Follow/Be a Fan

Follow

Honeymoon Ravioli

Nutella Bread for Dessert or for Breakfast!

 

Learn to Make Fresh Pasta (with a video!)

Easy Italian Pulled Pork

I love to sew - come on over and see what I'm making!

Make Homemade Limoncello

 

Harvest Grape Bread

Tips for Homemade Marinara Sauce

Breakfast Fruit Walkaway is a family favorite

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Love knitting? Come read my knitting blog, Italian Dish Knits.

A Delicious Vegetarian Dish: Pasta alla Norma

Eating Our Way Through the Amalfi Coast

Make Whipped Cream Firm

My Favorite Chocolate Cake Recipe

SUBSCRIBE for free and never miss a post:

 

 

or Use Key Words to Search this Site

Lemon Cake from Capri

Cacio e Pepe

Eggplant Lasagna

 Thanks, Mom!

 

Learn to Make Arancini

 

Bucatini all' Amatraciana

Learn How to Make Artisan Bread with no Kneading for Pennies

 

Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits Require No Baking

Make Pie Dough in 60 Seconds!

Make Your Own Vanilla Extract

 

Spicy Bucatini all'Amatriciana - a Roman Classic

My Mom's Pork Chops

Chocolate Panna Cotta

 


My Five Inexpensive Kitchen Essentials

Beet Ravioli with Goat Cheese

Monday
Apr162018

Pork Osso Buco with Gremolata

 

One of the most satisfying dishes to eat is Osso Buco.  It is traditionally made with veal shanks but this version with pork is equally delicious and as a bonus, pork is inexpensive. The shanks contain a large bone in the middle of the meat, adding lots of flavor to this dish. Even if you are a new cook, this dish is super easy to prepare and I guarantee lots of happy diners. 

Osso buco is a dish that needs to cook for about 2½ hours, so plan accordingly. The prep is very easy - the meat is seared, removed from the pot and then a soffritto, a mixture of vegetables, is cooked.  Then all the other ingredients are added and the meat is returned to the pot, covered and cooked in the oven, low and slow. What results is an incredibly delicious sauce with meat that is just falling off the bone. Traditionally, it is served with Risotto Milanese, a beautiful golden risotto dish flavored with saffron.  You can also serve it with pasta or polenta.

 

The shanks should be pretty thick - I like ones that about two inches thick.  When you buy them, they will very likely come with the skin on over the layer of fat. Many people leave this skin on and you can certainly do that. However, I don't like it and I cut it off before I cook the shanks. It's easy to do with a very sharp knife. If you cut the skin off, you will now need to tie the shanks with twine to keep the meat from falling off the bone.  This step is not necessary, but just nice when serving the shanks because it keeps them from falling apart and makes them nice to serve a whole shank on a plate.

Most recipes call for dredging the pork in flour, but I do not do that.  I feel that the flour tends to burn a little in the searing process and I would rather just have a nice rich fond form on the bottom of the pot from the meat. 

 

There is a version which leaves out the tomato altogether.  It's delicious and pairs very well with the risotto and the gremolata. It's essentially the same recipe, just omitting the tomato. A good reason to cook the dish twice!

The finished dish is sprinkled with gremolata, a zingy mixture of raw parsley, garlic and lemon zest that is delicious.  Serve extra on the side so your diners can add more as they eat their osso buco.


Enjoy!
Elaine

Pork Osso Buco with Gremolata

for a printable recipe, click here

you will need kitchen twine for this recipe

serves 4

5 pork shanks, about 4 pounds (about 3 - 3½ pounds after skin is removed)
salt and pepper
4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup finely chopped onion
½ cup finely chopped celery
½ cup finely chopped carrot
3 garlic cloves, minced or grated
1 cup dry white wine
1 or 2 cups chicken stock
1 28-ounce can whole or pureed San Marzano tomatoes
2 Tablespoons fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
1 lemon, zested

 

Gremolata:

¼ cup packed finely chopped flat leaf Italian parsley
1 lemon, zested
3 garlic cloves, minced or grated

 


I like to trim the skin off the shank and then wrap twine around it,
securing the meat to the bone.

 

I like to remove the skin from the pork shanks. This is entirely personal preference and you can keep it on if you want.  The pork has plenty of fat, but I also trim any real big pieces of fat from the outside of the shanks.  I make sure not to trim all the fat off, though.  Take the kitchen twine and tie it around each shank, securing the meat to the bone.

Preheat oven to 325°F. 

Season the pork shanks on both sides with the salt and pepper.  Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium high heat (I like to use my Le Creuset Bouillabaisse Pot). Place the shanks in the pot and sear each side for about 3 -4 minutes, creating a nice crust. Work in two batches because the shanks most likely are not going to fit in the pot all at once for the searing process.  Remove the shanks from the pot to a plate.  Do not wipe out pot. Lower the heat to medium. 

Add the other 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pot.  Add the chopped vegetables to the pot, including the garlic. Saute for about 6 - 7 minutes, until the vegetables soften.  Raise the heat a little and add the white wine and cook for about another 3 minutes.  Add one cup of the chicken stock and the tomatoes - if you are using whole tomatoes, just crush them with your hands as you put them in the pot.  Add the thyme, bay leaves, tomato paste and lemon zest.  Cook for a few minutes, stirring, to blend the tomato paste.  Return the shanks to the pot and nearly submerge them in the sauce. Add another cup of stock if you need to. Cover with a tight fitting lid, place in the oven and cook for about 2½ hours.

Meanwhile, make the gremolata by mixing the finely chopped parsley with the lemon zest and minced garlic.

Check the shanks - they should be tender.  Remove them to a serving platter and cut off the string.  Spoon some sauce over the shanks and serve the rest on the side. Sprinkle the pork with some gremolata. Serve the pork with Saffron Risotto, polenta or pasta.

 

 

Monday
Feb122018

Pizza Making Class March 4th, 2018

 

If you live in the Mid Michign area, I am having a Pizza Making Class on 

 Sunday, March 4th, 2018.  

1:00 - 4:00 p.m.

The class is now SOLD OUT


Come join the fun and learn how to make homemade pizza!

You will learn how to make easy homemade pizza dough,
the best flour to use and the secrets to making terrific
Neapolitan style pizza. We will also make six different kinds
of pizzas, which we will enjoy that afternoon. 

You will also make your own homemade dough
and get to take it home.

Space is limited. 

E-mail me for details on how to reserve your space.

elainemccardel@mac.com


Monday
Jan152018

Pasta with 'Nduja, Kale and Toasted Breadcrumbs


  

Do you know about 'nduja?  If not, keep reading because this special Italian spread has become very popular and with good reason - it makes so many dishes even better.  'Nduja (pronounced "en-DOO-ya") originates out of Calabria, that region in Italy where all things spicy are loved. It is a sort of spreadable paste made out of pork, Calabrian peppers and various spices. You can spread it on bread or add it to sauces.  It adds not only a spicy kick but a terrific layer of flavor that is absolutely delicious. Once you have it in your fridge, you'll be adding it to all kinds of things. We made homemade pizza recently and I made myself a pizza of thinly sliced zucchini, red onion, grated pecorino and then put little dollops of 'nduja on top. It was terrific. My favorite thing is to add it into this pasta sauce recipe.  We love it.

Click to read more ...