Osso Buco RecipeOsso buco is a classic Italian recipe made by slow cooking veal shanks until the meat is tender and succulent.
Veal shanks are tough cuts of meat with a lot of connective tissue in them. Braising them slowly in liquid breaks down those chewy bits.
Braising doesn't produce the flavorful, brown outer crust that dry-heat cooking methods like roasting do, so we sear the meat on the stovetop first. You can read more here about how to braise meat.
Osso buco can be served with risotto, polenta or even mashed potatoes. Traditionally, osso buco is garnished with a zesty condiment called Gremolata.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
- 3 crosscut veal shanks, about 1 pound each
- ¼ cup canola oil (or other vegetable oil)
- ½ large onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium rib celery, chopped
- 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and slightly crushed
- ¾ cup canned diced tomatoes (including liquid)
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 4 cups brown stock (i.e. beef stock) or veal stock
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Pre-heat oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Pat any excess moisture off the veal shanks with clean paper towels. This will enhance the browning of the meat.
- Make a few vertical (i.e., parallel to the bone) cuts in the outer membrane of the shanks so that the meat won't twist out of shape while it braises.
- Season the shanks well with Kosher salt.
- In a heavy, cast-iron dutch oven or brazier, heat the oil over high heat, then add the meat and sear it thoroughly, using a pair of tongs to turn it. When a nice brown crust has developed on all sides of the meat, remove it from the pan and set it aside.
- Add the carrots, celery, onions and garlic to pot and cook for 5 minutes or so, or until the onion is slightly translucent.
- Add the wine and reduce by about half.
- Now return the meat to the pot and add the tomatoes, stock, bay leaf, thyme and peppercorns. The liquid should cover the veal shanks about ¾ of the way up. Heat on the stovetop until the liquid comes to a boil, then cover with a tight-fitting lid and transfer the whole thing to the oven.
- Cook for 1½ to 2 hours or until the meat is tender.
- Remove pot from the oven. Strain the cooking liquid by pouring it through a strainer lined with cheesecloth. Season the liquid to taste with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Serve the osso buco atop a bed of risotto, polenta or mashed potatoes, with the cooking liquid poured over them, and garnish with gremolata if desired.