Adapted from John Sarich’s Food & Wine of the Pacific Northwest


Sometimes here at she cooks…he cleans, by the time dinner is served we are just too darn hungry to set up a photo shoot, no matter how lovely the plate of food is.  This was one of those times.  Although I don’t have a beautiful photo from the main event, this is what was left-over – a lonely serving of  tender,veal shank with bits of sauce.  The recipe is well worth sharing, despite not having an appetizing photo!

There’s probably hundreds of variations on ossobuco, but this recipe is one that I often come back to for its hearty flavors. Although traditionally served with risotto, polenta, or mashed potatoes, this time the veal was paired with mashed cannellini beans, recipe courtesy of Our Life in Food.  (You may note these beans are chock full of bacon, which seems to be a theme here lately.)


  • 3 or 4 veal shank portions (cut crosswise from shank, about 1 1/2 inches thick)
  • 1/4 cup chopped bacon or pancetta
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil (EVO)
  • 2 onions, cut in half lengthwise and sliced thin
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes (I used Muir Glen fire-roasted tomatoes)
  • 2 T chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 T chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 T chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 t grated orange zest
  • 1/4 t grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 t allspice
  • 1 T tomato paste
  • 1 cup veal stock (I substituted beef stock from the pantry)
  • 1/2 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Kosher salt, pepper

Liberally salt and pepper the veal shanks on both sides.  Preheat oven to 350F.

Add olive oil and bacon to a medium-hot heavy pot or Dutch oven.  Render fat from bacon and cook until lightly brown; add the veal shanks.  Brown on both sides, then remove the shanks.

In the same pan, saute onion, bell pepper, and garlic until tender.  Add tomatoes, cover, and simmer for around ten minutes.

Add parsley, rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, orange zest, nutmeg and allspice.  Mix thoroughly.  Then stir in tomato paste, veal/beef stock, and wine.  Add veal shanks and cover.

Place pot in oven; cook for 90 minutes to 2 hours or until meat is very tender.  Ready to serve!  Don’t forget the delicious marrow in those bones!

And don’t forget the soundtrack, either!


First up, the best- because he’s the only one, most likely- Jewish county singing, mystery writing, Imus friending Texan around- Kinky Friedman, with his legendary Sold American with the classic, and apt “Get Your Biscuits In The Oven And Your Buns In Bed”! He’s one of a kind, that Kinky.

joniAnd who doesn’t adore Joni? She goes with everything, but I find Hejira haunting, both intimate and vast all in a single song.  If you haven’t heard this one in a while, give it a spin.