Practically effortless to make, yet impressive as heck, this braised veal shank dish is perfect for weekend entertaining. Slide it in the oven, gather some friends, and prepare yourself for an endless stream of compliments.–Angie Zoobkoff
Veal Osso Bucco FAQs
Meaning “bone with a hole,” osso bucco slowly braises inexpensive veal shanks until the meat is tender and falls off the bone. The richness and distinctive flavor of the dish come from the infusion of marrow that melts down and becomes buttery smooth. The dish is usually served with a special spoon for scooping out the marrow as the stew is eaten, use whatever little spoons you have on hand to get all the good stuff.
This braised dish is even better the next day, so it’s convenient to make ahead for entertaining. When it’s done cooking, allow it to cool completely before refrigerating in an airtight container. Before reheating, remove a little of the solidified fat if you prefer. Add the shanks back into the Dutch oven, add a little stock, cover, and gently reheat at 325°F until just heated through, about 30 to 45 minutes. Start checking at 30 minutes. And take care not to reheat any longer than needed.
Veal Osso Bucco
- 4 tablespoons canola oil
- 8 veal shanks, each 1 1/2 to 2 inches (4 to 5 cm) thick
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 medium yellow onions, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) thick slices
- 2 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces
- 10 medium garlic cloves
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 6 to 8 cups store-bought or homemade beef stock
- One (28-ounce) can whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes
- Grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
- Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
- In a large Dutch oven set over high heat, warm 2 tablespoons oil. Arrange the veal shanks on a flat surface, pat them dry, and season them generously on all sides with salt and pepper. Brown the first 4 shanks on all sides in the hot oil, 5 to 6 minutes per side.
- Place the shanks on a baking sheet. Add 2 more tablespoons of oil to the Dutch oven and let the oil heat. Brown the remaining 4 shanks. Don’t rush the browning—it's the most important part of building deep flavor. Move the second batch of shanks to the baking sheet.
- Reduce the heat under the Dutch oven to medium and add the onions, carrots, garlic, thyme sprigs, and wine. Simmer until the wine is reduced by half, 7 to 8 minutes. Return the shanks to the Dutch oven and cover them with 6 cups beef stock, the tomatoes and their juices, and, if needed, a little water to fully cover the veal.
- Bring the liquid to a simmer over medium heat and skim any impurities from the surface. Cover the Dutch oven and place it in the center of the oven. Braise until the shanks are completely tender, 1 1/2 to 2 1/4 hours. If the liquid reduces so that less than half the meat is covered, add 2 cups stock and continue cooking the meat. If after 1 1/2 hours or so the meat isn't completely tender, don’t be afraid to add some water and cook it longer.
- Place the shanks on a platter and season with salt. Simmer the cooking liquid remaining in the Dutch oven over medium heat until slightly reduced, about 10 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings accordingly and stir in the lemon zest and juice and the parsley.
- Pour the sauce over the shanks. Serve immediately.
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Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This veal osso bucco recipe makes a simple, classic dish. While it doesn’t have a huge list of ingredients, it does take a long time to cook, so this is a lovely recipe for a Sunday night dinner. It’s simple to make and does its magic in the oven while you do other things. And it has a real wow factor for presentation and taste. Definitely something I plan to make again.
The only veal I was able to get was between 1 and 1 1/4 inches in thickness. Not quite the thickness asked for but would have to do. After 1 hour in the oven, the veal was tender and I added about 1/4 cup more beef stock before cooking for the other 30 minutes. Reducing the liquid in the pan took about 10 minutes further after taking the pan out of the oven. The sauce was nicely thickened and complex in taste. The veal was very tender and very tasty. We served this with a salad and garlic mashed potatoes.
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This veal osso bucco was very tender and the sauce was nice. The meat was done perfectly in 2 hours. I used Chardonnay.
For vegetables on the side, I put 2 cups cabbage, 2 cups cauliflower, and 2 cups carrots into a covered casserole dish, poured 1/2 cup condensed broth over the veggies, and sprinkled it with 1 teaspoon garlic salt and pepper before baking, covered, at 350°F for 1 hour.