Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Variations on Osso Bucco

I used to use the recipe from Australia Women Weekly's Italian Cookbook, but have since added my own editions and changes to it, making it my own. It is very easy, and I've also created 2 additional variations on how to cook Osso Bucco below the recipe.

Classic Osso Bucco

6-8 pieces of veal shank
Flour mixed with Salt and Pepper
3 or 4 Carrots, peeled and cubed (small)
2 Celery, cubed (small)
2 Onions, cubed (small)
3 cloves garlic, minced
3/4C Red Wine
2C Beef Broth (home made, or even better, home made veal stock!! Chicken stock is okay too if you don't have beef broth)
1 Large Can Tomatoes, either whole peeled or crushed (San Marzano is a good type of tomatoes).
2-3 Bay Leaves
Sprigs of Thyme or Rosemary etc.

1. Preheat oven to 350C/180F.

2. Coat veal in flour, shake off excess and fry (have to do it right before you fry it, or the flour gets soggy) till brown on both sides including border.

3. After you've browned all the veal shanks, saute carrots, celery and onions for about 5-10 minutes till soft on medium heat, then add garlic and saute for another 1-2 minutes.

4. Add wine to deglaze pan and boil for till reduced by half. Then add broth, then add tomatoes. Then add bay leaves, and herbs (in bouquet garnier), return veal shanks into pot and bring to boil.

5. Once boiling, cover and put in oven for 2-3 hours. If using cast iron cookware (ie le creuset), place sheet of parchment paper over pot before covering, so that it doesn't burn the top of the lid and dry out the meat. Meat should be spoon tender melt in your mouth good!

Osso Bucco out of the oven and simmering over the flame before being served.

SERVE with Gremolata (recipe below) to accompany the meat, Risotto Milanese (Saffron Risotto) or Rice Pilaf or plain white rice with Grilled Vegetables.


Zest of 1-2 Lemon
Lots of Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped
3-4 garlic, minced.

Ratio should be 3-2-1 (parsley - zest- garlic) but taste it yourself to see how you like it. I like lots of garlic in mine. Put in bowl and pass around table, sprinkling it on top of the osso bucco right before you eat it.


1) Osso Bucco Milanese:

Omit tomato sauce, use Red wine and add more broth- it's a deep, richer sauce that's more robust from the red wine. Make sure you use a good red wine and serve the same wine with the Osso Bucco during dinner. I would suggest a good bordeaux or merlot.

2) Osso Bucco a la Triestina:

Omit tomatoe sauce and use White wine and more broth. When it's done, take out meat, then add in zest of 1 lemon and 3-4 anchovies, mashed (watch your salt after because it might be too salty). The white wine produces a lighter and creamier sauce and the anchovies give it a subtle flavour. I think this is by far my favorite way to cook osso bucco.

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