Ossobuco roughly translates to 'bone with a hole' aka marrow bone. It is best made with veal shanks however beef or venison could also be used. Veal is becoming a lot more popular and is being sold in a wide range of butchers. Even if your local butcher doesn't have it in stock, most will order it in for you. I got mine from Jack McCarthy's in Kanturk.
My own version is made with red wine to give added depth of flavor which I think really suits the veal.
- 5-6 pieces of veal shank cut into 3-4cm thick pieces. Your butcher will do this for you if you ask nicely. Ask him to keep the outer skin on so the veal will keep it's shape.
- 3 large onions cut in half
- 3 carrots pealed and roughly chopped
- 2 large leeks cleaned, quartered and then halved length ways
- 15 cloves of garlic (adjust to personal taste if desired)
- 1.5 bottles of good red wine
- 250ml of veal or beef stock
- Flavoured olive oil (I use Nudo's Olive Oil with Garlic and Basil)
- 50g of butter (I use Glenillen butter)
- Rapeseed Oil (I use Donegal Rapeseed Oil)
|Nudo's Olive Oil with Garlic and Basil|
|Donegal Rapeseed Oil|
- Start by adding all the vegetables to a roasting dish and sprinkle with a generous amount of the flavoured olive oil. Add to a preheated oven (gas mark 6, 220 degrees Celsius, 400 degrees Fahrenheit). Leave for about 40 minutes until the vegetables begin to caramelize and begin to colour.
- While the vegetables are in the oven you can begin to brown the veal. In a large saucepan on high heat add the butter and a dash of rapeseed oil. Once the butter melts and begins to sizzle add the veal shanks. Only add one at a time so the heat stays in the pan. Allow to brown on both sides and continue process until all pieces are browned. Once this is done you can place veal to the side on a plate.
- In the pot you will be left with a gorgeous brown crust on the base, do not get rid of this this is where all the flavour for your sauce is. Begin to deglaze the pan by adding roughly 1/4 of the bottle of wine. Keep on a high heat and with a wooden spoon scrape of the crust from the base and mix with the wine. Allow the wine to reduce to a syrup like consistency and then repeat again. This may seem like a lot of hard work but doing it this way allows for further depth and levels of flavour to be built up.
- Next add the stock to the pot, then the veal and top with the vegetables. You will likely be left with a good bit of the vegetables left uncovered, if this is the case use the second bottle of wine to top up the mixture and ensure all is covered.
- Now place on a low heat and cover. Allow to cook for 3 hours. It will look like this once done. Notice how the colour has changed to a rich deep brown. It will look on the outside as if burnt however that is just braising of the meat with the wine. It will be falling off the bone and incredibly moist.
- Next remove the veal and place to the side on a plate. Then strain the vegetables from the sauce. Discard the vegetables and re-add the strained sauce back into the pot. On a high heat allow the sauce to reduce to about half.
- Once this is done you are ready to plate. I have served mine on a bed of risotto, the piece of veal shank on top and a generous drizzle of sauce on the plate.
- Finally tuck in and enjoy and do not forget the gorgeous delicious marrow left in the bone.