For the past 6 months, I’ve had one of my cousins from Norway and his wife and son living here in the SF Bay Area, and we’ve had several enjoyable outings and evenings together. Mads, my cousin, is quite a chef as well, so we share a love of food, cooking and wine along with a common Nordic heritage. I hate to see the three of them head back to Norway – we’ll miss them greatly – but we did have a wonderful going away dinner that Mads whipped up for us. As he was putting final touches on the dish, he asked if I have made Osso Bucco, to which I said “Of course!”. Mads then mentioned that the dish he’d prepared was made with lamb shanks, and he calls it “Oslo Bucco”. Made us all laugh, but I can tell you, it’s a winning recipe. Here it is, straight from my cousin’s hand…
This is a Norwegian edition of the famous Italian classic. The recipe is stolen with pride from the rock n’ roll gourmet restaurant in Oslo called Palace Grill & Bar.
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2.5 pounds of lamb shanks cut in equally large pieces, rolled in all purpose flour, salt and pepper, then tied with kitchen twine
2 carrots diced
3 celery stalks diced
1 fennel bulb diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
8 stalks of rosmary
2 Bay leaves
2 tablespoons of crushed fennel seeds
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1.5 cups of hearty red wine (Ravenswood Zinfandel is great)
3 cups of lamb stock (substitute beef stock if you can’t find lamb)
1 can (28 oz) of peeled tomatoes
Zest of one large lemon
2 cloves of garlic; crushed
2 tablespoons of finely chopped parsley
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1. Pre-heat your oven to 325 degrees.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large casserole or oven-proof pot with a lid.
3. Brown the meat on all sides and then put aside on a plate.
4. Then fry onion, carrots, celery and fennel in the same pan until golden. Stir constantly.
5. Add garlic, rosmary, fennel seeds and bay leaves, stir for a couple of minutes before you add the tomato paste. Stir it together so you get a nice red mixture. Stir in the canned tomatoes and their juice, breaking apart the tomatoes into pieces.
6. Then put the meat back in the pan, in one layer. Pour red wine and stock over, until it almost covers everything. Bring to a boil and cover with a lid.
7. Place the pan in the oven and braise for 1.5- 2 hours (until meat is tender and loosens from the bones. Also remember to cut and remove thread before serving).
Serve with either polenta or risotto, both accompanied with Gremolata and a full bodied bottle of red wine of your liking.
Mads Bruun Hoy