RECIPE: Osso Bucco

canarybird01December 29, 2008

I've made this one several times now and find the flavour just wonderful! It's worth buying the brandy and dry sherry just for this dish.

Don't skip those ingredients! We don't get veal shanks here so I use young beef.

New Italian Recipes Presents



3 lbs. Veal shanks Note: If you can't find veal, or the cost is prohibitive, you might try lamb shanks. Some recipes say you can substitute beef shanks. Keep in mind, if you use lamb or beef, the meat won't be as "fall off the bone" tender. The wonderful, meaty-vegetable stew taste will be there, however, so it's still worth it. Additional Note: If you use veal, you may want to tie cooking twine around the shanks to keep them from falling completely apart during cooking.

3-4 T extra virgin olive oil

2 T butter or Butter Buds

1 red onion, coarsely chopped

1/2 green bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1/2 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped

3 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 large stalk celery, coarsely chopped

5-6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1/3 cup Marsala wine (or dry sherry)

1/3 cup brandy

1 T balsamic vinegar

2 T tomato paste

1 sprig rosemary

4 sprigs thyme

2 bay leaves

2 cups chicken broth (homemade chicken stock recipe)

Veal or beef stock can be substituted.

Salt and pepper to taste


2 T chopped Italian Parsley

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 t grated lemon peel

1 T lemon juice

Mix in a bowl and reserve to sprinkle over individual servings.


In a large skillet or Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid, add 2 T olive oil over medium high heat. Season shanks with salt and pepper on both sides, then brown them on all sides. When browning is down, remove the shanks to a bowl to be added back in later.

In the same pan, reduce heat to low and add 2 T olive oil and butter or Butter Buds.

Add the onions, peppers, carrots, celery and garlic. Stir well to coat, then cover. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. (This will allow the vegetables to release their juices.

Add the Marsala or sherry and the brandy, also the balsamic vinegar. Stir in well, cover again, and let simmer on low for about 6-8 minutes.

Make a "bouquet garni" out of the rosemary, thyme and bay leaves. (Wrap them in cheese cloth and tie with cooking twine.) Add this to the simmering vegetables, along with the tomato paste. Increase heat to medium-high and add the shanks and chicken, veal or beef stock. Stir both in well to mix with vegetables.

When broth is boiling, reduce heat to low again and cover. Cook for about 1-1 1/2 hours. Veal should be "falling off the bone" tender after an hour or less. Lamb or beef might take a full hour and a half to reach maximum tenderness. Falling off the bone is probably not going to happen with lamb or beef, but the meat should be very tasty and quite tender.

Garnish with gremolata, and serve the osso buco with the above-mentioned risotto, or with creamy mashed potatoes.

In keeping with true gourmet cooking, here are a couple of variations for you:

1. Add either a 14 oz. or 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes at the point you add the Marsala and the brandy.

2. At the end of cooking, mix 1 cup of sour cream with 1 T of flour. Stir into the osso buco and remove from the heat. (This would give you a German version. Call it German Veal Shank Stew!)

Recipe Source: New Italian Recipes


Sharon's Note: I halved the recipe but used 1/3 cup each of onion, celery and carrot chopped very finely into a mirepoix.

rather than chopping these three ingredients coarsely as called for in the recipe.

I simmer as directed for 1 1/2 hours and the meat is falling-off-the-bone tender.


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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

That looks wonderful and I will make it eventually. I have never made osso bucco because of the marrow element (which falls into the gross category for me) but everything else looks delicious.
I have read that some restaurants serve small spoons for eating the marrow as it is considered a delicacy.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2008 at 4:00PM
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It's not compulsory to eat the marrow, Bumblebeez :-)
My husband can't stand the thought so I steal his when I'm dishing up :-)

    Bookmark   December 29, 2008 at 7:15PM
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Sharon - see what you've done? You've flung a craving on me for Osso bucco! Now I'll have to search for some veal shanks.

Seriously - thanks for posting your recipe. I'm intrigued by the thought of the marsala/sherry and brandy. Sounds absolutely wonderful and I'll be trying it soon.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 6:53PM
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Pat....I'm sure you're going to love this one! lol.


    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 7:07PM
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Oh darn.....I forgot to add this picture to the recipe.
Here's the beef before cooking, in case anyone doesn't know what they look like in the "before" state :-).


    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 7:14PM
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I was telling DH about my reply to this and he said, "Oh, I thought you were buying some kind of marrow-free osso bucco. Well, thanks for taking out the marrow." :-)

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 2:35AM
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Funny Colleen! My hubby loves the marrow and I'm neutral - take it or leave it, so I give him mine lol!


    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 3:39AM
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Oh SharonCb, I am lusting after your Osso Bucco! Something I have never tried but promise myself fairly frequently that I will. Maybe the mouthwatering picture is the incentive I need. Thanks for sharing.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 1:43PM
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Thank you so much for posting this recipe! I am a rancher that raises all natural beef here in the flint hills of Kansas.
I have been asked to start cutting osso bucco. Since I was unfamiliar with that cut, I tried to cook it much like I would a roast, or a steak. Neither was to my satisfaction. Today I found this recipe on your website. I will be testing it out this weekend for all here on the ranch to sample. Thanks!

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 4:19PM
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You're welcome Tiya. The taste is just wonderful!
Don't skip out the dry sherry and brandy as they are a really important part of the flavour bouquet.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 8:08PM
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How did I miss this recipe? I really like Osso Bucco, but don't use veal. I saw this cut (in beef) at the grocery store tonight, too. This will be Sunday night dinner, when the kids come over. Thanks.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 10:09PM
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Sharon your picture is mouth watering. I've never eaten Osso Bucco and have wanted to try making it for several years. Each time I've looked at the veal shanks they have been $30 a pound and I would back away. It's good to know I can use something else, but I didn't quiet understand exactly what you used. Was it beef shanks or some lamb part. I really want to try your recipe.


    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 8:42PM
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Hi Beverly....

Those are beef shanks. They are from young beef, here called 'novillo'....under 3 years old but not young enough to be classed as veal.


    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 5:00AM
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Thanks Sharon, betcha I can't get those here. I've never seen anything to look like them. The only shanks I have seen here are mostly fat. Off to look for some soon....


    Bookmark   January 30, 2009 at 3:27PM
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CA Kate

I made this recipe today for a Valentines Day supper using veal. This is a very good recipe and we enjoyed it very much. I'd never eaten Gremolata before, but it was a perfect condiment for this dish. Thanks for sharing it, Sharon.

And, yes, we ate the marrow.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2009 at 10:50PM
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I made it last weekend when the kids came over. I got some wonderful beef shanks at the Amish Market. It's not too much work, especially if you use the FP for the mirepoix. The Gremolata really adds a fine touch. It was a hit, though I was the only one to eat the marrow. I had to give the kids a history lesson on marrow as an important food item.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 11:45AM
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Thanks for coming back with your comments westelle and momj47.

I've even used this recipe on some rather inexpensive stewing beef (not tender) and it was great.

Of course when you use brandy and sherry along with mirepoix and cook it long enough it could only be good and tasty.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 6:01PM
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Sharon, as usual, this looks amazing. You inspired me to try it for a company meal on the weekend. I was able to order the veal shanks at what I think is an amazingly good price. Just a question though, in your picture, had you added the canned tomatoes or not? I will be serving 5 people, would you double the sauce?


    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 2:15PM
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CA Kate

Old Mac crashed just before Christmas. While a company out of Livermore, CA was able to capture all on the hard drive it still needs to be translated so my new Mac can read it. Ergo: no old recipes. So, I am delighted to see this recipe re-posted since it is a really good one. HD turns 70 next week and all of the family will be here and this would be a great B'day dinner.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2014 at 6:41PM
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CA Kate

I made this recipe with veal for HD's B'day and loved by everyone. I had a good bit of the gravy/sauce/liquid left. DD saw oxtails at the meat market the next day and suggested cooking those in the leftover liquid... which I had saved. I did as she suggested and cooked them for about 5 hours stovetop in my big Dutchoven. They were soooooooo delicious! They were better than the veal, so I can see now what you meant by using other meats.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2014 at 3:57PM
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I love osso bucco ! im dying to cook one again ill get tips from here ! Thanks folks!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 12:12AM
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Wow this sounds fabulous! I don't use wine in my cooking, any suggestions as to what I can use as a substitute?
Thanks all!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 2:44PM
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