Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Veal Osso Bucco

As with my recent braised short rib recipe, there's not much more to be said.  This is perhaps the ultimate comfort food.  Prep is easy.  All time is front loaded - and then you let these bubble on the stove for 8-10 hours.  The lower and slower the better.  You'll not find a better food to accompany just about any red wine.

Veal Osso Bucco

2 Large Veal Shanks 
1 carrot diced
1 sweet onion diced
1 celery stalk diced
3 salt packed anchovies, rinsed and chopped
3 oz. dried porcini with broth
1 can diced tomatoes (12 ounces)
16 oz. beef stock
Salt, Pepper, Olive Oil
1 can tomato paste 

In a heavy bottomed pot, warm a little olive oil and brown the veal shanks.  Don't be shy about browning them. You want to develop some good color.  Season the meat while browning and when done remove to plate.   

Here's the first browned shank.  Note the color, and the amount of delicious marrow in the bone.

Once the meat is browned, you want to begin sauteing the vegetables and the anchovies.  Saute for 3-5 minutes until they begin to soften and scrape up the brown bits as you go.  You'll need a splash of white wine to finish deglazing the pot.   

The "Soffrito" including the Anchovy, ready to be sauteed.

Once the vegetables are softened and all the browned bits are scraped from the bottom of the pot, season with salt and pepper and return the Veal Shanks to the pot.  Add the diced tomatoes, the reconstituted porcini with their broth and the beef stock. Reduce the heat to a bare simmer. 

Simmer uncovered until you're ready to serve.  I would expect that the minimum cooking time to get fork, tender fall off the bone shanks is 6 hours.  When I made this batch, it was closer to 8.  They were fork tender and succulent. 

These are the shanks after approximately 4 hours simmering.

As a side dish, I prepared some gnocchi.  After they were cooked, I drained them and then "toasted" them in a pan with some olive oil and garlic.  I used these as a bed for the Osso Bucco and all the delicious sauce as a condiment.  Just before serving, you will likely want to thicken the sauce.  Remove the shanks to a plate, and stir in tomato paste a little at a time until you get your desired consistency.  I used about half the can.   

Veal Shank Osso Bucco over "Toasted" Gnocchi

Allora.......

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