What a great Fall dinner.
Are you ready to bid farewell to those long hot summer days? Well, I am and there’s nothing nicer than a cool fall day to get me thinking about a more comforting menu to serve to a group of friends who love good food and love to cook.
Nothing screams a Fall recipe, to me, more than a piece of meat with a bone in the middle and that recipe would be Osso Buco. I love cooking any kind of meat with bones and these veal shanks had a small bone in the middle filled with bone marrow and once it was braised and fall off the bone tender, that same bone marrow was delicious smeared on a piece of crusty bread. I knew I wanted to do this recipe since it was the time of the year for our “Fall” dinner and we are even having some cool temperatures to cooperate for the evening.
The evening started with a fig appetizer which was a halved fig topped with shaved parmesan and wrapped in a strip of proscuitto and put in the oven long enough to crisp up the proscuitto and then a drizzle of my Fish Creek, Wisconsin balsamic vinegar (they were on Shark Tank last week), a cocktail which consisted of gin, prosecco, orange juice, rosemary and basil. Next up were plates topped with roasted garlic mashed potatoes and those topped with saucy veal shank pieces that, after hours of cooking, turned into the most wonderful savory dish. Some sauteed haricot vert with peppers finished off the plate and of course some crusty bread to sop up all the juices from the veal and that delicious bone marrow.
We ended the meal with dessert which was this fantastic looking wine poached pear dessert with almond cream (will post soon) and some little wine jelly leaves for a garnish.
There are a lot of recipes on the internet for making Osso Buco but we settled on Giada’s recipe. Our first thought on her use of white wine and chicken broth would be that we would change it to beef broth and red wine like so many of the recipes we had looked at had done but reading further we realized that white wine is a must and so is the chicken stock because they will not overpower the dish and gives you a more delicate elegant taste.
Here is a good article I found on making Osso Buco. We’ll have to start thinking about our Winter meal next; umm, can’t wait to see what that will be.
We didn’t find the whole lamb shanks like Giada used but found them cut in slices (see pic below) so if you find the whole shanks you can decide whether to have them cut to just buy them the way we did.
Sorry about the glare. There were two shanks per package, a larger one and smaller one. We planned on large and small for the guys and small and mediumish for ladies.
Tie outside with twine and dust with flour. See note at bottom of recipe concerning the silver skin tissue around outside.
Brown the shanks 5-6 minutes per side until they start to brown, then remove to platter.
After you remove the browned shanks you will add the celery, onion, and carrot and sautee while scraping up any brown bits left from browning the meat.
After you have sautéed the vegetables, add the shanks back in and add the white wine, tomato paste, chicken stock and bundle of herbs.
For the gremolata the parsley gets finely chopped and then finely minced the lemon zest and mix together. You can also add some garlic or pine nuts if you wish.
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 dry bay leaf
- 2 whole cloves
- Cheesecloth Kitchen twine, for bouquet garni and tying the veal shanks
- 3 whole veal shanks (about 1 pound per shank), trimmed
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- All purpose flour, for dredging
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 small carrot, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 stalk celery, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 3 cups chicken stock
- 3 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 1 bunch Italian parsley, stems removed
- 2 lemon, cut zest off
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced, optional
- Place the rosemary, thyme, bay leaf and cloves into cheesecloth and secure with twine. This will be your bouquet garni.
- For the veal shanks, pat dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture. Veal shanks will brown better when they are dry. Secure the meat to the bone with the kitchen twine. Season each shank with salt and freshly ground pepper. Dredge the shanks in flour, shaking off excess.
- In a large Dutch oven pot, heat vegetable oil until smoking. Add tied veal shanks to the hot pan and brown all sides, about 3 minutes per side. Remove browned shanks and reserve.
- In the same pot, add the onion, carrot and celery. Season with salt at this point to help draw out the moisture from the vegetables. Saute until soft and translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the tomato paste and mix well.
- Return browned shanks to the pan and add the white wine and reduce liquid by half, about 5 minutes. Add the bouquet garni and 2 cups of the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer for about 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is falling off the bone. Check every 15 minutes, turning shanks and adding more chicken stock as necessary. The level of cooking liquid should always be about 3/4 the way up the shank.
- Carefully remove the cooked shanks from the pot and place in decorative serving platter. Cut off the kitchen twine and discard. Remove and discard bouquet garni from the pot. Pour all the juices and sauce from the pot over the shanks. Garnish with germolata.
- Gremolata: To make the germinate, wash and dry the parsley. Chop very fine. either use a zester or cut strips of zest off the lemon and finely mince this and add to the parsley. If you decide to add the garlic, finely mince 1 large clove and mix this with the parsley and lemon zest.
Yum, Yum, Yum.