Shrimp and Duck Gumbo
…You want a REALLY hearty and rich recipe…trust me, this has a good kick to it…try this!!!
8oz andouille sausage sliced into 1/4″ thick rounds (used Italian spicy sausage)
2 whole duck legs (used 2 duck breasts, with skin on)
2 medium onions chopped
3 medium stalks celery chopped (about 1 1/2 C)- skipped *dies*
1 medium green bell pepper chopped
1 medium red bell pepper chopped
6 cloves garlic minced
chili peppers minced (I used 3 whole serranos)- didnt add, but dont let that stop you!
1/4 C duck fat (clarified butter or lard will work as well- I used 1/2 stick unsalted butter)
1/4 C flour
4 C low sodium chicken stock
7 oz okra chopped
1/4 C chopped flat leaf parsley leaves and stems
2 bay leaves
2 Tbs tomato paste
2 tsp sweet paprika
1/2 tsp marjoram
1/4 tsp ground mustard
1/4 tsp dry thyme
dash of cayenne*
3/4 lbs large shrimp
3 C cooked rice
chopped parsley (used dried)
Heat an 8 quart dutch oven or other heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat until very hot. Generously salt and pepper the duck legs then add them to the pot, skin side down. Add the sausage slices around the duck in a single layer and allow to brown. Flip the sausage slices as they brown then flip the duck legs when they no longer stick to the pan. Transfer the sausage to a plate as they finish browning then transfer the duck legs when they are nice and brown on both sides.
The pan should now have about 1 tablespoon of fat rendered from the sausages and duck. If there is more, drain the excess off into a ramekin and set aside. To make the mirepoix, add the onions and celery along with a generous pinch of salt and saute until soft and translucent. Add the two bell peppers, garlic and chili pepper of your choice and continue to saute until the onions are starting to caramelize and the bell peppers are nice and soft. Take the pot off the heat and set aside.
Now we’re going to make the roux. What we’re doing here is caramelizing the flour until it’s dark chocolate brown. To avoid burning it, it needs constant supervision and stirring which will take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour.
Don’t use a non-stick pan or silicon utensil to stir as they are typically not safe to use at temperatures as high as this mixture will get. I’d recommend using a stainless steel whisk or a flat edged wooden paddle. If you use a wooden paddle, be prepared to have it scorch a little. Lastly be very careful not to splash this on yourself as it’s a guaranteed trip to the ER if you do.
(I just used my dutch oven all the way)
Add any reserved fat you have from the duck and sausage to a 1/4 C measuring cup and top off with duck fat, clarified butter, or lard. Do not use regular butter, as the milk solids in it will burn. (As long as you keep an eye on it, and at low heat and keep stirring, this wont happen, trust me)
Add the fat to to a medium sized sauce pan and heat over medium low heat until very hot. Add the flour and immediately start stirring.
Be sure you keep every part of the roux moving so it does not burn. As long as it’s not smoking you can turn the heat up in small increments but turn it down if you start to see smoke. As the roux reaches a medium brown color (like beef gravy), turn the heat down a little to slow the process down. You want to get it to the color of dark brown, but there is a very fine line between that and burnt. And I found it helpful to add one to two teaspoons of water, to spread it out as it cooked.
As soon as it’s reached the desired color, remove the pot from the heat and stir in some of the mirepoix to bring the temperature down quickly. Once it’s cool enough to touch, have a taste. If it tastes bitter, you need to throw it out and start over. Add the roux and chicken stock into the large pot with the rest of the mirepoix. Put the pot over a medium high flame and whisk until the roux is dissolved and the mixture begins to boil.
Turn the heat down to maintain a gentle simmer and add the duck, sausage and the rest of the gumbo ingredients. Cover with a lid set slightly ajar to allow steam to escape and simmer until the duck is tender (about 1- 1 1/2 hours).
In the meantime, cook the rice, and peel and devein the shrimp. (I used half a bag of pre-frozen, pre-cooked shrimp…and they usually come deveined already :P I also left the tails on, to give a bit more oomph in the shrimpiness)
When the duck is tender, remove the legs from the gumbo and allow them to cool enough to handle. Take the meat off the bones and add it back to the pot. (All breast meat- no bones- just slice up to more bite sized servings, how cool is that :P)
Taste for seasonings and add more salt and pepper as needed and adjust the spiciness with cayenne pepper. Turn the heat up and bring the gumbo to a boil then add the shrimp, stirring to submerge. Cover immediately and remove the pot from the heat. The residual heat will gently cook the shrimp to perfection in about 7 minutes (use less time if your shrimp are small).
You wont need much in the way of salt- it’ll have plenty from the sausages :P
To serve, put a small amount of rice in the bottom of a shallow bowl and top with the gumbo. Sprinkle with parsley and serve with hot sauce and bread.
If there is any cooked rice at the bottom of the pan, scrape that off, that is the GOOD stuff ;)
Southwestern Green Chili Cheddar Corn Bread
1 1/2 cups cornmeal (I used 1 1/2 cups Quick Grits- its also known as Hominy- the only difference is the texture!)
½ cup of a can of creamed corn*
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (used 1/2 cup gluten free flour*)
6 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk (used 1/2 cup lowfat milk, and 1/2 cup lowfat yogurt)
1 to 1 ½ cups sharp cheddar*
1/4 cup olive oil
3 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped (used 1 can mild green chilies)
1/2 teaspoon allspice*
1/2 teaspoon cayenne*
1/2 teaspoon coriander*
1 small onion, chopped and sauteed until slightly browned*
2 1/2 cloves chopped fresh garlic*
dusting of paprika on the top*
1. In a bowl, combine the first six ingredients. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, milk and yogurt. Add to the dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. As I noted above- what I also did was saute’ an onion until just browned, and threw that into the mix. The oil that I used to saute the onion was also reserved and combined with the original 1/4 cup of oil.
~ Make sure you stir it all thoroughly folks, you may have leftover grits/cornmeal still deep in the bowl !
Stir in jalapenos/green chilies. Pour into a greased 9-in. square baking pan.
(used my round springform… sue me :P)
2. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cut into squares or wedges. Serve warm.
…No folks, what you REALLY need to do is cook this MUCH longer than that, due to the extra wet ingredients. So I would say more like 35 minutes and just poke a toothpick in the center, it should come out clean.
P.S. I was SORELY TEMPTED to add some cooked bacon / back bacon to this - however, I did want to make this dish somewhat vegan friendly (and to make it vegan, I would say just use soy milk and skip the bacon and cheese - or use soy cheese :P) … that and, well, I had already made those chocolate bacon cookies and didnt want to over do it :P
When cutting or seeding hot peppers, make sure you use rubber or plastic gloves to protect your hands. Avoid touching your face or *cough* personal extremities :P
~ Upon tasting, very good- though I would do only two things different-
1.) Saute’ the garlic as well (left it in raw when cooking) , it was way too strong- and this is coming from a garlic lover mind you :P
…Roasted garlic would certainly be a good idea as well, I’ll keep that option open :3
2.) I’d also recommend putting on a light layer of butter on the top (or maybe a butter pat or two, broken into bits over the top)… it was a good suggestion that I took in at the party :)
Red Lentil & Split Yellow Pea Dal
Think this is from “Aarti’s Party” :3
1 cup red lentils (or ½ red + ½ yellow)
1 onion, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 piece of ginger, peeled and minced
3 medium tomatoes, diced (used one can tomato sauce, and one fresh tomato chopped in)
2 cups water, plus more as the lentils cook
cooked mashed potatoes (skipped, but dont let that stop you)
3 green serrano chilies, deviened, seeded and chopped (optional, they have a nice kick to them)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp black mustard seeds (used regular ground mustard)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (used ground)
1/2 tsp (generous) turmeric powder
1/2 tsp chipotle powder (didnt add, but again, dont let that stop you)
1/2 tsp paprika (I used smoked)
1/2 sprig curry leaves (used 1 tsp curry powder)
1 tsp garam masala
dash of cayenne pepper
A large bunch of greens (skipped again, but you can add if you like)
First, chop the onions and tomatoes and compose the spice mixes. In one small bowl you will mix the mustard and cumin seeds, in the other you will have the paprika, turmeric and chipotle.
~ What I did here, actually, was grab a large saucepan and saute’ the onions, garlic and spices first in the oil on high, then turned it down to more of a medium high, once the onions got transluscent.
Soak the lentils for 30 minutes. After I drain them, I add the 2 cups of water to the pot and place it on the stove over medium-high heat. Generally it takes my lentils 45 minutes to reach a soupy consistency, but this can vary depending on the desired texture.
As Aarti notes, it is CRUCIAL to not add salt while the lentils are cooking. It’s tempting, I know, but don’t do it. When the lentils are actually cooked, add more salt than what she calls for; one teaspoon doesn’t do it, so add salt to taste, starting with the base one teaspoon.
~ Then, dumped in the can of tomato sauce and a chopped fresh tomato, plus two cups water, and let it cook down for that 45 minutes. IF it starts to get too thick (and it will, especially if you throw in those mashed potatoes) add in a cup of water (you might need two cups, depending on how thick / thin you like it) and let it keep cooking. You can always add more tomatoes, but I found that this was more than enough.
Let it bubble for a little bit more. You can add the greens right in, let them cook for about 5 to 10 minutes. Season to taste with fresh cilantro- this has to go in dead last, or youll lose the punch of the herb) lime and/or salt & pepper. And have those tasty pita chips ready or naan to go with, just yum :)
Cranberry Bliss Bars
Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars
recipe from bakespace.com
For shortbread base:
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, softened
1 and 1/4 cups brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 t ground ginger
1 t vanilla
1/4 t salt
1 teaspoon baking powder* (It didnt call for this in the original recipe, but, I would have to say it made the bars come out a lot better)
1 1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup minced dried cranberries
1/4 cup white chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used white chocolate chips as is)
1/4 cup minced candied ginger (you can find this in the health food section, or with the dried fruit section in your supermarket)
4 oz cream cheese, softened (Used one whole box (8 oz) plus a little extra left over- it made a difference in covering a cake pan this big and Id recommend using it all, especially with all of the sugar content!)
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 T butter, softened
1 t vanilla
2 T dried cranberries, minced
1/3 cup white chocolate chips, melted
~ This I kind of skipped- the white chocolate didnt melt right, no matter what I did (even WITH the microwave method) >_< INSTEAD, I left the white chocolate topping out and just threw on the cranberries as you see here.
* UPDATE: Thanks to a friend who let me know, when it comes to melting white chocolate, you need to do it the SAME WAY as you would melt DARK chocolate-
~ Get a double boiler ~
(fill the bottom one with water, the top gets the chips)
and then add 1/4 cup of half and half and melt on a low simmer until you get the desired thickness…
….WHICH THE RECIPE FAILED TO MENTION!!! ARRRGH >_<
Well- at least now I know, and knowing is half the battle, or something like that :P
Preheat oven to 350 and lightly grease a 9×13 pan. Beat butter and sugar together for the cake base, and add eggs/vanilla beating until fluffy. Sift together flour, ginger, salt and baking powder and then add to the butter/sugar mixture beating well. Fold in the cranberries, chocolate and candied ginger. Spread thick batter in pan and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes or until light golden. (With my slow oven I had to add on an extra five minutes- lovely golden brown)
When cake is cooled, mix all frosting ingredients together and spread a thin layer over the cake. (thin layer….shyeah, riiiiight :P) Immediately sprinkle with the minced cranberries. Next use a sandwich bag with a small corner cut (as your homemade pastry bag) add melted white chocolate and drizzle the chocolate over the cake. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm, cut into triangles and serve.
Merry Chrismukkah folks, this is something you can serve at your holiday feast or anytime :)
*SECOND UPDATE: Very good and of course, very fattening :P
If you REALLY want to make it a bit different- you can add:
~ lemon zest / orange zest to batter/frosting
~ lemon /orange extract, to same
OR ~ lemon/orange liquor *hic*
200 grams of Pork belly (about 1/2 pound)
4 or 5 cups of chopped kimchi (used one jar mild- but if you like it spicy, get the REAL thing, not the American ‘fake’ version XD)
1 tbs sugar, 1 tsp of hot pepper flakes, 1 tbs hot pepper paste- I would recommend 1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons sugar, both the kim chi and the pork belly were SALTY *dies*
onion, green onions
half a package of tofu (firm)
sesame oil and water
1 cup miso (used 1 packet instant miso soup)
ramen / glass noodles (optional, I added)
Ok, let’s start!
1.) In a large shallow pot, put in one cup water, bring to a boil, then add the miso soup.
2.) Put some chopped kimchi and juice.
3.) Add sliced onion, hot pepper paste, hot pepper flakes, sugar, and green onions, and pork belly (or tuna).
Here is where I strayed from the recipe a bit- instead of just throwing in the pork belly, as is, I put it in the oven on some parchment paper and a small baking sheet, and basted it with a bit of hoisin. Baked at 350F, for about 15 minutes, then drained…..SO GOOD :3 Then just throw the cooked pork belly right in to the pot!
4.) Pour water over top until all the ingredients are submerged. If its not enough, add one more cup water.
5.) Close the lid of the pot and boil it 25 or 30 minutes. (first 10 minutes will be high heat and then turn down the heat over medium heat)
6.). Add some tofu and boil it 5 minutes more and put some sesame oil right before serving.
Very easy to make and quite tasty- if you want it vegan, just skip the pork belly, of course- and you can always add more chili pepper / sriracha to kick up the heat level…I bet this would be REAL good with a teaspoon or so of gokujang- spicy bean paste- in it :)
Pumpkin Eggnog Cheesecake Bars
Eggnog Cheesecake Bars
Yield: 18 bars
Prep Time: 20 minutes | Bake Time: 1 hour, total
12 graham crackers, finely ground (1½ cups of crumbs)
¾ cup + 3 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided (see above note)
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
16 ounces (2 blocks) cream cheese, at room temperature (and you can use less fat Neufchatel…I actually used one block regular and one block Neuf)
1 egg yolk
Make sure you separate ALL of the eggs, and have the whites in a separate metal bowl, chilling in the fridge!
¾ cup pumpkin eggnog
*IF you want more of a pumpkin flavor, use maybe ½ cup of canned pureed pumpkin (NOT that pumpkin pie filling, that crap is just…wrong >_<)
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon brandy
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon + 1½ teaspoons all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus extra for dusting
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8-inch or 9-inch square baking pan, then line with parchment paper; set aside.
3. Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining ¾ cup granulated sugar and beat for an additional couple of minutes, until smooth. Add the yolk, eggnog, brandy and vanilla and beat again until completely combined and smooth. Finally, beat in the flour, nutmeg and salt and mix until smooth.
Now as for those egg whites:
Take those out of the fridge- you can also add a touch of cream of tartar- and use your electric mixer to beat into white foamy peaks. GENTLY FOLD the egg whites into the filling until blended.
4. Pour the filling over the crust. Set the pan in a larger pan (a 9×13-inch works for this), and add enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the baking pan. Bake until just set, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the baking pan from the water bath, and transfer to a wire rack. Let cool for 30 minutes, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
5. Cut into 1½x3-inch bars. Lightly dust the tops of the bars with freshly grated nutmeg just before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Note: If you don’t wish to use the brandy, you can simply omit it.
(Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart)
These will be the lightest, fluffiest and tastiest cheesecake bars you will make in your entire life, no joke. I happen to like the method of ‘fluffing’ a cheesecake since more often than not they come out way too heavy!!!
Enjoy the fattening goodness folks :P
ALSO PLEASE NOTE (almost forgot) - PLEASE be careful when cutting these/serving, because the one drawback to a fluffy cheesecake is that it falls apart on you XD)
Dijon Chicken with Chantrelles and Toasted Walnuts
350 gram package fresh linguine, cooked (I used one package wide linguine noodles)
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (pounded one package of chicken tenderloins)
3/4 cup gluten free flour, seasoned (or enough to coat chicken)
1 cup chanterelle mushrooms (if not on hand use button…I used regular shrooms myself :P)
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves minced garlic (used 6….mmmmm…gaaaaaaaaaaaarlic :P)
1 heaping teaspoon dried sage
good shake of dried parsley
Salt and pepper to season
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
chopped chives to garnish (didnt add, but dont let that stop you)
First, get a Ziploc bag, and put the breasts/chicken tenderloins, seal up, and tenderize them with a hammer or other blunt object. As for the gluten free flour, I would recommend it- it actually dissolves quicker and thickens the sauce a lot better! Youll also want to get a smaller bowl, to put in the flour- and mix with the salt, pepper, and other herbs in that bowl.
Heat olive oil in a large heavy bottomed frying pan over medium low heat.
If you still have the ziploc back with the chicken breasts, dump in a good bit of the flour into the bag, seal it up and shake until all the breasts are evenly coated.
Add chicken breasts, garlic, season with salt and pepper and continue to fry the chicken until completely cooked.
Remove chicken from pan and hold in a warm oven.
Add to the pan:
4 oz white wine (2 cups)
Simmer until volume is reduced by half. Then add:
2 cups whipping cream
3 tbsp Dijon mustard (I added one more, the cream base kind of overwhelmed the Dijon at first)
Salt and pepper to taste
Simmer until sauce thickens enough to coat a spoon. Return chicken to the sauce, then add the chanterelle mushrooms and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes.
If the sauce doesnt thicken - you should still have at least a good spoonful or two of seasoned flour left in the bowl! Just add a teaspoon at a time, (I really needed only 2 teaspoons, if that) and then let it keep simmering until it gets good and thick (should take about 25 - 30 minutes, around there)
Serve over cooked linguine. Sprinkle with toasted walnuts and chopped chives.
If you have any leftovers, make sure you save the pasta water and just sprinkle on about 1 to 2 tablespoons to keep it from sticking.
Other than that enjoy!
…Should anyone be weak of heart, or not like the idea of eating bunny as part of a dish…may I please recommend….DONT LOOK !!!
3 pounds rabbit meat, cleaned and cut into pieces (found a packaged whole one, and asked the butcher to do the dirty work XD)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup all-purpose flour (used Gluten-free flour- it thickened the sauce a LOT more, so make sure you have an extra 1/2 cup water to add in- a bit at a time- to loosen it up)
1/2 pound bacon, diced
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 carrots, peeled and chopped (optional, but I added in)
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup water
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules (went with one ‘packet’ of no sodium chicken bouillon)
1 tablespoon currant jelly (didnt have- I went with a tablespoon of blackberry jam, seedless)
10 black peppercorns, crushed
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
2 teaspoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
First- prep: peel and chop carrots; chop shallots and garlic; with the flour, just get a bowl, add the pepper, salt, thyme and rosemary (you can just crush it with your fingers, or a mortar and pestle) and mix well….then throw the seasoned flour in a Large Ziploc. Then just toss your meat in there and shake it around until all of the meat is coated.
1. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain on paper towels and set aside. Sprinkle rabbit with salt and coat with 1/3 cup flour, shaking off excess. Brown rabbit in remaining bacon fat. Remove from skillet, along with all but 2 tablespoons of the fat, and reserve.
2. Saute shallots and garlic in skillet for about 4 minutes, until tender. Stir in wine, 1 cup water and bouillon. Heat to boiling, then stir in jelly, peppercorns, bay leaf, rosemary and thyme. Return rabbit and bacon to skillet. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat to low. Cover and let simmer about 1 1/2 hours or until rabbit is tender.
3. Remove bay leaf and discard. Place rabbit on a warm platter and keep warm while preparing gravy.
4. To Make Gravy: Stir lemon juice into skillet with cooking liquid. Combine 3 tablespoons water with 2 tablespoons flour and mix together; stir mixture into skillet over low heat. Finally, stir in thyme. Pour gravy over stew and serve, or pour into a gravy boat and serve on the side.
Taken with a bit of leftover basil pesto couscous (out of a box)
…Maker forgive me, it was deeeeeelishus :3 (Maybe needed just a bit more salt, but I wanted to control that)
Apple-Beer Bundt with Dulche De Leche Glaze
Adapted from PortugueseCooking.com
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter (about 1 and 1/2 sticks)
4 eggs, separated
1 cup Guiness (or any other dark, flavourful beer)
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon (used apple pie spice)
1/2 tsp salt
Zest of 1 lemon
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and finely diced (this I didnt have- but I did have 3 self-serve containers of the leftover unsweetened applesauce…about a cup and a half)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup icing sugar, sifted
1/4 cup dulce de leche
1 tbsp Guiness (or any other dark, flavourful beer)
Preheat oven to 350F. Generously butter a 10-inch Bundt pan, then dust with flour, tapping to remove any excess.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in beer and vanilla extract, mixing until smooth.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, lemon zest and salt. Add to the wet ingredients, and stir until the mixture just comes together. Fold in the apples and pecans.
In a third bowl, use a hand mixer to beat the egg whites into stiff peaks. Using a spatula, gently fold the whites into the batter until just barely blended, working carefully so as not to deflate the mixture. Scrape the mixture into the prepared Bundt pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.
Bake in preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, or until the cake springs back to the touch and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes before gently turning out onto a rack to finish cooling completely.
While the cake is cooling, prepare the icing by whisking together the icing sugar, dulce de leche and beer until smooth. Set aside.
Once the cake is cooled to room temperature, move it to a pretty serving plate and slowly pour the icing onto the top, letting some run down the sides and middle of the cake. Let stand for half an hour before serving to allow the icing to set.
Dulce de Leche (Milk Caramel)
I know that most of the world makes this by boiling the milk inside a closed can, but honestly, that scares the bejesus out of me and according to the Carnation can label I pulled this technique from, is not recommended by them (likely because they do not want to get sued, but still). This method works just as well.
Pour one can (14 ounce) sweetened condensed milk into top of double-boiler pan; cover. Place over boiling water. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 40 to 50 minutes, or until thick and light caramel-colored.
Remove from heat. Whisk until smooth.
Pretty tasty folks…though it kinda has a thickness of a pound-cake!
Make sure you cook this for the required 60 minutes (maybe an extra 5) and I think you’ll be set :)
Osso Buco with Polenta
Ingredients for 4 persons:
4 veal osso buco steaks (veal shanks cut 2 inches thick)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1/2 glass of white wine (used 1/2 red shiraz)
1/2 cup beef stock, more to add if needed
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 stalks celery, finely chopped
4 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
4 leaves fresh sage (had it leftover from my squash recipe, I figured why not) chopped
1 large can roma tomatoes
2 teaspoons tomato paste to thicken a bit
1/2 teaspoon sugar (optional)
1 package pre-made polenta (if you have it thawed from your freezer- remember to put it over your sink, poke a good sized hole, and drain it ahead of time! Youll thank me, trust me!!!)
Salt and Pepper to taste
For the “gremolata”:
1 clove garlic, very finely chopped or pressed with the garlic press
Zest of 1/2 lemon, grated- plus juice of said lemon
small handful Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
Put the olive and onion in a large pan and let it cook on a very gentle fire until the onion becomes transparent.
In the meantime, cut the osso buco steaks along the outer membrane so they do not curl while cooking and coat them with a little flour.
Add the osso buco steaks to the onion and butter and brown them on both sides. Then, take them right out of the pan briefly on a plate, and then throw in the veggies. You can add 1/2 cup of the beef stock to flavor as you go along.
Add the wine and burn the alcohol off by increasing the flame.
Then throw the veal right back in, and then add the 1 can tomatoes. (I prefer them whole myself) Cover (leaving a small hole for the steam to pass through) and lower the flame. Make sure you stir off and on, and you can always squash the tomatoes a bit with a wooden spoon as you stir.
Cook for at least 1 and a half hour or until the meat is very tender. Make sure to add more beef stock as needed and turn them over occasionally, so that the osso buco steaks do not stick to the pan.
You can also add the polenta right in- it cooks quick- only like about 5 to 10 minutes, if that…which makes it nice, thick and yummy :)
To prepare the gremolata, finely chop the parsley and the garlic clove (or use a garlic press for this) and grate the zest of 1 lemon.
Mix together and sprinkle on top of the osso buco steaks a few minutes before turning off the heat. This MUST go in DEAD LAST or you will lose the punch of the fresh parsley and lemon juice/zest.
Season with salt and pepper according to your taste (beware that the stock might already be quite salty). Or even a good chunk of fresh grated Parmesan…and crusty, toasted ciabatta bread drizzled with black pepper and olive oil…*drools*
The BEST part is the marrow from the shank, by the way….if you leave that on your plate, chances are I’ll snatch it away from you :P
NOM NOM NOM :P