Thursday, May 17, 2007

Osso Buco with red sauce

I know that most just want to read the recipe, know where it came from or why there are several versions of the same dish but I think food is part of life. As if our existence had several crossed together with weights on the ends. There we are, in the middle, trying to stay upright while the platform tilts one way or another. Food, wine, friends, work, travel, culture, education and relax are all things that make the platform swing. Recipes are tied to events, dinners with friends, or just time when we can quietly enjoy rich flavors and each other’s company. We are from Milan. In our section of the woods Osso buco is made with a white sauce and served with a bit of Risotto alla Milanese. When we told our cooking buddies that we intended to make Osso Buco, they immediately told us of how much they loved Osso Buco and the marvelous, velvety red sauce.

This is a sacrilege, although the traditional Milanese Restaurant Gran S. Bernardo prepares Osso Buco with red sauce. We cook, more than for the pleasure of preparing the perfect recipe, more for the enjoyment of our friends. Thus, out comes the Cucchiaio di Argento, the bible of traditional Italian recipes, and we look for a version of Osso Buco with red sauce. Several recipes were scanned and after a bit of discussion and hodge podge mix and match we came up with something we felt we be appropriate. No it is not significantly different from our traditions. Lemon is not part of this recipe and a bit of tomato sauce is added.


4 Osso Buco
Flour to cover the Osso Buco
50 g ( ½ stick )Butter
1 Onion
1 Carrot
1 stalk Celery
2 cups Full Bodied Red Wine
2 cups Chicken or Beef Broth
8 oz. Tomato Sauce
50 g dried Mushrooms (250 grams fresh mushrooms)


Flour the Osso Buco and set aside on a pan.

Dice the Onion, Celery and Carrot. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the onion, celery and carrots until the onions are transparent but have not begun to change color.

Turn the heat to medium high. Add the Osso Buco. Cook for about 3 minutes on each side to give the meat a lightly brown color. Add the red wine. Reduce the heat to medium and add the tomato sauce, the mushrooms and ½ the broth. Salt and pepper

Once the liquid comes to a slight boil, reduce the heat to low. The Osso Buco should just simmer. Turn the meat every 15 minutes and cook for about 2 hours. Add broth as necessary. Taste occasionally for salt and pepper.

Remove the Osso Buco from the skillet. Pour the sauce into a mixer or use a soup mixer (boat motor) to reduce the mushrooms and any other vegetables still intact. Return the sauce to the skillet along with the meat and simmer for another 5 minutes.


Serve on a bed of Risotto alla Parmigiana or alla Milanese and sprinkle with chopped Italian Parsley (not necessary but look good).

Serve with a complex, full bodied red wine. Some great choices are Barbaresco, Barolo, Nebiolo, Amarone, or Refosco.


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