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Osso Buco is a Milanese recipe. It was necessary to find a way to cook the leg and tougher parts of beef in a way that would make the meat tender and delicious. Often it was the oxen from the farm that had died from old age. It was not a meal for the rich but something the farmers and peasants would enjoy. Today we have the luxury of going to the butcher and asking for the osso buco meat. Usually it is veal or beef shin or shank, cut crossways. It is a fantastic meal for a cold winter’s evening with a great glass of red. Osso Buco means bone with a hole.

I tried to buy a marrow spoon but they are rather expensive so I might have to keep searching junk shops. I think England would be a great place to search. Must ask my mother if she has one hidden away, you never know. This spoon is especially designed to extract the marrow from the bone.

There are lots of recipes out there for Osso Buco and this is just my version of the various recipes I’ve read and tried. I like a strong taste of lemon throughout the sauce and I really insist on carrots being in the sauce.

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Recipe

6 -8 thick slices of veal or beef Osso Buco

Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
100 ml extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium–large onions, finely diced

A little flour for coating the meat

1 shallot diced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 good-quality anchovy fillets
2 large thyme sprigs
2 large sage sprigs
Large sprig of rosemary
1 bay leaf
250 ml dry white wine
1 can of crushed tomatoes
250 ml veal stock
Lemon juice from one lemon

Gremolata
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
lemon zest from two lemons

Directions

Season the Osso Buco pieces with salt and pepper and flour. Heat half the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add to the pan and brown the pieces on each side. Remove to a plate and set aside.

Heat the remaining olive oil in the pan and add the onion, shallot garlic, anchovies and herbs and gently sauté for 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Turn up the heat and deglaze the pan with the wine. Cook until the wine is almost completely reduced, then add the crushed tomatoes and veal stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and return the Osso Buco to the pan. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly, I often add a little sugar. I transfer the whole dish into an oven proof dish and put alfoil over the top. Then place in the oven at 170 degree C and leave to cook for  2 ½–4 hours, occasionally taking the dish out and spooning the sauce over the meat. Eventually the meat will begin to separate from the bone.

To make the Gremolata, chop and grate the ingredients and then scatter over the Osso Buco. Lift the pieces of Osso Buco onto plates and spoon the sauce around the meat.

Oh and by the way,  this would make  a great meal with the lemon almond and olive oil cake as a dessert.

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