I wanted to make a nice memorable dinner for our 1st wedding anniversary. Usually our home meals consist of meat and rice, or something with bread or potatoes. Lorenzo had recently purchased an eight quart dutch oven that I had been eyeballing for some time now, and I knew I had to use it for this dinner. I’ve been dying to make Osso Bucco because the meat is so juicy, and tender…it literally falls off the bone. Osso Bucco is braised veal shanks with carrots, celery, onions and tomatoes. It’s a great peasant dish, and also it was my first attempt at making this dish. I did my research on the best recipe to use, and best place to get the specialty meat, center-cut veal shanks. I even contacted my April knottie chef, Gerrie, to go over the details and my anixety of cooking a new dish. I invited our fave double date couple, Adrian and Monica, over to share the meal, too. They brought over the same exact bottle of wine that we drank on our wedding day, Hess Collection Wine from Mount Veeder – 2006. Overall, the dish was wonderful, and every bite was savory and delicious! It wasn’t that hard to prepare, but a tasty dish worth every effort!
Osso Bucco & Risotto Milanese
Adapted from “Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking” & “Joy of Cooking”
**Using my wonderful new 8 quart Dutch Oven**
6 veal shanks
Salt and pepper
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 Tbsp butter
1 cup diced onion
2/3 cup diced carrot
2/3 cup diced celery
1 cup dry white wine
2 strips lemon zest
1 cup chicken stock
1 1/2 cup tomatoes in juices
1 tsp fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
3 – 4 parsley sprigs
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1/4 tsp finely minced garlic
1 Tbsp minced Italian parsley
Some notes from Marcella Hazan:- Veal shanks are best no thicker than 1 1/2 inches, otherwise they will not cook evenly.- Do not remove the white skin/membrane around shank, it adds flavor and creaminess to the dish. Make sure you allot enough time for the meat to cook, at least 2 to 3 hours for cooking.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Tie each shank tightly with a piece of cooking twine to prevent them from falling apart during cooking. Season the shanks with salt & pepper. Flour both sides of the veal shank and pat off the excess.
2. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Sear the shanks on both sides until a brown crust forms, remove to a plate and set aside.
3. Turn down the heat to medium and add 4 tablespoons of butter to the Dutch oven. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and cook until the vegetables have softened. Add the wine and cook until it no longer smells alcoholic.
4. Nestle the shanks back into the vegetables. Add the lemon zest, chicken stock, tomatoes, thyme, bay leaf, and parsley. Bring the contents to a simmer, cover, and transfer to the oven.
5. Let it cook in the oven for about 2 – 3 hours or until the shanks are fork tender. Baste the shanks by basting the cooking liquid over them every 20 – 30 minutes.
6. If the pot is getting too dry, add a few tablespoons of water.
Optional step: After the shanks are done, carefully remove them from the pot and set aside on a plate. Puree the contents in the pot (the veggies and braising liquid) with an immersion blender for a more uniform sauce. Serve the osso buco over risotto Milanese. Carefully snip the twine around the shank and spoon the sauce over it. Top with a spoonful of the gremolada.
Adapted from “Joy of Cooking”
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp butter
1/4 medium onion, finely diced
2 cups Arborio rice
A small pinch of saffron threads
1/4 cup hot water
1/4 cup dry white wine
3 cups chicken stock
1 Tbsp cold butter
1 1/2 cups grated Parmigiano Reggiano
Note:- Do not rinse the rice, the starches on the outside of the grains is what makes the risotto creamy.- The chicken stock must be hot when you add it to the rice, so keep it in a saucepan on low heat on the stove while you’re cooking. – Add the saffron threads to the hot water and let it steep.
1. Heat the olive oil and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until softened. Add the rice and cook until the rice is coated with fat and starts to turn translucent around the edges.
2. Lower the heat to medium low, add the wine and cook while stirring until the wine has been absorbed. Add one cup of the chicken stock, keeping it at a simmer, and cook uncovered while stirring constantly until almost all of the liquid as absorbed.
3. Add the chicken stock about 1/3 cup at a time until the liquid is absorbed. Keep it at a low simmer, and cook the rice while stirring constantly.
4. About 15 minutes in, after the chicken stock has been absorbed, add the saffron water (threads too) and continue to cook and stir. If you start running low on chicken stock, go ahead and use hot water or more chicken stock. Continue adding ladlefuls of broth, waiting until each addition has been almost absorbed before adding more.
5. Cook while constantly stirring until the rice is al dente, fully cooked but still retains a chew in the center. Take off heat and stir in a tablespoon of cold butter and grated Parmigiano.
Clearly a hearty dish that we ate to the bones!!!!!!! **TIP, save the bones for stock!***