Have your butcher tie the pieces of veal shank around the middle with cotton kitchen string like a belt; this will help the meat keep its shape as it cooks. You can also tie the veal yourself. Serve the osso buco with small spoons so guests can scoop out the luscious marrow.
More Veal Recipes
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Six 2-inch-thick meaty veal shanks, each tied with string (3/4 to 1 pound each)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 large carrots, cut into 1/2 -inch dice
1 medium onion, cut into 1/2 -inch dice
1 celery rib, cut into 1/2 -inch dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup dry red wine, such as Barbera or Chianti
1 cup drained canned Italian tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 cup chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 325°. Heat the olive oil in a large enameled cast-iron casserole. Season the veal shanks with salt and pepper and cook over moderate heat until browned, about 8 minutes per side. Transfer the shanks to a plate.
Add the carrots, onion, celery and garlic to the casserole. Reduce the heat to moderately low and cook, stirring, until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the wine and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and chicken stock and bring to a simmer over high heat.
Return the shanks to the casserole, nestling them into the vegetables; add any accumulated juices. Cover the casserole and braise the shanks in the oven for 1 hour. Turn the shanks, cover and cook for about 1 hour longer, until the meat is very tender. Transfer the shanks to a rimmed platter and cover loosely with foil. Measure the sauce; you should have 2 cups. If necessary, reduce the sauce over high heat. Season with salt and pepper.
Cut the strings off the shanks. Spoon the sauce on top and serve.
The osso buco can be refrigerated overnight and reheated, covered, in a 325° oven.
Serve a red that echoes the wine in the osso buco and stands up to the mushrooms and pancetta. A good choice would be a Barbera d'Asti.
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