The temperature has dropped in Australia, it's wet, and you have a hankering for some slow-cooked food and a bottle of red. Well, so did I, and that's how this delicious beef ossobuco dish was created! Its melt-in-your-mouth perfection, heart-warming and the addition of some anchovy dressing makes this dish fancy enough to serve to any foodie! Keep reading to see what epic wine paring I went with for the perfect weekend meal.
What Is Ossobuco?
Ossobuco can come from pork, beef or veal. It is the cross-cut of the shank. It is typically cut into thick steaks and cooked slowly, aka braised. There is a bone running down the middle of the shank, which contains marrow adding to the richness and upping the flavour levels considerably too.
Probably the most classic dish is the ossobuco alla Milanese - which translates to bone with a hole. Probably a hard sell in a restaurant for such a classic dish. Served with saffron risotto and a little gremolata, its comfort food at its finest!
Cooking beef ossobuco, as with any cut that requires slow cooking, is actually quite an easy thing to do (says the man writing the recipe!). Simply start by having a clean work surface and reading the recipe properly, and you will set yourself up for success!
- lightly flour the beef ossobuco and sear until brown in a pan. Don't crowd the pan, do so in stages - this keeps the pan hot and helps give you a nice sear on your ossobuco
- Remove the ossobuco, lower the heat and soften the vegetables for a couple mins.
- Add tomatoes, red wine, stock, orange juice/zest and herbs. Bring to a simmer.
- Add back in the seared ossobuco, cover and place in the oven
- Cook @ 140c for approx 2 hours or until the meat starts to fall off the bone
What To Serve With Ossobuco
As mentioned above, the classic accompaniment with ossobuco is saffron risotto but when you think of braised beef ossobuco, think of anything you would eat with slow-cooked meals with a rich tomato/wine-based sauce.
Mashed potatoes, polenta, risotto or other mashed vegetables are all things that I love to serve with beef ossobuco. My preference - being Irish is always going to be potato with too much butter (said nobody ever!).
Aside from this, I often have the vegetables in the pot from cooking it; carrots or even green beans are a good accompaniment too.
The one thing I will say when having slow-cooked dishes is that they can be rich so having something to cut through the fat helps HUGELY. On my braised beef cheek ragu dish, I add lemon & parsley oil. With this delicious beef ossobuco dish, I have gone for anchovy parsley oil. Salty, acidic and freshness from the parsley helps round out the dish HUGELY. So, in my opinion, don't skip this step. See the recipe card for the full details!
The Cutting Winery
A hidden gem! Somedays, you come across a small family-owned winery that not only makes great wine but is home to great people too. I first got chatting to Belinda after a friend of a friend introduced us. Belinda is full of life; her energy is immense and only matched by the quality of the wine being produced.
The Cutting winery makes estate-grown wines which in fact, were planted by Daniels (her partner) family in the '90s. All handpicked travelling a whopping 52 metres from vineyard to winery it, 's boutique to a T.
The wine is basket pressed and matured in a combination of new and old French barrels for 14-16 months. After this, it's bottled, and lucky people like me get to enjoy it 😉
If you haven't guessed or simply scrolled past all the rest of my waffle then this week/recipe, I am digging a Barossa Shiraz from The Cutting Winery! Small, boutique, family-owned and making bloody good wine!
The 2020 Shiraz is an absolute cracker! Belinda & co have created something that is as crushable as it is worthy of aging, time in the decanter, and to be enjoyed over fine food. Something you don't see every day.
The nose has delicious black notes in the form of blackberries, liquorice, mulberries and a whiff of spice and oak too. It's hard to stop sniffing it - it's that good! After I've gotten over sticking my nose so far into my glass, it's almost drinking the wine! My palate is equally as impressed. Classic Barossa flavours but with layers and layers going on. The fruit is concentrated, with similar characteristics as the nose but great texture, the right amount of acid. Length, well, length for days!
A cracking wine that needs to be purchased in a minimum of 6pcks so you can enjoy some and squirrel some away too. It's that good!
Alternative Slow-Cooked & Braised Dishes
Getting sick of the colder weather but also love the fact the house smells great from all the slow-cooked meals. Check out these alternatives to my beef ossobuco and enjoy!
Happy Cooking & Happy Eating Friends!
- 1.2 kg ossobuco cut into 4 pieces
- 1 carrot
- 1 celery stick
- ½ red onion
- 250 ml red wine
- 250 ml beef stock
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 sprig rosemary
- 1 star anise
- 1/3 cup flour
- 440 ml tin tomatoes
- 1 orange
- 800 g russet or brushed potatoes
- 100 g butter room temperature
- 3 anchovies
- 2 tsp capers
- ½ cup parsley
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 150 ml olive oil
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 400 g green beans
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Chef Knives
- Chopping board
- ovenproof dish with lid
- large saucepan
- frying pan
- mini food processor
- measuring/weighing utensils
- Heat the oven to 140c
- Dice the carrot, onion & celery finely. Crush the garlic
- Cut the layer of thick fat/sinew from around the exterior of the ossobuco – this will help the ossobuco keep it’s shape rather than curl up
- Flour the ossobuco and sear it in a heavy bottom/ovenproof casserole dish – do this in stages so as not to crowd the pan *see tips*
- Remove the seared ossobuco and add the vegetables cooking for 3-4 minutes until softened
- Add the tinned tomatoes, wine, herbs, stock, juice and zest of 1 orange and bring to a gentle simmer
- Add the ossobuco back to the pot, covering with liquid
- Cover the pot with a lid and cook in the oven for 2 hours or until the ossobuco is falling off the bone *see tips*
- Peel and dice the mashed potatoes into even sized pieces approx. 3cm in size
- Boil in heavily salted water for approx. 15-20mins until you can pierce easily with a knife/fork
- Drain the potatoes and allow the steam to release for a minute or two
- Using a potato ricer, mash the potatoes and then add in the butter
- Mix the potatoes and butter together gently being careful not to overwork the potatoes *see tips*
- Place all the ingredients into a mini food processor and blend together
- Leave in the fridge until ready to serve
- When the ossobuco is cooked start the green beans
- Fry in a hot pan with oil and a generous sprinkling of salt for 3-4 minutes
- sear the ossobuco in stages so the pan remains hot and you get a nice sear – colour=flavour
- I cooked my ossobuco for 2 hours, and the meat was tender with a little bite to it. Check meat after 1.5 hours and then again after 2 hours as time can vary a little depending upon thickness
- don’t overwork your potatoes; mix the room temp butter in gently but quickly. The more you work the potatoes, the more gluten you release, making the potatoes a little gummy
- you can make everything (except the green beans) in advance so it’s ideal for a dinner party! Reheat the ossobuco in a warm oven (120c) for about 45mins-1hour