Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Mark Bittman's Osso Buco with Gremolata--A Delicious Way to Get Garlic Breath!

This week at I Heart Cooking Clubs we are all about "The Stinking Rose"--yep, the theme is "Garlic Breath!" Any Mark Bittman recipe that features garlic is up for grabs, so I picked one of my very favorite dishes, the Italian classic Osso Buco. With plenty of garlic in the slow cooked veal shanks, as well as garlic in the gremolata topping, it is a delicious way to get your garlic breath on. Since my usual recipe and also the one I order most often at my neighborhood Italian restaurant both have a tomato-based sauce, I was intrigued with Bittman's sauce which features anchovies, garlic and all the flavor from the marrow of those shanks. Served over some fresh egg tagliatelle from the deli case, it is an easy and oh-so-good dinner--the hardest part is waiting for the shanks to cook while smelling that incredible savory aroma.

This recipe can be found in "Mark Bittman's Quick and Easy Recipes From The New York Times" or online at The NYT's website here.

Bittman says, "There is no promise of speed here: osso buco takes time. But this classic Italian dish of glorious, marrow-filled veal shanks (the name means bone with a hole"), braised until they are fork-tender is dead easy to makes and requires a total of no more than fifteen or twenty minutes of attention during it's two hours or so of cooking."

Osso Buco
"Mark Bittman's Quick and Easy Recipes from The New York Times"
(Makes 4 Servings)
Time: At least 2 hours, largely unattended

1 Tbsp olive oil
4 center-cut slices veal shank (2 pounds or more)
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 or 4 cloves garlic, lightly mashed and peeled
4 anchovy fillets
1 cup dry white wine, chicken or beef stock, or water
2 teaspoons butter, optional

Heat a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat for a couple of minutes. Add the oil, swirl it around, and pour out any excess. Add the veal slices and cook until nicely browned on the first side, about 5 minutes. (For even browning, you can rotate the slices, but try not to disturb them too much.) Turn and brown the other side.

When the second side is just about completely browned, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and add the garlic and anchovies to the pan. Cook, stirring a little, until the anchovies dissolve and the garlic browns, about 2 minutes. Add the liquid and let it bubble away for about a minute.

Turn the heat to low and cover the skillet. Five minutes later, check to see that the mixture is simmering -- just a few bubbles appearing at once -- and adjust the heat accordingly. Cook until the meat is very tender and pulling away from the bone, at least 90 minutes and probably somewhat more; turn the slices every half-hour or so. (When the meat is tender, you may turn off the heat and refrigerate the dish for up to 24 hours; reheat gently before proceeding.)

Remove the meat to a warm platter and turn the heat to high. Boil the sauce until it becomes thick and glossy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the butter if you like, and serve the meat with the sauce spooned over it and the gremolata.

Gremolata: Traditionally, osso buco is served with a condiment known as gremolata. To make it mix together 1 tablespoon minced lemon zest, 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley, and 1/4 to 1 teaspoon minced garlic (remember this will not be cooked, so go easy on the garlic).

Notes/Results: Oh my--this is a good one! Savory, garlicky sauce over tender, falling apart veal, with the spark of bright flavor from the gremolata. I made four smallish shanks and wished I had double, as it only got better as leftovers. Although I love my usual tomato-based sauce, this was just as good in it's own way--the sauce was very flavorful and rich. I used a good beef stock for my sauce, and basically doubled the sauce recipe since I was serving it over the egg pasta. Not a quick dish, but a perfectly simple one--rich and satisfying. I will definitely be making this again--actually I may have to make it again this weekend--I am already craving it. ;-)

You can see how the other IHCC peeps got their garlic breath this week by heading to the IHCC site (here) and following the links.



  1. I lobe ossobuco, I love gremolata, but my favorite ossobuso version is with addition of orange skin. Anyway, look tasty.

  2. I might have to serve this to my dad for Father's Day. Maybe over some polenta. He would absolutely die of happiness.

  3. I totally wish I had some garlic breath from sounds amazing! =)

  4. Oh, this looks incredible! I've not had osso buco before, but after I am a new fan of bone marrow. The sauce sounds delicious.

  5. Heaven! One of my favourite slow-cooked dishes. I like this bianco version!

  6. I've been wondering how to prepare those shanks that I see in my butcher's case ... now I know! Thanks for sharing the recipe. I can already smell/taste the garlic, yumm!

  7. Bring on the garlic breath ;-)
    What a comforting dish, Deb! Rich, fall apart meat with a lovely bright gremalota! This definitely sounds like a tasty recipe!

  8. I have never made osso bucco...but I'd like to. As always you have some kick ass meals!

  9. I love a good Osso Buco, with veal or lamb shanks, and haven't made it in awhile. Thanks for the inspiration.

  10. I too have never attempted this dish, though I have been wanting to after watching Giada on FN make it. Great looking photo here. Looks like comfort food to me. I'll have to give it a try now.
    Thanks Deb :)

  11. Deb, you got me right here (pats heart). LOVE Osso Buco, and I gotta say that this version is one of the tastiest I've seen yet. Great job!

  12. Osso Bucco sounds terrific especially with the garlicky gremolata!

  13. WOW! Osso Buco is a fav that I haven't made in a LONG time, but I am so inspired by this recipe! And I even have some local garlic from a farm nearby that is so sweet my hands hardly smell when I peel it! So I'm gonna pour on the garlic and go for it!!! Thanx!

  14. Ooh, Osso Buco is one of our favorites! I last made it for Valentine's Day. Yours looks so good!

  15. This would make a nice Sunday dinner in my house! I am really loving all the garlic - and the gremolata is nice touch.

  16. Osso Bucco is my New Year's Eve tradition. I've got to remember next year to make the gremolata. As always, fabulous photos

  17. Veal sounds tasty right now. Great pictures by the way. :)


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