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Osso Buco (Traditional)

6 thick chunks veal shank (between 3 inches and 3 1/2 inches thick)
6 shallots, coarsely chopped
1 cup all purpose flour, seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1 to 2 TBSPS sweet butter or olive oil
3 medium carrots
3 stalks celery, including some leaves
3 to 6 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 to 2 TBS fresh basil, snipped
1 tsp fresh thyme, snipped
3 bay leaves
Pinch rosemary (optional)
zest from 1/4 lemon
1 cup white wine
1 cup veal or chicken stock
Tomato puree as needed
Freshly chopped parsley and fresh celery leaves for garnish.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

You'll have to special order the veal shank. Standard cut is around
an inch and a half, but you want a rich, slow-cooked dish so hold
out for the thick stuff. And make sure they leave the marrow in.
That's what gives this dish flavor.

Make tomato puree with plum or roma tomatoes, peeled and seeded
and pureed in blender.

In a Dutch oven or deep (ovenproof) saute' pan on the cooktop heat
butter or olive oil and saute onion and shallots until they begin
to become tender. Coat veal shanks with seasoned flour and add to
pan to brown on each side (keep cut side of bone up so marrow
doesn't come out. Don't turn the shanks on their sides.)

When shanks are browned, add (scraped or peeled and) chopped carrot,
and sweat for a minute or two. Add coarsely chopped celery, bay
leaves, garlic, thyme, basil, rosemary (if desired), the stock and
the wine. Then add enough tomato puree to bring the level of the
liquid even with the top of the shanks (at the side. You do not
want any liquid to cover the TOP of the shanks and seep into the
marrow.)

Leaving the pot uncovered, bring to the simmering point. Cover
pot and place in 300 degree oven. Let it braise for about 4 hours.
Correct seasonings, adding salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with
mix of fresh parsley and celery leaves 10 minutes before serving,
and for a really distinctive flavor and appearance, sprinkle on
just a tiny bit of orange zest before placing it on the table.

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