This is a new one me, people. After hearing it described by boyfriend who has had this stew before, I just had to look it up. If he says it’s good, then it must be fantastic. My only problem is his Sicilian grandmother is no longer around to visit and learn some of these recipes he has grown up with.
I will say this, figuring out the spelling wasn’t easy but I am glad that Google is predictive in Chrome to help me out. I wasn’t far off on the spelling. 😀
Now, down to the subject at hand. 😉 Ossobuco (or osso buco) is essentially a stew made from the braised veal shank. The original version is made without tomatoes in it while the modern version does. The seasonings are also different between the two with the original containing cinnamon. Both variations come from Milan.
There isn’t a whole lot about Ossobuco. All I could find was that it may have started as a farmer’s dish then moved to a popular restaurant in the 19th century. What I could find is this is generally served with a type of risotto to make it a complete meal. In other countries, it can be served with polenta, or even mashed potatoes.
What my wonderful boyfriend has said, it doesn’t have to be made from just veal. You use any arm roast or protein that you deem fit. Imagine a whole chicken or even some deer meat braised with all the delectable seasonings on top of rice or pasta. It makes my tummy rumble just thinking about it.
On to the recipe!
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 dry bay leaf
2 whole cloves
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
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 a 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 chopped parsley and lemon zest.
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