Sweetbread, fava beans, ceps and pasta
I have a love-hate relationship with offal. I have never eaten brains, testacles or heart and do not intend to either. I did have to change my attitude to duck hearts, though, so who knows. But kidney, liver and sweetbread I do like.
Offal is rather perishable so you need to buy it fresh from a reputable shop.
On one of my weekly visits to a small meat producer on the market in Mirepoix, la ferme de Guillemot had some ris de veau, sealed in plastic. I did not hesitate and bought it.
At home, I first washed the sweetbread and then removed some left-over bits of blood as well as some whitish veil. Then I soaked them in cold water for about an hour, this allows the rest of the blood and impurities to get out of the meat.
Meanwhile I also soaked some dried ceps and started to pod the broad beans.
After that I put two pans of water on the gas, with some salt, and I prepared two bowls of cold water. I blanched the sweetbreads in one pan with cooking water (turning the heat to a simmer) and the beans in another. After two minutes, I drained the beans and put them in cold water. After five minutes, I did the same with the sweetbread.
I dried and cleaned the sweetbread and sliced them up.
I drained the beans and double-podded them by squeezing slightly on the skins.
I prepared another pan with boiling water and cooked casareccia pasta for 12 minutes.
Meanwhile I drained the ceps and patted them dry, keeping the soaking liquid for another use. I chopped some parsley.
With all the ingredients prepared, I put a large skillet on the gas with a knob of butter and browned the pieces of sweetbread on all sides, then I added the beans, ceps and pasta and stirred. I added some of the soaking liquid and continued cooking and stirring. Then I took it off the heat and added the parsley.