Curry Osso Buco with Roasted Cauliflower & Broccoli, garnished with Crunchy Snow Peas

If you hadn’t already noticed, I am quite the carnivore.  I loveeee meat, no matter the species.

Slow-braised meat on the bone is one of my favorite ways to eat it (next to eating it raw).  When I walked into the butcher’s yesterday afternoon, I was planning on picking up a couple of lamb shanks to braise in curry and served with roasted cauliflower.  Unfortunately, they were out of lamb shanks, but I was stuck on my original plan.

As an alternative, I asked for two veal shanks.  Osso Buco is like my favourite home-style meal.  It is the epitome of old school, traditional home cooking.  And this Indian twist to the original was actually really great.

Begin by heating up a saute pan (with high edges) and seasoning the meat.  Sear the shanks until they have a nice golden brown exterior.  In the meantime, dice one medium-sized onion, a carrot, and a stalk of celery.  Take the shanks out of the pan once seared and add the onions.  Turn the heat to medium to medium-low and allow the onions to sweat, let out some of their moisture, and deglaze the pan.  Once the onions have become translucent, add the diced celery and carrots and sweat with some butter.  Crush a couple cloves of garlic and add those as well.

Buy a curry paste from your local grocery store – whether it be mild of hot (i suggest a hot curry paste because the coconut milk in this particular recipe will cut the heat).  Add about two tablespoon of the curry paste, along with some curry powder, into the pan with the mirepoix.  Cook for a couple minutes before adding the coconut milk (1 can, from your local grocery store) plsu one cup of chicken or veal stock.  Place the veal shanks back into the pan, add a bay leaf or two, some freshly grated ginger, and salt & pepper.  Cover the braising pan and turn heat to low.  Slowly simmer on low, stirring every once in a while, for about 2 hours, or until the meat is fall-off-the-bone tender.

To roast the cauliflower and broccoli, heat your oven to 425.  Drizzle the veg in a mix of olive oil and curry paste, and season with salt and pepper.  Throw in some garlic cloves, fresh thyme if you have it, and a couple bay leaves.  Roast until really nice and crispy and caramelized on the outside.  There is nothing better than a crispy, caramelized bite of cauliflower (trust me).

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Roasted Beet, Asparagus, & Cremini Mushroom Salad with Toasted Walnuts & Crumbled Goat Cheese

Although I’m not crazy about salads, generally preferring rich, warm, hearty meals for dinner, I sometimes crave a fresh tasting, healthy meal.  Having hated beets as a child, I have certainly grown into their earthy sweetness.  I was craving a dish that featured beets as the star…

I had some goat cheese laying around that was in need of being used, and the sharp, slightly sour, creaminess of the cheese is such a nice companion for beets.  I washed and wrapped a couple of beets in tin foil before roasting them in a 400 degree oven.  Because beets vary in size, their cooking time also varies.  I always suggest that the best way to know if something is ready/cooked through is to touch and taste it (whether you’re talking about vegetables or meats or starches).  In the case of roasting beets, you’re looking for them to be somewhat soft to the touch, with the skin peeling off easily.  This can take longer than you might expect (for me it took almost an hour and a half!).

I decided to add asparagus and mushrooms both for their strong, earthy flavours and for their colourful appearance next to the bright purple beets.  Once the beets were finished roasting, I upped the oven temperature to 425 degrees.  I lay out the asparagus on a baking sheet, drizzled the spears in olive oil and seasoned with kosher salt and pepper.  I did the same with the mushrooms, but on a different baking sheet.  I put them both in the oven and roasted them for 15-20 minutes, or until the asparagus was slightly aldente, and the mushrooms were soft and juicy.

Toasted walnuts were a perfect addition.  I simply coated them in olive oil, seasoned with salt, and roasted in the oven on a baking sheet for 5-10 minutes, checking and tossing constantly, until they were browned on all sides.

Once the veg had cooled, and I’d peeled the beets, I chopped everything and started building my salad.  I had so much fun photographing this meal because of the wonderful colours.

I didn’t have any basil at the time, but if I had, I would have made a nice Basil Oil with olive oil and salt & pepper.  Instead, I just used a simple balsamic vinaigrette that I made with equal parts olive oil and balsamic vinegar, some chopped rosemary, and a touch of dijon and salt & pepper.

Published in: on November 10, 2010 at 3:10 pm  Comments (1)  
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