Jim and I splurged last month to purchase two beautiful veal shanks from the grocery store to remake one of Italy's most renowned braises: osso buco. It's a classic Milanese dish cooked in a rich broth that includes tomato and wine. The dish is finished with lemon zest and parsley, which stand in for the more common gremolata that often accompanies it, along with a creamy polenta. The term ossobuco roughly translates to "hole in the bone" or "pierced bone." Once cooked, don't forget to dig into the amazing bone marrow!
Epicurious. In addition to the two 14 ounce veal shanks, I gathered:
1/2 c vegetable oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 celery ribs, diced
1 yellow onion, diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup dry red wine
2 cups veal stock
2 cups chicken stock
3 cups canned plum tomatoes, drained and crushed
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 t dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
I can't say why I don't have pictures beyond this point because I remember setting up the shots. I was so ecstatic to take pictures of our tiny espresso spoons being used to remove the bone marrow. The sauce looked completely amazing on top of the creamy polenta. I am just sick that the pictures seemed to vanish from my camera!
You will just have to imagine with me.
After 2 1/2 hours of cooking, carefully remove the veal shanks from the pot and set aside. The meat will definitely be falling off the bone. I had to use a combinations of tongs and a spatula to get the meat out in one piece. Next, I strained the braising liquid and discarded the herbs. Bring the liquid to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce the heat, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until reduced by a quarter. Using a skimmer or large spoon, skim off any grease or foam that rises to the surface. Return the strained vegetables and the veal shanks to the liquid and taste for seasoning.
To serve, cut and discard the twine, put a single osso buco (veal shank) in a bowl, and ladle about 3/4 cup of the sauce and vegetables over it. I made a super creamy polenta by adding 1/2 cup of cream cheese to the hot polenta and put that on the plate first, topped with the osso buco and then topped with a ladle of rich sauce and chunky vegetables. Garnish each osso buco with the lemon zest, and chopped parsley and season with pepper. It was TO. DIE. FOR. I can't wait until the next time we splurg and I can make this again, and hopefully get the pictures of the finished product posted.