Man it was cold in Columbus today! I had the day off so I hit the international store; picked up everything I needed and made some good ole fashion osso buco. That’s right, I kicked it way up Italian style to beat the winter bliss and it was worth it!
os·so bu·co ˈäsō ˈbo͞okō/ osso buco is an Italian dish which is made with braised veal shanks, cooked bone-in with the marrow intact. The result is a rich, flavorful dish with tender meat and well seasoned bone marrow, a meat product which is regarded as a special treat in many regions of the world. Osso buco can be eaten alone like a stew, or served with rice or risotto. It is especially popular in Northern Italy, and it is often sold as ossobuco alla Milanese, in a reference to a city where it is commonly served. The shank is an interesting cut of meat because it has a great deal of flavor, but it is also very chewy and stringy because it comes from the upper portion of the leg, a part of a cow which sees a great deal of work during the cow’s lifetime. Shanks tend to do best when they are cooked slowly at low heat, gently dissolving the connective tissue of the meat to make it extremely tender. The slow cooking also allows the beef to develop layers of flavor, and when lots of liquid is used, the osso buco will be very moist and tender when it is finished.
http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-osso-buco.htm – internet source
Osso Bucco with Gremolata and Arborio Risotto
4 Meaty Veal Shanks (or more if you’d like)
Kosher or sea salt & black pepper
4 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Cup Onion, chopped
1/2 Cup Celery, chopped
1/2 Cup Carrot, chopped
3 Fresh roma tomatoes, quartered
4 to 6 Cups Chicken Stock (how ever much it takes)
1 Cup red wine, (or white if you prefer), non expensive
3 Bay leafs
1 teaspoon Fresh Rosemary, minced
1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme, minced
Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. Liberally season shanks on all sides with salt & pepper. Get a large skillet very, very hot, add the extra virgin olive oil and immediately add the shanks. Brown very well on all sides; remove and place in roasting pan or baking dish. Add the mire poix (onion, carrots, celery), and cook until tender, scraping any brownings from the bottom of the skillet. Add tomatoes and a little salt, cook for 2 minutes, or until the tomatoes start to break down a bit.
Add wine and cook until the alcohol burns off. Add herbs and some of the chicken stock, the goal is to cover the shanks. Transfer to roasting pan and cover with a tight fitting lid and place in the oven. Braise for 2 1/2-3 hours. Make sure meat is very tender while still having some texture to the meat. Remove the meat and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper if needed. Sprinkle each shank with a little Gremolata (recipe below) just before serving. Serve with the traditional Risotto Milanese.
2 tsp Lemon Zest, minced
2 tsp Garlic, minced
2 tsp Italian Parsley, chiffonade
Mix ingredients together.
2 Tbsp Garlic, minced
1 Cup Orzo
3/4 Cup of the braising liquid from the shanks (before reduction)
2-3 Cups Chicken Stock, or more if needed
1/4 Cup Parmesan
Heat oil and butter in a large skillet or sauté pan, add the onion and garlic and sweat until tender. Add the Arborio to the pan and cook, stirring often until it starts to brown, without burning the butter, Add some braising liquid to the pan, Cook until the liquid is completely absorbed into the rice. Add stock, 1/2 Cup at a time, waiting until absorbed before adding more. Keep adding stock until the rice is cooked to desired taste. Stir in the parmesan and diced roma, adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper and serve.