Frozen / 2 lb avg
Veal thymus glands from our imported, French, milk-fed veal - exclusively available in the U.S. at D'Artagnan. Arguably the most humanely-raised and best-tasting veal available in the market, our veal comes from a cooperative of small-scale veal farms in Southwest France that raise Charolais and Limousin breeds of cattle (known for meat, not dairy) and follow the stringent European Union 5 Freedoms system to provide the best environment for the calves, which are never caged or penned and are antibiotic - and hormone-free.
Just the facts
- Exclusively available at D’Artagnan
- Humanely raised in a stress-free environment
- Never caged or penned
- 5 Freedoms compliant, a strict EU standard
- Male Charolais and Limousin breeds
- Raised to 6 months, a maximum of 450 pounds
- Milk-fed; 14 days on mother’s milk, then a high-quality natural milk formula
- No antibiotics, no hormones, ever
- Never irradiated or injected with any substance
- Sold in an uncooked state
- Product of France
- For best taste on fresh products, use or freeze within 3-5 days of receipt; for frozen products, use within 1-2 days after thawing
Cooking & Serving
Sweetbreads must be soaked for several hours, and up to 24 hours, to remove any traces of blood. Cold water can be used, or more traditionally, milk or even buttermilk.
After they are soaked, place sweetbreads in a pot of water and bring to barely a boil. Simmer the sweetbreads briefly (about 5-10 minutes) to firm up the flesh, and then shock in ice water.
Remove any remaining tough membrane, gristle, fat, or veins; best done with your fingers and a small sharp knife. If not removed, these bits will interfere with the creamy texture of sweetbreads.
In classical cooking, the sweetbreads would then be pressed under a heavy weight for at least 2 hours. This can be done under a folded towel on a sheet pan, with another weighted sheet tray on top. The process firms the sweetbreads and presses them into a uniform thickness so they are easy to slice into medallions. This step is not necessary if you are not seeking perfection of appearance.
You can now grill, bread and sear or fry sweetbreads. They are often breaded in order to add crispiness to the creamy, soft texture. Sweetbreads cook quickly and take a nice sear while remaining tender inside. If braising sweetbreads, it is not necessary to poach them in preparation.
Serve with lemons and capers or some acidic sauce to balance the rich creaminess of the sweetbreads.