Thursday, September 27, 2012

Veal Osso Bucco

This was the best meal I've made in ages.  Mark was beside himself with happiness when I served this to him at the dining room table brought this over to the coffee table to eat while we watch Seinfeld reruns.  I saw these veal shanks on sale at the grocery store and this is the only meal that I've ever hear of for veal shanks.  I remember ordering this once when I was out to eat with my parents at a little Italian restaurant in South Philly.  The waitress said that it would take a while to come out and even though I could feel my mom and dad glaring at me, willing me to order some quick pasta dish so that they could eat sooner, I was stubborn and I ordered the Osso Bucco.  It was not a mistake.  This is one of those amazing meals that is great for a special occasion or slow, Sunday dinner.  It isn't heard to make, it just takes a few steps and then slow cooks for 2 1/2 hours.  If you aren't feeling veal, this could also be done with beef or lamb shanks.  This is a great comfort food for cool fall nights and I highly recommend it.
Veal Osso Bucco
2 approximately 0.8 lb. veal shanks
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp. paprika
1 large (or 2 smaller) onions
3 carrots
4 stalks celery
1 can low-sodium diced tomatoes
2 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
1 cup white wine
1 sprig rosemary
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper

1.  If you have kitchen twine, tie up the shanks around the thickest part so that they will hold together while you cook them.  This isn't a crucial step, but I did it.  Then salt and pepper generously on all sides.
2.  Mix together flour and paprika on a plate and pat each side of the shank into the flour, shaking off excess.
3.  Coarsely chop all of the vegetables and dice the rosemary and fine as you can.
4.  Heat olive oil in a dutch oven or other heavy bottom, oven-safe pot over high heat.  When the oil is hot, brown the veal for about 3-4 minutes per side.  Then remove the shanks from the oil.
5.  Turn the heat down to medium and add the vegetables, rosemary, bay leaves and 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper.  Cook for 5 minutes.
6.  Add the wine, stock, and can of tomatoes.  Sprinkle again with and 1/2 tsp. salt.  Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil.
I've specified low-sodium stock and tomatoes in this recipe, because that is what I always use and buy.  Do not sprinkle with more salt in this step if you didn't use low-sodium broth/tomatoes. 

7.  Add the shanks back to the pot and cover.  Put the whole pot into the oven at 350 degrees for 2 1/2 hours.
When you bring it out of the oven, it will look something like this.
8.  Remove the string!!
Serve the shank with polenta or mashed potatoes and a crisp salad.
And of course, plenty of the vegetables and sauce from the pan!
9.  I sprinkled with chopped parsley at the end for a fancy finish.

One Year Ago: Creamy Rice with Squash
Two Years Ago: Shrimp Cobb Salad