Osso Buco

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by jpleech, Dec 23, 2010.

  1. jpleech

    jpleech

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    I'm making osso buco for the first time tomorrow and something doesn't seem quite right with the recipe that I've chosen.  The recipe comes from the book American Brasserie by Rick Tramonto and has never disappointed me in the past.  The recipe calls for 6 veal shanks that are 2 inches thick, but since I'm cooking for 3, I've opted to cut the recipe in half and have just purchased 3, 2 inch veal shanks.  The combined weight comes in at just under 2.5 lbs.  Where the red flag comes up is when the recipe asks to braise them in a 350 degree oven for 3 hours.  To me 3 hours seems like overkill and will result in a very dry piece of expensive meat.  But, since I've never actually cooked veal, I could be entirely incorrect.  So what do you think.  Is 3 hours too long or is it much ado about nothing?
     
  2. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    Three hours is about right, remember, you are braising, that means you are cooking low and slow in a moisture rich atmosphere.
     
  3. jpleech

    jpleech

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    Thanks, Pete.  I wasn't totally confident that it would be OK, and since it's for xmas I wanted to be for sure
     
  4. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    Braising is completely different from roasting remember.  Roasting depends on temperature and weight while braising just relies on low temperature and time.  It doesn't matter if you wanted to braise just one veal shank or 20.  The braising time would still be the same.  If it were me though I would lower the temp to 325 to be on the safe side, 350 is a bit high for braising imho.
     
  5. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    One reason I like braising, it is real hard to foul it up, as long as you don't let the braising liquid boil and just keep it at a gentle simmer. Whether the oven is at 350°F, 325°F, or 300°F, the braising liquid prevents the temperature within from exceeding 212°F, but, for me, it is better at 180°-190°F.

    Osso buco was a standard menu item at Le Bistro and three hours was a MINIMUM time in a 300°F oven, most of the time I went 3 1/2-4 hours. Don't rely on time! Remember, the answer to "how long do I cook it?" is "UNTIL IT IS DONE!"
     
  6. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    One other point: If you're cutting the recipe in half, watch the diameter of your pot and/or the amount of liquid.

    Braising liquid should come up about 2/3-3/4  the height of the food, not cover it. So, with 2" shank sections, you're looking at about 1 1/2" of liquid. If the pot is too wide you'll have to adjust for it. Or use a narrower pot.

     Braises also benefit from being made the day before and getting reheated.

    Other than that, as others have indicated, low and slow is the best way to go.
     
  7. gonefishin

    gonefishin

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        Hope everything turned out well.  Osso buco is one of those dishes that are sooooo good, yet many restaurants foul it up.  I believe, if you find a restaurant that does it well, you have found a restaurant that you can guess does many other things well. Good osso buco takes deliberate time and cannot be rushed, savor it!

      dan!
     
  8. bscepter

    bscepter

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    i have always wondered about this. when you braise, wouldn't the portion of meat under the liquid essentially be stewing, while the portion above the liquid would be steaming?
     
  9. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    My considered response is, I dunno. And you can quote me on that.

    Keep in mind that an important part of the braising process is the rainstorm than exists inside the pot. Is there a technical name for that?