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Recipe File

Osso Buco

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Slow cooking meats with a lot of connective tissue can transform a usually tough and unpleasant cut into an amazingly succulent masterpiece. Osso buco is a great example of a long braising process that showcases three great flavors and textures - flavorful beef, unctuous gelatin, and savory marrow.

Assemble the ingredients: 4 to 6 veal shanks (about 12 ounces each), about 4 cups chicken broth (2 14-ounce cans is good enough), 12 oz. dry white wine (such as a chardonnay), 1 large onion, 1 large carrot, 2 large garlic cloves, 3 bay leaves, 2 medium celery sticks, and a 14.5-oz. can of diced tomatoes (drained). Sometimes getting a hold of veal shanks can be difficult. While preparing this recipe for photographing, I was only able to get veal shanks at one of the three Whole Foods Markets near where I live (and I had to try three times that week). I generally recommend getting 12 ounce veal shanks, but when the markets don't have much selection, get whatever you can. In my case, 3 smaller pieces and two larger cuts were all that were available, so I bought them all (leaving none for the next guy trying to find veal shanks to photograph). You can also use beef shanks (which is usually about 1/3 the price of veal) which will require about 20 min. longer braising time.


Finely dice the onion, celery, and carrots. Mince the garlic cloves.


Salt and pepper the veal shanks. You can tie up the shanks to help keep the pieces stay intact (as shown in the picture), but I usually don't bother.


Begin to preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).

Melt 4 tablespoons butter over low heat in a Dutch oven or wide stock pot.


Raise the heat to medium and brown the veal shanks by setting them into the pan and not moving them for five minutes. Flip the shanks over and brown the other side for five more minutes.


After browning both sides, remove the shanks and set aside in a large plate.


Add the diced onions to the pot and stir until golden brown. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to help deglaze the pot. If you don't get all the fond (the browned pieces of meat stuck to the pan) off, don't worry, the rest of it will come off easily when we add the wine.


After about five minutes of stirring, the onions should be golden brown. Add the carrots and celery to the onions and stir until softened and celery is slightly translucent, about five more minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for one more minute.


Pour in the dry white wine and increase the heat to medium high. Bring the mixture up to a full simmer. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, scrape off any remaining bits of fond from the pot. Simmer until the wine has reduced by about half.


Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, and bay leaves to the pot. Stir so it's evenly mixed and let it come back up to a simmer.


Add the browned veal shanks to the pot. Make sure the open end (or larger opening) of each bone is facing up so the marrow doesn't fall out during braising. The liquid should come up to almost cover the shanks. Bring it back up to a full simmer.


Cover the pot and place it into the oven. Braise until the meat is almost falling off the bone, about 2 hours.


While the osso buco is braising, prepare the gremolata. Gather about ten sprigs of parsley (about 15 g), 1 clove of garlic, and a lemon.


Mince the garlic and parsley. Zest the whole lemon.


Mix together and set aside in the refrigerator to chill as the osso buco finishes. (Gremolata is a traditional garnish for osso buco, but can also be stirred into the sauce just before serving.)


Remove the pot from the oven (while wearing oven mitts) and check the meat. If it's not soft and practically falling apart, put it back in the oven for another ten minutes and check again. Remove the shanks from the pot and set aside on a warm plate to await service. If any marrow falls out of the bone, just scoop it up with a spoon and deposit it back into its hole.


Boil the liquid in the pot to reduce it to a sauce. Stir in salt and pepper to taste. You can add a cornstarch slurry to help thicken the sauce (just mix 1 heaping teaspoon of cornstarch with a couple teaspoons of water and stir the mixture into the boiling liquid). The sauce should be thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon that is dipped into it.


Place a veal shank onto a plate and serve with sauce and gremolata on top.



Osso Buco (serves 6)
Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C)
6 12-oz. (340 g) veal shanksseasonbrown both sides (5 min. each)set asidebring to simmmerbraise in oven for 2 hoursplate
salt & pepper
4 Tbs. (55 g) buttermeltsaute until golden brownsaute until tendersaute 1 min.simmer until reduced by 1/2stir insimmer until thickened to sauce
1 large (250 g) onion
1 large (100 g) carrot
2 medium (70 g) celery sticks
2 large (15 g) garlic cloves
12 oz. (355 g) dry white wine
14.5-oz. (410 g) can of diced tomatoes (drained)
about 4 cups (900-1000 mL) chicken broth
3 bay leaves
cornstarch slurry
salt & pepper
(Due to a known bug in Firefox when rendering border collapsed tables, I have highlighted in different colors the action and ingredient of rows/columns that are rendered improperly. See first comment below.)

Gremolata
1 clove garlicmincemixchill
1 medium lemonzest
10 sprigs (15 g) parsleymince

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Written by Michael Chu
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89 comments on Osso Buco:(Post a comment)

On December 22, 2006 at 08:17 PM, Michael Chu said...
For Firefox users, this is how the recipe table looks in IE:
<img src="http://www.cookingforengineers.com/pics3/ossobuco_trn.gif" width="633" height="297" border="2" />


On December 22, 2006 at 08:53 PM, BlackGriffen (guest) said...
Subject: Iron Chef
Did you post this because both Flay and Batali did osso buco last night on Iron Chef? I don't remember if Flay used veal or venison, but I know that Mario used turkey.

I wonder if you can do this with just about any cross cut animal leg?


On December 22, 2006 at 09:43 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I just made some osso bucco last night. I used a recipe from simplyrecipes, which called for first rendering fat from pancetta & then browning the shanks in that. Quite a tasty addition.

Also, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" advises using hind shanks--these have smaller bones & the meat adheres to them quite well. I was able to find two hind shanks and two fore shanks when I made mine the other night & I have to agree with Julia. She also writes that shanks freeze well for several weeks, so you can gradually build a big enough collection to make it with hind shanks.


On December 23, 2006 at 12:10 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Iron Chef
BlackGriffen wrote:
Did you post this because both Flay and Batali did osso buco last night on Iron Chef? I don't remember if Flay used veal or venison, but I know that Mario used turkey.

No, that is just lucky timing. I prepped and photographed the osso buco about two weeks ago and have been too busy reading article submissions and working on Fanpop to write it up earlier.

BlackGriffen wrote:
I wonder if you can do this with just about any cross cut animal leg?

Slow braising often works on shanks as a technique to extract as much gelatin from the bone and connective tissue as possible. This "loosens" up the meat and coats the fibers and makes it into the dish that we love so much. I wonder how it turned out since Iron Chef doesn't give them much time to cook.


On December 23, 2006 at 01:43 PM, fabio_vr said...
Subject: Ossobuco
the correct spelling is one word: ossobuco, just a detail. It means bone with a hole, and sounds to be a reasonable name.

It is a very popular dish in Italy, or better used to be: this kind of meat used to be cheap, and available to everybody. It is part of the culinary traditions of northern Italy, even if it used to be prepared in the south as well (using different kind of meats, or even beef tail like in Rome): the use of tomatoes i s more tipical in the south.

The city where it became very popular is Milan: now you can see it served even in five star restaurants, where it used to be served more in canteens or very cheap restaurants.
Keep in mind that availability of frist class cuts at affordable prices (or incomes high enough to be able to afford it) are very recent hitory overhere: mid sixties, with the birth of the major industries. Before everybody was using second or third class cuts, wich now have almost disaperared, but which gave birth to extraordinary dishes.

To have an ossobuco alla milanese, just leave the tomatoes away, and place the veal ossobuco on risotto alla milanese (a safran flavoured rice, if you want I can quickly post a recipe)

Merry Christmas from Verona (Italy)


On December 24, 2006 at 02:01 PM, Lintballoon said...
Subject: Fabulous!
What a fantastic and traditional recipe to see here! I have attempted Ossobuco before with disappointing results. Probably didn't stew the meat long enough.
I believe that the combination of carrots, celery and onions is called mirepoix.
I think you could follow this recipe when preparing oxtail (soup/stew) as well.
Thanks again, Michael.


On December 27, 2006 at 09:54 AM, Calvin (guest) said...
Awesome. I have the same plate (the one in the final picture) as you do! :)

Anyway, those shanks look a lot like the "soup bones" that I see at Safeway. They are among the cheapest meats in the store. One time, I tried to cook it and eat it as if it was steak. That didn't turn out too well as it was really chewy.

How well do you think they'll work in this recipe?


On December 27, 2006 at 12:26 PM, Michael Chu said...
Calvin wrote:
Anyway, those shanks look a lot like the "soup bones" that I see at Safeway. They are among the cheapest meats in the store. One time, I tried to cook it and eat it as if it was steak. That didn't turn out too well as it was really chewy.

How well do you think they'll work in this recipe?

Many tough and chewy cuts can turn out amazingly tender and flavorful is cooked with a long braising method such as the one used in this recipe. I have no doubt that cooking it in a flavorful liquid for a few hours will do wonders to the "soup bones".


On January 01, 2007 at 12:00 PM, MeMeMe! (guest) said...
I do the same, but I use a pressure cooker, and it cuts the cooking time to about 30 minutes instead.


On January 03, 2007 at 09:09 PM, an anonymous reader said...
A local restaurant chain has Ossobuco on the menu but it is made with pork shanks and the results are delicious.

http://www.alehouseinc.com/index.htm


On January 04, 2007 at 02:50 AM, GaryProtein said...
My brother was a guest at an EXTREMELY expensive Italian restaurant in NYC where he had Osso Buco. He said it was the best he ever had and spoke to the chef. The chef explained to him that a cow has exactly two premium cuts of osso buco. They are from the head of the femur of each rear leg where it fits into the acetabulum. When you typically get Osso Buco, you can look through the bone once you have sucked out (or more elegantly spooned out) the narrow. However, in these two pieces from the cow, the bone resembles a cup where you can only scoop out the marrow because it comes from the end of the bone.

Has anybody else heard this? Is there really a difference?


On January 07, 2007 at 04:22 AM, The One True Josh (guest) said...
Subject: Awsome
I made this tonight (served it with saffron rice) and it was amazing. I'm increasingly in love with braised meats, because they come out so tender and fantastic, but really require very little effort. My wife was a little creeped out by the sauce ("Looks kinda vomitous..."), but after the first bite she was sold.

AJ's in Phoenix almost always has veal shanks. I usually have to go to the mexican carneceria to find beefs shanks. They're sometimes questionable in quality, but they make an OK stock. Anyone know a really good butcher in the phoenix area? I live in the east valley, but I'll drive anywhere.

For dessert I made the chocolate pecan pie. A great night. Love your site.


On January 07, 2007 at 07:47 PM, joesix (guest) said...
Subject: Veal -> Beef Shanks: Flavor
Michael wrote:
"You can also use beef shanks (which is also 1/3 the price
of veal)"

Hmmm, more flavor, cheaper. What's not to like?
The slightly longer cooking time is insignificant compared to
the overall effort to make this recipe.

Why chicken broth rather than beef broth? Wouldn't
beef broth add more bold beef flavor?

We've got to make this for dinner tonight. Thanks for the
article.


On January 21, 2007 at 09:10 PM, dickrebel said...
Subject: Ossobucco Milanese
This recipe is v.similar to the one in Silver Spoon for ossobucco milanese, but they are dredged in flour before browning then simmered stovetop and cooked for far less time. I think your method probably yeilds better results, although I probably will dredge them in flour as I remember my mimi doing this.

I am off to Citarella in hopes the butcher actually remembered to order my shanks. This stuff is amazingly hard to get ahold of. I don't know why, and neither does the butcher (well, meat counter worker).


On January 24, 2007 at 09:22 PM, Kyle (guest) said...
Subject: Ossibuchi
Quote:
This recipe is v.similar to the one in Silver Spoon for ossobucco milanese, but they are dredged in flour before browning then simmered stovetop and cooked for far less time. I think your method probably yeilds better results, although I probably will dredge them in flour as I remember my mimi doing this.

<BR>
Dredging in flour and browning was more necessary in the past, when the meat was tougher. I still prefer to dredge and brown because I like the flavor and texture it imparts. As for cooking times, they depend upon your meat, and you are free to increase them if you want.

Kyle


On January 25, 2007 at 10:29 PM, Joan Wade said...
I have been doing a little perusing since I plan to make ossobuco for a party. I find the vast majority use white wine, but a few red, and was surprised to see Emeril using red on his show. Now am in a quandry. Emeril's was finished with orzo the last 20 minutes. Am very impressed by your recipe and directions. I guess I am asking what is behind the pros and the cons?


On January 26, 2007 at 04:12 AM, Michael Chu said...
Joan Wade wrote:
I guess I am asking what is behind the pros and the cons [for using red or white wine]?

Using red wine (like a Cabernet Savignon) tends to produce a very potent sauce. After the sauce is reduced, the flavor is very strong - which I find works really well with other brasied dishes (like short ribs), but for osso buco, the white wine provides a delicate flavor that doesn't overpower the natural flavoring of the shanks, broth, aromatics, and tomato in the sauce. Osso buco sauce should not be too strongly flavored, but should be a gentle blend of the ingredients.


On January 27, 2007 at 03:43 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Great recipe. The tomatoes tend to overpower the dish - a nice variation is to use the recipe but only use a tablespoon or two or tomato paste. Makes for a slightly different version.


On February 24, 2007 at 03:58 AM, Joan Wade said...
I have made Wolfert's ossobuco for 4, and it was fabulous. Now I plan to make it again, but for a larger group of 8 - scary from my tiny kitchen. I wonder what you would think about making it the day before ... perhaps not braising until complete done? Or what? I am going to have to do it in two 5.5 qt. 'dutch-ovens' braising in one oven - a good puzzle for you analytical engineers! Somehow, am going to have to transfer the meat so can get to the reduction of sauce, etc. All this I would like to have done before the guests arrive? I know - you will say -forget the ossobuco and just roast three chickens and be done with it. It's a puzzlement. joan


On March 01, 2007 at 10:21 PM, Michael Chu said...
Joan Wade wrote:
I have made Wolfert's ossobuco for 4, and it was fabulous. Now I plan to make it again, but for a larger group of 8 - scary from my tiny kitchen. I wonder what you would think about making it the day before ... perhaps not braising until complete done? Or what? I am going to have to do it in two 5.5 qt. 'dutch-ovens' braising in one oven - a good puzzle for you analytical engineers! Somehow, am going to have to transfer the meat so can get to the reduction of sauce, etc. All this I would like to have done before the guests arrive? I know - you will say -forget the ossobuco and just roast three chickens and be done with it. It's a puzzlement. joan

I would braise it until it was completely done, remove the meat, let it cool, wrap the container in plastic wrap and refrigerate. (Do that for both Dutch ovens, one after the other if you don't have the space in your oven to put them in side by side or double stack). Then remove the fat from the liquid, combine the juices and set aside for the day of the event. Reheat the osso buco by putting all the meat in the pot with the juice and baking for another 30-40 minutes to get it nice and hot. Remove the meat and make the sauce. (Truthfully, if I were doing this, I'd skip the oven reheat and just microwave the osso buco to speed things up. You only need to reheat it since a great deal of the collagen has been transformed into gelatin during the long braise - microwaving won't hurt the taste or texture of the dish at this point.)


On March 01, 2007 at 10:37 PM, JoanWade (guest) said...
Subject: osso buco
Thanks so much Michael !! Your sound advice always bails me out! Am serving Barolo - Serralunga - 2001. I know the osso will be wonderful, thanks to you, and will share the kudos. Joan


On April 17, 2007 at 07:53 AM, kali said...
Subject: PORK OSSO BUCCO
I made osso bucco with pork shanks this weekend, following a recipe very similar to the one above, and it was a real hit (or so everyone said - but even if they were just being polite, I thought it was really very good). Quite a lot of people do not eat veal, so this is a good alternative.

pork shanks are quite cheap here (south africa), going for between $3 and 5 (US) per kilogram, so this is a very good budget meal for us.

I bought mine from a german deli that usually pickles and smokes them. Some of the cuts were really huge, so I suspect it came from the hind leg. I'm not sure whether that makes a difference or whether one should only use meat from the front shanks (size-wise). I bought 4 shanks and it was enough for 10 people!

The big pieces were also not holding together that well, and it didn't look as if tying them as suggested would have helped, so I ended up cutting the loose outer bits into chunks, and keeping the big bones with the meat clinging to it intact. So we ended up with more of a stew than a single piece per person, but that did not seem to detract from the overall taste, although of course it did not look authentic.

But seeing as osso bucco stands for 'hollow bone', I guess it can still be called that!

Thanks for a great site.


On June 21, 2007 at 03:21 PM, Judy (guest) said...
Subject: Chevon Osobuco
Your recipe is of great interest to me as we raise Boer meat goats & retail the meat from our farm and at a local Farmers Market.
I recently had a kid processed and was delighted with the packages of Osobuco. Would you recommend that I make any adjustments to your recipe because I am using kid as opposed to veal ? Boer Goat meat is mild and the osobuco is small..
Happy to have discovered your site.
Thank you,
Judy


On June 21, 2007 at 03:53 PM, kali said...
Subject: Boer goat osobuco
Judy - I understand that your question is directed to Michael, but you've made me curious - are you in RSA, and if so, any chance of being near Cape Town? I've never tried goat meat but would love to if I could lay my hands on some. Is the taste similar to mutton/lamb?


On June 21, 2007 at 06:30 PM, Judy (guest) said...
Subject: Goat (Chevon) meat
Hi Kali..
We are in Maine. Northern New England.
We really enjoy our goat meat. It is much milder than Lamb. The Boer breed is raised specificaly for meat production. It really cannot be compared to a dairy breed of goat. Very much a health food, it is low in saturated fat & cholesterol,at the same time high in protien.
Learning to cook with it has been exciting. I give out samples at the Farmers Market every week which is how I happened to find this site. Always searching ! :)
Judy


On June 22, 2007 at 08:36 AM, Michael Chu said...
Unfortunately, I've never had the opportunity to cook a kid/goat. My guess is that not much recipe alteration is necessary since it's a long braise - it's hard to over braise. The key is to cook it long enough that although the proteins are all tight and coagulated, the collagen has had ample time to reconfigure into unctuous gelatin. Anyone else know if the recipe needs modification for a kid?


On September 18, 2007 at 09:40 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Osso buco on a stove?
Hi Michael,

I don't have an oven but I would still like to try this recipe. Would it be possible for me to cook this on a stove top at a very low fire?

Thank you.


On September 19, 2007 at 12:50 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Osso buco on a stove?
Anonymous wrote:
I don't have an oven but I would still like to try this recipe. Would it be possible for me to cook this on a stove top at a very low fire?

Yes, low and slow.


On September 23, 2007 at 05:07 AM, vivien (guest) said...
Subject: osso bucco
Am looking forward to trying your recipe--have done osso bucco with the pressure cooker but have not tried the oven braising. Can you suggest a full menu to go along with the osso bucco? Have not had much success with risotto, so I would probably stay away from it.


On September 23, 2007 at 07:45 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: osso bucco
vivien wrote:
Have not had much success with risotto, so I would probably stay away from it.

I've found that using orzo instead of arborio rice is easier to handle when you can't really pay attention. You can modify the Orzo Risotto recipe to fit your needs.


On October 01, 2007 at 03:01 AM, EngineeringProfessor said...
Subject: Re: Iron Chef
BlackGriffen wrote:
Did you post this because both Flay and Batali did osso buco last night on Iron Chef? I don't remember if Flay used veal or venison, but I know that Mario used turkey.

I wonder if you can do this with just about any cross cut animal leg?


I had pork Osso Buco at the Disney Hilton last Friday. Simply delicious. I have noticed that "shanks" are either sliced (as Michael has in his recipe) or with the long (shank) bone ending in a globular piece of meat, not unlike a turkey leg. The cooked bone sticks up with the meaty end resting in the sauce. I personally prefer that presentation to that of the slices.

Examples:

http://static.flickr.com/116/304510203_6893056aa6.jpg
http://images.jupiterimages.com/common/detail/91/46/23044691.jpg[/img]


On October 04, 2007 at 06:30 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Thanks. I'll try it on the stove top soon.


On October 05, 2007 at 03:03 PM, Judy (guest) said...
Subject: Osobucco
Osobucco is made from the shanks of animals. They can be interchanged, veal, beef, game. This is a chewier cut of meat, I have pressure cooked it to speed up process. I have also used shank for soup bones as someone said they seen in Safeway. These have alot of flavor.


On December 31, 2007 at 12:04 AM, Luca2 (guest) said...
Subject: Ossobucco
I really love your site. I'm cooking my ossobucco now here in Buenos Aires. A few weeks ago I ordered it at a restaurant called Duero at the corner of Santa F and Pueyrredon, a place that is generally reliable if not outstanding. What I did not know is that in Argentina ossobucco is considered a cheap, tough, unpalatable meat. My friends pointed this out to me as I was ordering but the menu said that they braise it for four hours, so I was pretty sure that the chef would know what s/he was doing.

Wrong! First of all, what I got was one enormous hunk of COW leg, not veal. It was four inches tall and filled an entire plate, with a huge bone. Still, with four hours of braising.... No, no such luck. It was horribly tough and reminded me of the bad beef stews I used to make before I knew anything about cooking. It was near closing time so I choked down enough to fill myself up, and will never go back. I'm sure the menu is a lie; four hours of braising should be fine even for a big hunk of meat like this.

But tonight I have osobuco [the Spanish spelling] de ternera (i.e. veal), it looks normal, and best of all the three nice pieces cost about 80 cents Canadian. Let's see if I can conquer this anti-ossobucco prejudice with your recipe!

Luca in Barrio Norte


On January 21, 2008 at 03:57 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Osso Bucco
Years ago I had an Osso Bucco in a classic American-Italian restaurant (red flocked wallpaper!) in Las Vegas.

It was seasoned with vinegar - I presume either wine or balsamic. I'm guessing it used a red wine in the sauce, as well. It was very hardy.

I've been ordering Osso Bucco ever since when I see it on the menu, but, to my disappointment, have never run across one seasoned like this.

Has anybody else run accross this?


Gray


On January 28, 2008 at 06:24 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I'm a Chem. E. and stumbled across your website while looking for a recipe for a big 'family' dinner my friends were all throwing. I had some Ossobucco at a restaurant in Chicago (called Sipori) and loved it... so I wanted to try it. I've probably actually cooked about 5-10 dinners in my whole life, and your website and description were SO easy to follow! It was the hit of the menu. Excellent work!

I got the Veal Shanks from a great butcher shop: Gepperth's Meat Market on Halsted in Lincoln Park. I'm sure most Chicagoans know about it, but if not... give it a look.


On January 28, 2008 at 08:56 PM, Dilbert said...
Gray -

there's a couple places in Vegas that do most excellent osso bucco - one being Ferraro's on West Flamingo - another down toward the Henderson line - Dangelo.

I think somebody that worked one place changed jobs or such - very similar and most excellent.

and no, I haven't been able to duplicate it either!


On March 16, 2008 at 03:26 PM, KarenNYC (guest) said...
Subject: greenmarket shanks / length
Thanks for this great site.

I like to support greenmarket purveyors of meat but cuts don't always come exactly as you want them. For ex., I bought a couple of long-ish lamb shanks that, had they been cut in smaller pieces, would have made for a fine, if not as meaty as veal, ossobucco. But the meat seller was not a butcher and I'm not exactly set up for sawing shanks in my apartment, so I braised the shanks. They were delish but I still wonder about home shank-sawing. That would be a different site -- butcheringforengineers dot com.


On March 16, 2008 at 03:38 PM, KarenNYC (guest) said...
Subject: oops spelling
Ossobuco. One c.


On March 16, 2008 at 05:27 PM, Dilbert said...
per Wikki...

Ossobuco (Italian for 'holed bone'), in English often spelled 'osso buco' or 'osso bucco', is a Milanese specialty of veal shanks cooked in meat broth and ...

doncha love it when it all doesn't taste the same <g>


On April 11, 2008 at 02:58 PM, north40 (guest) said...
Subject: Layering ossobuco in braising pot?
I note that you carefully placed your shanks in one layer and added liquid so that it did not quite cover. My question is, I am cooking it for a crowd, and based on the portion recommendations of my butcher have 16 smallish beef shanks. They will all fit in my 7.5 quart dutch oven, so I intended to layer them in there... (probably will yield 2 to 2-1/2 layers) which I realize means I can only guarantee the marrow will remain intact for the top layer. But will this not work? Will the meat not braise properly? Any advice appreciated, thanks.


On April 11, 2008 at 03:34 PM, Dilbert said...
I'd be tempted to look for a way to do them in a single layer.

with multiple layers the bottom would have be be fully submerged to have any of the second layer in liquid. not sure how it would work out - could be boiled bottom layer and braised top layer?

turkey roasting pan? perhaps two pans?


On July 10, 2008 at 01:23 PM, EY (guest) said...
Subject: Grill meat instead of pan frying
Hi - love your site. I have a tip for the Osso Bucco. Instead of frying in butter, put the meat under a really hot grill for a few minutes on either side to really sear the meat. Improves the colour and taste of the dish. Cheers!


On July 15, 2008 at 03:21 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Great recipe and photos, very similar to the way I make it.

One comment:

Compared to other recipes on the site, this one brought up a plethora of ads for weight loss.

I love Ossobuco, and yeah, I'm a few pounds over the AHA limits, but, hey, I'm offended by the bombardment.


On July 15, 2008 at 05:32 AM, Michael Chu said...
Anonymous wrote:
Compared to other recipes on the site, this one brought up a plethora of ads for weight loss.

Wow, that's weird. The only thing I can think of is that the weight loss ads seem to be performing on this particular recipe. If nobody clicked on the ads, then I'd stop having them (I've already blacklisted several dozen weight loss ads in the past, but it's gotten to the point where I've just given up.)


On August 13, 2008 at 01:40 AM, Francesca (guest) said...
Subject: osso buco
Hi Michael, I just came across your website and I love the way you have every thing spelled out for those of us who have never made osso buco.
I am having a dinner party for 8, I'm making osso for the very first time...Am I out of my mind????? First of all, what-ever posessed me to promise my guests this very expensive cut of meat I will never know....$16.95 per pound. Too late to revise the menu my guest are expecting it....How much veal should I buy? and since I'm cooking for 8 can the veal be put in one pot? Is it a problem if the veal is crowded?
I'm also making risotto alla Milanese. I'm crazy! But I plan on serving lots and lots of wine before dinner, so if I mess this up no one will notice...
Help![/list]


On August 13, 2008 at 08:40 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: osso buco
Francesca wrote:
First of all, what-ever posessed me to promise my guests this very expensive cut of meat I will never know....$16.95 per pound. Too late to revise the menu my guest are expecting it....How much veal should I buy? and since I'm cooking for 8 can the veal be put in one pot? Is it a problem if the veal is crowded?

$17 a pound... that's a lot more than I remember buying my shanks for. As long as the shanks fit on a single layer, it should be okay. If not, you'll probably need to use two pots.


On August 24, 2008 at 08:20 AM, Dee_S said...
Subject: Crockpot or Slowcooker?
Looks like an ideal slowcooker recipe, 6-8 hours is the approximate timing. Anyone tried this with good results?


On August 24, 2008 at 12:36 PM, Dilbert said...
could indeed be adapted to a slow cooker - two things come to mind

first browning the meat - that would not happen in a slow cooker - but you could do it separately

second the braising needs a single layer - you can't just pile the pot full of shanks - two will fit in "the average" slow cooker easily (just a size thing) - larger quantities could be problematic....


On August 28, 2008 at 04:14 PM, Dee_S said...
It worked out great in the slow cooker. Mine is quite wide so was able to do 3 shanks. Thanks for the tip about browning them first, quite delicious *yum*


On August 28, 2008 at 05:59 PM, Dilbert said...
ah! glad it went well - a slow cooker seems quite up to the task of "long and low" which is certainly a big part of "yummy shanks"


On December 06, 2008 at 01:31 AM, Jayneee (guest) said...
Subject: ossobuco
I'm planning on making ossobuco for the first time for a dinner party for eight. I've ordered 8 veal shanks @ $10.99 per lb. I'm thinking about serving them with polenta instead of risotto. I plan on starting the meal with an escarole salad with fava beans. Any suggestions on a vegetable side dish?....maybe sauteed mushrooms? mmmmmmmmmmmm ;)


On December 06, 2008 at 09:25 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: ossobuco
Jayneee wrote:
Any suggestions on a vegetable side dish?

I always like brussels sprouts.


On December 07, 2008 at 05:45 PM, Jayneee (guest) said...
Subject: ossobuco
funny, I was thinking of brussel sprouts but decided I had enough green with the salad and also serving a fennel salad as part of appetizers. I think I'm going to stick with mushrooms (nice and easy). Now I"m trying to come up with a dessert thats not too heavy.


On December 31, 2008 at 12:22 AM, DinnerPartyAddict (guest) said...
Subject: Sides for OssoBuco
I have found that it is a beautiful presentation to serve each shank in a bed of potato puree or well-mashed potatoes, with a side of roasted winter veggies. Keep in mind how hearty the veal will be and only make small portions of the winter vegetables, especially if you want to serve a first course and/or salad. Otherwise, you'll have a lot left over on each guest's plate, which would be a shame!!!


On March 08, 2009 at 10:14 PM, neeki (guest) said...
Subject: double layer of meat
hi michael, i prepared this recipe last night along with your tiramisu for ten people. since i was cooking in their kitchen, i wasn't familiar with their equipment, and only one large pot of theirs was oven-worthy, so i stacked the osso buco in two layers. i think the sauce was a bit less rich than what you'd get from one layer, and it took quite a long time to reduce, but it tasted superb. and the sauce goes really well with some lightly toasted bruschetta. also, i used beef osso buco, and braised it for about fifteen minutes longer at 185 degrees c. thanks for the great recipes.


On March 16, 2009 at 01:19 AM, an anonymous reader said...
I've used the traditional white wine, but I've come to prefer using a lighter red wine, without chicken stock. It gives a rich, mahogany-colored sauce. I'm using maybe 2 cups wine with four shanks. I select a pot that doesn't leave a lot of room around the shanks, so I can use less liquid and get a more concentrated sauce. I cut the the vegetables larger and use more of them, especially carrots. I also braise on the stovetop, but I have to watch the heat so it doesn't scorch. Braising time is reduced to about 1 hour 15 minutes.


On April 04, 2009 at 08:21 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Cooking this tonight for dinner 2 Veal shanks cost me $33.00 Canadian so hope it turns out well. Troy, Calgary Alberta :)


On April 19, 2009 at 03:57 PM, veralenn said...
Subject: fool proof
made ossobuco for the first time ever yesterday with your recipe. it was excellent. my guests said that this should be my signature dish. followed the recipe exactly except that i always double the amount of garlic that any recipe calls for. made your orzo risotto minus the shrimp to serve with the ossobuco and they paired together very well. i come from the stereotypical chinese family. 90% of my family including extended family are either engineers or doctors. i am in the 10% much to my parent's dissapointment. thank you so much for your site! it is the most "fool proof" recipe site i've come across thus far. going to try your standing rib roast next!


On May 17, 2009 at 11:18 PM, ELibby (guest) said...
Subject: home shank sawing
"I still wonder about home shank-sawing. " All you really need is a small hacksaw. There was always one hanging on a nail behind the fridge when I was growing up. My mom used it for ham steaks from the whole ham, and my Dad would put in a new blade whenever needed, (two wingnuts, easy) Best of success!


On May 18, 2009 at 05:33 PM, tommy (guest) said...
Subject: Fake veal?
I saw some shanks at a store - $24 each - but, they looked real red...I thought veal was kind of white. How can one tell real veal?

:unsure:


On May 18, 2009 at 05:44 PM, Dilbert said...
veal is young cow / young beef

retail labeling is subject to .... uhm errr. not much truth in advertising.

regardless, yes - veal tends to the paler side of shades - but color is probably not a real good criteria.


On May 19, 2009 at 12:11 AM, tommy (guest) said...
Subject: Real veal?
Thanks Dilbert....yep, I know retail labeling is problematic at best.....but, um...isn't veal unborn bovine?

I guess we wouldn't have much of a shank to work with if unborn were the case though....

I reckon I'll just try what they have....Tom


On May 19, 2009 at 03:50 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Real veal?
tommy wrote:
Thanks Dilbert....yep, I know retail labeling is problematic at best.....but, um...isn't veal unborn bovine?

Veal can be unborn cattle, but not in the United States. I don't know where you are, but the rules here are that cattle must be able to walk immediately prior to slaughter to enter the food system. "Bob veal" which are baby calves one month of age or less (which include unborn cattle) is the category that you're thinking of, but most veal is not bob veal. If the calf is on the older side and has had a chance to graze/eat grain or eat food besides milk, then both can contribute to the color of the flesh while still being technically considered veal due to its age... or it could be mislabeled.


On October 02, 2009 at 02:34 PM, guest (guest) said...
Subject: Oven Temperature
Good stuff! One thing you don't mention is what temperature to set the oven...325?...bake or roast? Thanks!


On October 02, 2009 at 04:10 PM, Dilbert said...
/quote
Begin to preheat the oven to 350F (175C).


On October 15, 2009 at 09:11 PM, malayne (guest) said...
Subject: cooking
I am making veal ossobucco tonight, browned & slow cooked, garlic, onion, carrots, tomato & o goody for us. thanks for all the great ideas.


On November 15, 2009 at 09:39 AM, Guestulator (guest) said...
Subject: Butter
I am constantly amazed to see the colour of butter you use. It took me a while of seeing to actually realise it was butter!

Love this recipe, have used it a few times now :)


On November 15, 2009 at 05:50 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Butter
Guestulator wrote:
I am constantly amazed to see the colour of butter you use. It took me a while of seeing to actually realise it was butter!

Is it too pale? Butter in the U.S. is often very pale due to the feed that is provided to dairy cows. Grass-fed cows produce a richer, more golden color to their butter (and the butter has healthful properties missing from the non-grass fed varieties).


On December 13, 2009 at 05:16 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Recipe was great... but ya gotta do something with your "Printer Friendly Version"... 24 pages is NOT printer friendly


On December 13, 2009 at 08:34 PM, Michael Chu said...
Anonymous wrote:
Recipe was great... but ya gotta do something with your "Printer Friendly Version"... 24 pages is NOT printer friendly

You can turn off comments in Printer Friendly Version, by clicking on the link that says "hide comments" at the bottom of the article.


On December 24, 2009 at 11:22 PM, Maureen (guest) said...
Subject: Ossobuco
I usually use lamb shanks when I cook this dish. I have used veal as
well but find that lamb shanks have more meat on them. My whole family loves it that way. If you are not a fan of lamb then I would stick to veal or pork otherwise give it a try!!


On January 02, 2010 at 05:56 AM, nate (guest) said...
Subject: great recipe
For those with questions about stacking, it has been found through much testing with braising pot roast, etc, that boiling/simmering, and braising generally yield the same result. IE, stacking would not make much difference. The real key with braising is cooking past the point you think is too long. Do not stop until the collagen melts, and the meat goes very tender.


On January 03, 2010 at 09:50 PM, Maddy (guest) said...
Subject: Ossobuco Old Hand
I found this recipe (and wonderful site) just now looking for a photo to illustrate the invitation to my 20th Annual Ossobuco dinner party. I've seen the price go from $5/pound to almost $20/pound in New York in that time.

I generally brown, braise and reduce the day before the dinner, using both a slow cooker and a pressure cooker. It reheats beautifully for the dinner party (hey, it's stew! Always better the next day), and that frees up the pressure cooker for making real Risotto Milanese in quantity. A pressure cooker is the only way to make good risotto other than the "stand there and stir non-stop for 20 minutes" classic method.

I agree from experience that using white wine (not red) and chicken stock (not beef) lets the more delicate flavor of the veal come through.

Re: which cut of shanks. I start collecting and freezing shanks way ahead of time, so I can get the SMALLER shanks with a well-defined and hollow bone full of marrow (treat!). So I average serving 2 very small or 1 medium shank per person. (And leftovers for me, of course!)

This is a dandy site. Love the step-by-step instructions. I'm bookmarking it!


On January 04, 2010 at 05:21 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Can you use any type of shank in this recipe, like beef or pork?


On January 04, 2010 at 05:32 PM, Dilbert said...
classically it's veal shanks - but certainly you can use the same technique on any shank - beef and lamb are two others often used.


On February 18, 2010 at 10:25 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Thanks for the great osso buco recipe.

Here in Hungary we have quite a few good recipe for shanks, but by this even my great cook father was amased.

We had the same dish once in Toscana with my husband , in a tipical family run restaurant, but frankly to say it was even better.

I do not know how most of you consume the meal, but please say that you also eat the bond marrow, as it is far the best part of it.


On March 12, 2010 at 09:03 AM, shadowstabbing (guest) said...
Only 2 problems...

1. We don't "brown" braised meats, we sear. That was a horribly weak sear. I understand you were using butter and may not have wanted to induce smoking, but next time just use oil and crank the temp to high. That sear is very, very important.

2. Don't use "broth." Most of the time broth you get in a store is salty garbage. If you can find it, go for stock. Other than that, very nice piece.


On March 29, 2010 at 02:57 AM, Salty McButter (guest) said...
Subject: if you sear with oil, do you still get good fond?
i did this recipe twice in the last week, and it came out fantastic. this second time, i did not get the sear i wanted....

if you use oil, will the fond still have as good flavor? how about butter and oil?


On March 29, 2010 at 12:17 PM, Dilbert said...
I just use olive oil for a heavy sear - it does just fine in the fond category.

you can use a mix of cooking oil & butter - I often do that for a saute on a "delicate" dish where I'm looking for a flavor kicker.

with osso buco there are other strong flavors to the dish that I think will completely hide the butter taste.


On July 03, 2010 at 04:23 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Anchovy surprise
Thought I was an expert with osso buco until I saw an italian-born home cook add an anchovy early on to the browning sauce. It works. Anchovy is a flavour bullet! You don't actually taste or want to taste anything fishy. It adds depth of flavour, or is simply a flavour enhancer...not sure which.

Anchovy may be the natural mono-sodium glutamate of slow cooked meats - but without the bad connotations. It's been used in rich dark sauces like Worcestershire forever, so clearly something is going on.

Wouldn't bother going out to buy anchovies, but if you've got some handy then be bold and give it a go.


On December 06, 2010 at 06:25 PM, CJ (guest) said...
Subject: Northern Italian Osso Bucco
My family is from northern Italy and I grew up eating Osso Bucco. We use beef shank, which is far cheaper than veal. The flavor can also stand up better to a red wine instead of white. Brown beef heavily in olive oil. We use more carrot and onion in the mirepoix, no tomatoes, add an anchovey to the broth, and use only stock. Serve over parmesean polenta. We add the gremolata as a garnish over the whole dish.

I've braised in the oven, on top of the stove, and used a crock pot. The only difference is the crockpot doesn't reduce the broth as well. I've done single layers and stacked layers for more portions with no change in results. Just keep your kettle covered.

It is rich and satisfying in small portions, and costs maybe $10 US for a family of four.


On February 02, 2011 at 08:15 PM, JT (guest) said...
Subject: Osso Bucco
Have made this recipe several times. The family loves it. Am making it today. Used bacon grease for the browning and ran the shanks through flour first for a little twist this time.


On March 18, 2011 at 01:50 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Ossobuco
I'm preparing ossobuco as I write this (and I'm also an engineer!) This is a splendid dish. I note all the prominent websites with ratings show five stars for their recipes--not surprising. My preparation is similar to yours, but I'm using a light red wine (Pinot Noir) tonight. I once tried a big Cabernet, but thought it was too much. I also go heavy on the veggies. An hour into cooking, the meat is still on the tough side, but the sauce is already silky and rich. I'll make saffron risotto to accompany. Thanks, Michael!


On March 27, 2011 at 06:15 AM, cuisinista (guest) said...
Subject: ossobuco
I have been making ossobuco successfully for many years. here are some comments: I found a good source of pale veal for ~$5/lb. I get incensed by the outrageous prices for inferior shanks that some fancy stores get away with. This is a poor person's meat/dish even though it is wonderful. Humble cuts often are elevated by elegant preparations. I do not agree that any shank will do. Pale veal becomes very delicate succulent melt-in-your-mouth meat that you can't achieve with other meats. Not that they aren't good - just not the same. I add a fennel to my vegetable mix. I use white wine, chicken broth and some meat glaze I save from broiling beef. If it is needed I use a small squeeze of anchovy paste I keep in the fridge for when I need a bit of umami. I use silver thyme, a bit of oregano and sometimes a bit of basil and or tarragon if they are around fresh and a bay leave. I use plum tomatoes some fresh, some canned. I find if you cook it, let it cool, then reheat, the flavor improves.


On May 12, 2012 at 02:57 PM, dinnerteaser (guest) said...
Subject: osso buco video
hi! this is great. i made ossso buco in a similar way, however i served it with a really rich risotto. it turned out fantastic and a big success with my friends!!! we made a video of the whole process, have a look at it

http://dinnerteaser.tumblr.com/post/21853136628/osso-buco

bon apetito!!


On April 01, 2013 at 03:09 PM, NYC cook & eat (guest) said...
Subject: What's the best cut?
I bought veal shanks for this and was told that the center cut shank is a better cut than the shoulder cut. Since this was my first attempt, I went with the butcher's advice and it was good. My friend thought it was a way to charge me more for smaller size pieces. What's your opinion on this? I'd like to be sure I'm getting the best price on the best cut. Thanks!

By the way, my friend thought it tasted great.


On April 01, 2013 at 07:26 PM, Dilbert said...
classically this is cut from the leg section between the 'ankle' and the 'knee' - either front or hind leg, and people have their favorites, I personally prefer the front leg shank.

not heard of any of them described as 'shoulder' - might be a local term?

there is not a huge amount of meat on them - but done right it's very tasty.


On October 22, 2013 at 04:32 PM, merrymeadow (guest) said...
Subject: ossobuco
I just found this recipe and I'll be trying it out tonight. In the meantime, though, I love how you set out the recipe; visually it is really easy to follow during the cooking process.

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