouth”. This could refer to the flavors that whette the palate on the first bite. But it might also be about the speed at which it can be done. Like: So fast, it bounces in your mouth. do you know what i did there??
Saltimbocca, a classic Italian dish from Rome, is traditionally prepared with thin veal chops wrapped or topped with whole prosciutto and sage leaves, pressed or pinned with toothpicks It is often the case that the prosciutto is pan-fried to a golden color and the meat inside is so thin that it literally takes two-and-a-half minutes to cook flat. Prepare a white wine sauce. It will be ready in 1 minute.
Simple, classic, rustic and wonderful. A cursory search of recipes on the Internet reveals even more surprising versions of saltimbocca, including a rolled version that looks like parmigiana, a skewered version, and a cheese-covered version. In fact, real saltimbocca is much simpler. After all, why spoil perfection?
Veal, beef, pork or chicken Saltimbocca
As mentioned earlier, saltimbocca is traditionally made with veal.
Veal and Beef Saltimbocca – I’ve tried both and here’s the difference: is. Veal is a more delicate and tender version of beef with a lighter flavor and a more luxurious texture. Beef slammed into thin steaks suitable for saltimbocca will be more tender than thick cut steaks, but not as tender as veal.
I’m not saying veal is better than beef. You are just different! Another difference is the use of pork or chicken in saltimbocca – both are very tasty. should be added.
The chicken saltimbocca pictured below was yesterday’s lunch. I hurriedly took pictures and vacuumed while it was still warm!
Ingredients in Saltimbocca
Here’s what you need to make traditional Italian Saltimbocca:
- Veal (or chicken or beef) – whatever your protein preference, it should be a thin strip of meat. It’s convenient to buy it as a thinly sliced steak (sometimes sold as ‘sizzle steak’, ‘scalopini’ or ‘schnitzel’ in Australia). Otherwise, you can slice the meat yourself and then flatten the steak, here in Australia especially veal steaks are always sold thin and beef cut thick like his steak It is not
- When cooking saltimbocca meat, use meat that is suitable for light cooking, such as steak. A hard cut that requires slow cooking to soften. B. Liners, ribs, belly and shoulders (areas used for stews and casseroles) are not suitable.
- Chicken – Whole breast cut into steaks and battered. See the step-by-step photo below for detailed instructions (I promise it’s easy, doesn’t have to be perfect, and can be cooked).
- Prosciutto – This makes saltimbocca like a classic fried meatball! Prosciutto is also the main condiment in this dish. Add a pinch of salt to the sauce, but not the veal!
- This is how much prosciutto you need – 4 small pieces or 2 very large slices. A double layer of ham is enough to cover one side of the veal. The bottom is not covered with prosciutto (it can be completely wrapped, but I don’t like it).
- Fresh Sage – A key herb in saltimbocca, sage pairs beautifully with prosciutto and meat. It also adds color. I love the crispy texture when fried!
- White Wine – A little wine is the secret to making a really good bread sauce without messing with too many ingredients. The wine is reduced to evaporate most of the alcohol, leaving only the flavors. So it doesn’t taste like wine at all.
- Wine type – Pinot Grigio, a popular Italian wine variety, is suitable. But personally, I also like Chardonnay because of the aggressive flavors that this wine brings to cooking.
- In fact, sparkling wine and champagne go well here as well as white wine. Marsala is a fortified wine, sometimes traditionally used in Italian saltimbocca, but it is very sweet and savory, so use it sparingly.
- Non-Alcoholic Sub: I think non-alcoholic white wine works best here. Second, use low-sodium chicken broth (be sure to use low-salt or your dish may be a little too salty).
- COLD Butter – Butter turns a watery liquid into a silky, slightly viscous sauce without the use of thickeners such as flour or cornstarch/cornflour. More precisely, in classical cooking it is called “soaking the sauce”. Butter must be chilled to work properly. Cut into cubes so that they dissolve evenly and slowly in the sauce. Watch the recipe video below to see how the sauce works its magic.
- Flour – This is used to dust the non-ham side of the veal. When cooked, they will form a thin crust that will cling to the sauce. Otherwise the sauce will slide off the surface of the meat like Teflon.
- Pepper only – no salt needed! Prosciutto salt is all you need for veal.
- Olive Oil – For Roasting Veal.
How to make Saltimbocca
As I was rereading this post, I noticed that it contained a lot of step-by-step photos of recipes. It’s really not that hard, I promise. I thought building Saltimbocca might be new to some readers, so I wanted to walk you through it step by step. Here’s everything you need to know:
1. ASSEMBLE THE SALTIMBOCCA
You can speed up the preparation by purchasing ready-to-cook thinly sliced veal, such as those commonly sold here in Australia. Chicken and beef are also sold in an ultra-thin state.
- Thinly pounded – pound the veal to 3 mm thickness and cut each into 4 pieces. The size or shape of the pieces doesn’t matter, but the thickness is more important.
- Best Way to Pound Meat: To protect the meat, wrap the veal in two freezer bags, baking paper (parchment), or a specially made plastic sheet called “Go-Between*” (see below). photo). Then use a meat mallet or rolling pin to gently pat the veal evenly to flatten it evenly.
- Use the serrated side of the meat tenderizer on red meat (veal and beef) and the smooth side on more delicate poultry.
- Cut Chicken for Saltimbocca – See info box below for detailed instructions.
- Prosciutto – sprinkle veal with pepper (no salt, prosciutto is fine). Fold the prosciutto in half and place it over the veal. Note that it doesn’t wrap the meat, it just covers the top.
- Secure with a toothpick – Place a large sage leaf on the ham and secure the ham and sage with a toothpick. Pierce the meat through the underside, thread the ham and sage through, and pull the underside out. This means it lays flatter on the meat and cooks more evenly.
- Flour the bottom side – Dust the sides of the veal without the ham with flour and shake off excess flour.
* Go-Between is a wrap roll that can be torn off like a wrap to adjust size. It is used to protect delicate meat when pounding and sandwich it between layers to keep it from sticking (hence the name). Especially useful for freezing things
2. COOKING SALTIMBOCCA
- The golden part that sticks to the pan in step 4 is called “stock” and is used to season the saltimbocca sauce!
Sear – Grill the ham side of the veal first until golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes.
- Flip over and fry the floured side for an additional 60 seconds.
- Place the veal directly onto the serving plate (or individual plates) while you prepare the sauce.
- Drain excess oil from the frying pan. Flip over, but don’t scrape the pan clean. Anything golden that sticks to the pan is called stock. The secret is the dashi stock that is packed with umami and umami, and it’s an exquisite bread sauce made with just wine and butter!
3. SALTIMBOCCA SAUCE
Preparing the pan sauce takes 1 minute. He takes 30 seconds to reduce the wine, then a cold cube of butter, which he takes 30 seconds to mix until it melts into a silky sauce.
- Wine – Put the pot back on the stove and add the wine.
- Cut Wine in Half – Use only a small amount (1/4 cup / 60ml) in a large hot pot, so the wine boils quickly. Reduce by half for about 20-30 seconds.
- Add Cold Butter – Turn off heat, sprinkle with diced butter and place in pan until butter melts (or use a wooden spoon). Slowly melting cold butter over an off stove is the secret to creating opaque, thick sauces like saltimbocca’s white wine sauce. The higher the temperature, the faster the butter will melt and become clear, and the sauce will not thicken as effectively. But it’s still delicious!
- thick sauce – and here it is! Look how creamy and glossy this sauce is. This is what happens when you slowly melt cold butter into the sauce!
- A Note on Sauce Color: The final color of the sauce will be affected by the amount of stock added to the pan. More stock = more brown or more orange sauce (as in the video). Less stock = more buttery yellow sauce, like the photo in this post.
That’s it! It’s super fast. Otherwise you will overcook the veal. Serving time: Place the saltimbocca on a serving plate and spoon this dreamy sauce over it.