With the end of holidays approaching I find myself focusing on getting back to my healthy ways. Mind you, I didn’t go crazy but you could say my pants are a bit tight—some would even guess I’m a rodeo star! So back to the straight and narrow I go for the New Year and I’m starting off with something very rustic and hearty. Perfect for warming the cockles of your heart (as we say at home).
Osso Bucco: An Italian dish made of veal shank containing marrowbone, stewed with wine, vegetables and seasonings. Origin: Italian, literally meaning Marrowbone.
4 grass fed veal shanks (about 3 lbs.)
1 medium white onion –sliced
½ lb (225g) shitake mushrooms – sliced
2 cloves garlic – minced
1 28 oz (800ml) can chopped tomatoes
1 bunch baby carrots (10-12 approx) trimmed and washed
1 cup white wine
2 qt (8 cups) low-sodium chicken broth (you may not need all of this broth but better safe than sorry)
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
3 tbsp. olive oil
1lb (450g) Rigatoni pasta
Before I go into how to make this dish let me give you 2 options as to how to cook it. I cooked it on the stove in a deep wok (not very Italian I know, but it works great). As you’ll see below I seared my veal in a grill pan instead of the wok, the reason being I wanted a nice crust on the shanks and with the rounded sides of the wok it’s harder to achieve. Alternatively you can get everything together as directed below and cook it in a Dutch oven and pop it in the oven on 350°F (180°C) or until the meat is tender. Your choice.
Begin by preheating a heavy bottomed sauté pan on high heat.
1. While that’s heating season veal shanks with S&P.
2. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to pan and sear veal for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown. Set aside until needed.
3. In the same pan, add another tbsp. olive oil.
4. Saute the sliced onion, mushroom and garlic on medium heat for 3-4 minutes.
5. Once softened but not colored, add white wine and reduce for 2 minutes.
6. Transfer the onion and wine mixture to Wok or Dutch oven and add in chopped tomatoes, raw carrots, rosemary and veal shanks.
7. Pour in enough chicken broth to cover all ingredients.
8. If using a Wok, cover and simmer on medium-low heat for about 3 hours or until the meat is fork tender, falling off the bone. If using a Dutch oven, cover and cook in the oven for about 1½-2 hours. Check after one hour to make sure there’s enough liquid covering the meat. If not, add in more broth. Cook until fork tender.
9. While osso bucco sauce is finishing, prepare your pasta.
10. Season with S&P to taste.
Remove bones from sauce, discard any excess fat, taste and season to your preference and gently break up the meat with a fork to incorporate into the sauce.
All recipes are made with the finest quality farmers market whole foods, natural and non-processed ingredients.