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Venison Osso Buco


Funny story: when the boys went on their cruise with my parents in October, D would call us and tell us what he had for dinner. "Today I had pheasant." "For dinner I had caviar." Everyday it was something fantastic sounding that made my mouth water.

One night, he announced, incredulously, "Mom, I ordered osso buco and it didn't come with the bone. Can you believe it?!?"

Nonna shared that D actually asked their waiter about the missing bone, explaining that osso buco literally means 'hole in the bone.' The waiter shrugged his shoulders and leaned down to whisper to D - You're right...it should have the bone.

Needless to say, the Enthusiastic Kitchen Elf has been requesting real osso buco for a month now. I finally got around to making some. I had some venison shanks in the freezer and this weekend was it.

Ingredients serves 4
  • four osso buco-cut venison shanks*
  • flour for dredging
  • 3 T butter
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 parsnips, chopped
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed and chopped
  • 6 C organic chicken stock (it should come about 2/3 of the way up the sides of the shanks)
  • 1/2 C red wine
  • 1/2 fresh tomato sauce
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
*I found the venison osso buco at D'Artagnan Foods.

Cilantro-Pistachio Pesto
  • 2 C fresh cilantro
  • 1 T caramelized shallots
  • 1/2 C raw pistachios
  • 1/2 C shredded parmesan
  • juice from 1 organic lemon (I used Meyer lemon because we have a tree in our backyard)

Procedure
Heat 1 T butter and 1 T oil in a dutch oven or other heavy bottom oven-safe pot over medium heat until melted. Dredge the shanks in flour and brown the shanks in the butter-oil mixture.


Cook for 5 to 6 minutes per side, letting a golden crust to form on each side.



Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Add 2 T more butter and another 1 T of oil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the carrot, shallots, parsnips, and fennel; sauté until slightly browned. Season with salt and pepper.

Return the shanks to the pot. Pour in the stock, wine, and tomato sauce. Bring the liquid almost to a simmer. Cover the pot with a lid and place the pot on the middle rack in the oven. Cook for 3-1/2 or 4 hours - until it’s almost falling off the bone. Osso buco should be tender and juicy, but still hold its shape. While the meat braises, make the pesto.

Place all of the ingredients into the blender. Pulse a few times, drizzle in olive oil, and resume pulsing.  Pulse. Oil. Pulse. Oil.

If you want a smoother, sauce-like pesto, add more olive oil and blend longer; if you want a chunkier pesto, use less oil and blend for less time.  So simple. So fresh. So fragrant.

To serve, I put some pasta e fagioli in the bottom of the bowl, placed shank on top, and drizzled lightly with the sauce. Add a dollop of pesto on the side.

Here's that hole-in-the-bone. The marrow slid easily from the bone and was so, so tasty. 

Comments

  1. We eat venison all the time but have never gotten an osso bucco cut. I always use beef. This looks delicious Cam.

    ReplyDelete

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