Tuesday, September 23, 2008

faux is the new gourmet

the quest for new foods continues and last night i tried my hand at osso bucco. i went down to the local farmer's market on saturday in the hopes of scoring some veal shanks but by the time i got to the meat man he was wiped out. out of lamb shanks too. poop. he did have some beef shanks though so i gave 'em a go.

my friend c-dog loaned me her giada cookbook and i also came across another recipe calling specifically for beef shanks - a faux osso bucco if you will. since i didn't have everything either recipe called for i opted to take lil' snippets from each for my own version of low rent osso bucco.

speaking of low rent - beef shanks are cheap. this pack of two was only $4.

i guess beef shank is just a glorified term for soup bone.

i seasoned the shanks with salt and pepper and then dredged them in a lil' flour. while i was doing that i got my skillet ready.

when it was good and hot i browned the shanks on both sides and then set them aside. to the same skillet i added chopped carrots, garlic and onion and let them cook for about five minutes.
(the fancy name for this veggie mix is mirepoix [i learned that from michael ruhlman] but i didn't have celery so i guess it was a faux mirepoix).

after the veggies were tender i added about a cup and a half of red wine (both recipes called for white but like any good wine drinker all i had in the house was a cabernet)
and let it reduce for about 8 minutes or so.

once it was reduced i added a cup of veggie broth (one recipe called for beef stock and the other called for chicken stock but all i had was some vegetable bouillon. when i said this was faux osso bucco i meant it!). both recipes called for some kind of tomato too - one was diced, canned tomatoes and the other was tomato paste but keeping with the tradition of missing ingredients all i had in the house was a can of whole tomatoes. i chopped 'em up
and tossed 'em in.

(i love this brand - it's like a buck at marc's!)

i put the shanks back in the skillet and also tossed in a sprig of rosemary for good measure.

giada says to do all this in a roasting pan, cover the pan with foil and then braise. the faux recipe suggested a dutch oven. i just decided to keep working with my cast iron though and covered it in foil. i put these in the oven at 350 and cooked them for two hours - flipping the shanks every 30 minutes.

now, i didn't start this meal - chopping veggies or anything - until about 7:00 not realizing (or forgetting) that it took two hours. to keep my hunger in check i made a lil' tomato basil salad. the tomatoes came from my dad's garden. delish!

and here's the faux osso bucco.

this smelled soooooooooooo good. and it tasted fucking killer!

and here's the finished product.
please note that i am using a spoon. the meat was so tender i could use a spoon! it melted in my mouth!

i paired this meal with a labbat blue cuz i used all the wine in the dish. you'll also notice two slices of cheapo white schwebel's 'taliano. *sigh* what i wouldn't have given for a warm, crusty french loaf to soak up that goodness.
oh well, i guess them's the breaks.

this would have been so f'n good over mashed potatoes or rice or grits - i don't know why the hell i didn't make one of those. i will tonight though. leftover osso bucco over creamy grits. yummmmm.......

1 comment:

Xenia said...

Damn that looks good! I'll see if I can try the real deal while I'm over here. Hopefully it's as good as your faux version.