Frank and I went out and got the outdoor decorations up. We are still removing light bulbs from the tree but we only have one section left before we can start putting lights back onto the tree. When Frank was done needing my help outside, Little Miss and I made cookies. I can't share the cookies with you right now but if you come back on the 16th you will see my post on our Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. Not only will you get to see my cookies but there will be numerous Christmas Cookie recipes being shared that day.
While we were doing all of that fun stuff, our dinner was in the oven and it was starting to smell pretty darn good in this house. Dinner was early today because we had a late breakfast and then skipped lunch.
I love slow, easy Sundays when we have nothing on the calendar. It is a perfect time to make a slowly braised Sunday Supper. Today I made Osso Bucco, which literally means "Bone with a Hole". They are traditionally made with Veal shanks but any shanks can be used and today I used Beef Shanks. They are easy and delicious. I served them today with Mashed Potatoes and Glazed Carrots.
In Europe the marrow is taken from the bone and smeared on bread. Tingting said that in China this dish is made with Pork and they suck the marrow out with a straw. I have never tried the marrow however my Pops used to love it and just ate it with a fork. Of course, Pops loved eating fat too. I would cut all the fat from my meat and he would grab it off my plate and eat it. I don't know if marrow is actually like fat but that is what it reminds me of so I don't eat it.
Use nice, meaty shanks that have been patted dry and seasoned liberally on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat 2 T. of Olive Oil in the bottom of a dutch oven over med high heat. Place beef shanks in single layer into hot oil and sear on both sides. This can be done in batches if need be.
Prepare the vegetables so they are ready when the shanks are finished browning.
Once the beef shanks are browned on both sides remove them to a plate.
Add another T of olive oil, if needed, to the same dutch oven and bring the temperature back up to med high. Add the vegetables, garlic, thyme, basil and rosemary stir and cook until vegetables are coated and starting to soften.
Add the tomato sauce and water.
Nestle the beef shanks into the pan, cover and bake at 350* for 3-4 hrs.
We poured a James and Bell 2012 Zinfandel to go along with the Braised Beef Shanks.
This wine was part of a Christmas Package from my brother and sister-in-law.
Osso Bucco (Braised Beef Shanks)
1 meaty beef shank per person
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 T. olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, scraped and sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t. dried thyme, crushed
1 t. dried basil, crushed
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 (12 oz) can tomato sauce
1/4 c. water
Pat beef shanks dry and season liberally with salt and pepper. Heat 2 T. of oil in the bottom of a dutch oven over med high heat. Sear the beef shanks on both sides about 5-7 minutes per side. Remove to a plate. In same pan, add 1 T. oil (if necessary), add the vegetables and seasonings to the hot oil, cook and stir, scraping up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan, until vegetables start to soften. Add the tomato sauce, swirl the water in the sauce can to release any sauce stuck to the can and add to the pot. Nestle the beef shanks into the pan with the sauce and vegetables along with any juices collected from the shanks. Cover and place in a preheated 350* oven for 3-4 hrs. Print Recipe