Apart from Indian food, Italian has to be my favourite. I love the fresh, simple ingredients and flavours that you get from many Italian dishes and the smells that take me back to Tuscany are amazing. I can only dream of living in Italy at the moment but in the meantime I am happy to look forward to holidaying there and cooking great Italian dishes at home. Tomatoes, basil and pasta are always available in my kitchen for when I just need to throw something together quickly but it is always nice for me to try something to further explore my Italian food crush .Wild boar stew, Tuscan bread soup and veal Milanese are all favourites of mine along with this lovely recipe for Osso Buco.
Osso Buco is a rich, braised veal dish made with veal shin. In Italian, Osso is the bone and Buco is the hole, which refers to the bone marrow that is essential to the dish. You don't have to eat the marrow as the the dish will pick up the rich flavour throughout the cooking process but for that extra bit of naughtiness it tastes delicious. Traditionally the dish is simply braised with vegetables and served with gremolata but a more modern version incorporates a tomato sauce, which is the dish I have made. This is a great dish for preparing quickly then leaving it to cook slowly whilst you crack open a bottle of red ( it tastes great with a nice Chianti or Montepulciano D'Abbruzzo ).
( for 2 people)
2 veal shin steaks, with bone marrow
2 celery sticks
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic
250ml white wine
500ml chicken stock
1 tin of good quality chopped tomatoes
small handful of fresh oregano
2 bay leaves, preferably fresh but dried is ok
1 tbs flour
1 tbs olive oil
1. Lightly dust the veal shins with flour and sear in a casserole pan with the olive oil, until browned
2. Chop the onion, celery and carrot, add to the pan and stir until softened
3. Crush or chop the garlic and add to pan
4. Add in the wine and simmer for 15 minutes then add in the stock, tomatoes, oregano and bay leaves
5. Place lid on dish and simmer for 1 1/2-2 hours, until veal is tender and marrow is soft enough to be able to scoop out.
Serve with polenta or potatoes.