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Osso Buco with Basil Gremolata

Recipe Date:
July 17, 2014
Serving Size:
Active Time:
Imperial (US)


2 Tbl Montemaggiore extra virgin olive oil
Six 2-inch thick lamb shanks (¾–1 lb each), tied with kitchen twine
2 carrots, cut into ½ inch dice
1 onion, cut into ½ inch dice
1 stick celery, cut into ½ inch dice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ cups Montemaggiore Syrah
1 ½ cups lamb, beef, or chicken stock
1 cup drained canned tomatoes, chopped
2-3 strips lemon peel
1 bay leaf
1 tsp fresh chopped rosemary
1 tsp fresh chopped thyme
2 Tbl fresh chopped basil
2 tsp chopped lemon zest
½ tsp chopped garlic
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Directions for the Lamb

  • Preheat the oven to 325. In a large oven-safe skillet with lid or dutch oven, heat olive oil over moderate heat. Season lamb shanks with salt and pepper, and cook until browned, about 8 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate,
  • Add carrots, onion, celery, and garlic to the pan. Reduce heat down to moderately low, cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often until vegetables are soft. Add the wine, stock, and tomatoes and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits. Add the lemon peel, bay leaf, rosemary, thyme. Nestle the lamb shanks into the vegetables, and add any accumulated juices.
  • Cover the pot and place in center of oven. Braise for about 1 hour. Turn the shanks, cover and cook for about 1 more hour until the meat is very tender.
  • Remove the lamb and cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Degrease the sauce and discard bay leaf and lemon peel. Reduce the sauce over high heat until you have about 2 cups. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Directions for the Gremolata

  • Blend together the basil, lemon zest, garlic, pepper, and a pinch of salt in food processor. Place lamb in deep serving dish with a bit of sauce on top. Sprinkle with gremolata. Put extra sauce in a gravy boat. Serve with risotto, orzo, polenta, or mashed potatoes. Serves 6. Ciolino Family recipe.

Wine Pairing:  Nobile and Reserve. Lamb naturally goes well with any syrah-based wine given the savory, meaty, gamey flavors of both. Of course, this dish will naturally match the red wine with which it is made.