Michael Romano

O R A N G E   F E N N E L   O S S O   B U C O

Yield: Serves 6

  • 4 osso buco (approximately 1 pound each)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • flour for dredging
  • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup sherry vinegar
  • 3 cups veal stock
  • 3 medium fennel bulbs, trimmed to stalk
  • 3 cups peeled sliced carrots
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 orange peeled and cut into segments

A satisfying dish for cooler months, osso buco is a succulent dish whose richness is offset by the refreshing combination of orange, fennel and sherry wine vinegar. Make sure to have tiny spoons on hand to scoop out the marrow. Serve with mashed turnips and precede with an oak leaf, bibb lettuce and gruyere salad.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Season the osso buco with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and dredge them in flour. Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat. Brown the osso buco on all sides, about 15-20 minutes. Transfer the osso buco to a platter and reserve.

Pour all the fat from the pan. Add the vinegar, and with a wooden spoon, scrape up any brown bits adhering to the pan. Cook over high heat until the vinegar is reduced by half. Add the veal stock to the pan and bring to a simmer. Season with the remaining salt and pepper.

Return the osso buco to the pan. Cover and braise in the oven for 1 hour.

Split the fennel in half lengthwise leaving the core intact. Slice each half lengthwise into 1/2-inch pieces.

Uncover the osso buco and add the fennel, carrots and orange juice. Raise the oven temperature to 400 degrees and cook uncovered an additional 45-50 minutes, basting occasionally. The meat should be fork-tender and the vegetables completely cooked.

Remove the pan from the oven. Transfer the osso buco to a serving platter and keep warm. Skim the fat from the cooking liquid with a bulb-baster or ladle, and cook over high heat to thicken slightly, 4-5 minutes. Stir in orange segments, ladle the sauce and vegetables over the meat and serve.


A soft, grapey merlot, whether from California,
Bordeaux or Long Island, would be suitable
with the osso buco.

Recipe from The Union Square Cafe Cookbook.
Reproduced by permission from Harper Collins.
Copyright © 1994 by Danny Meyer and Michael Romano

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