Osso Buco

mmmdelicious -if I do say so myself. This is the ultimate winter dish, packed full of flavour, with sauce just waiting to be mopped up by a soft bread roll. Hope you enjoy, (cause I certainly am!)

Prep time: 1 day – only for the beans because it needs to soak overnight

Cooking time: 2.5 hours

Ingredients

  • 100g dried cannellini beans
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 6 x 200g pieces osso buco (veal shin), you can use beef instead if you want
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 8 stalks flat- leaf parsley, leaves shredded, and stalks reserved
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 lemons zested
  • 400g diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups (750ml) veal stock

Method:

  1. Place beans in large bowl and pro over 250ml cold water. Stand overnight. Drain.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. Place flour in a bowl and season well with salt and pepper. Very lightly coat the veal with this mixture, heat a frying pan with 2 tablespoons oil and fry the veal, so it is sealed.
  3. Place casserole dish over high heat and fry the onion, garlic, carrot, celery and parsley stalks for around 7 minutes or until just soft.
  4. Stir in wine, bay leaf, thyme, tomato paste and half the lemon zest and cook for 5 mins or until liquid is reduced by half. Add tomatoes and cook stirring for 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in stock and bring to the boil, add the beans and cover with lid and transfer to oven stirring occasionally  for 1.5 hours.
  6. Transfer casserole to the stovetop and uncover, cook on low-medium heat for 40 mins or until sauce has thickened and the meat is falling off the bone.
  7. Remove from heat, add the remaining lemon zest and parsley. Serve and mmmenjoy.

top left: sealed osso buco. top right: frying the onions, bottom left: frying vegetables, bottom right: just before stock is added

Fettuccine Carbonara

fettuccine carbonara

I’ve been having an odd day today, I managed to stall twice at this ginormous roundabout -nearly wetting myself in the process! I spilled stock on myself, was making a chocolate tart and the hand mixer head actually broke off and the plastic nearly ended up flicking dad, and I spilled the flour and cocoa powder on myself when I went to bin it. Really, really weird I mean know I’m pretty accident prone but still…….:) anyway at least I had this pasta to make me feel better. I really love Italian, it’s always delicious when done correctly. On any day the creaminess of the sauce and the homemade pasta is sure to make you smile and drool! I just love homemade pasta, the texture beats any store bought prepackaged pasta. If you don’t have a pasta maker don’t fret I don’t have one either – all you need is a rolling pin and knife, and it feels so satisfying to know you’ve made it from beginning to end. Anyway I hope you enjoy here’s the recipe.

Ingredients:

for the pasta

  • 4 eggs
  • 400 g flour
  • approx 100g flour extra to be used intermittently

for the sauce

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 heaped tablespoons plain flour
  • 1/4 cup thickened cream
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 1/3 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 3 rashes of bacon
  • 6 small brown mushrooms
  • salt to taste

Method:

to make the pasta

  1. Pour the flour on to a clean dry surface and make a well.
  2. Add the four eggs into the well and beat the eggs.
  3. Slowly beat in the flour while maintaining the well shape.
  4. When the flour and eggs have been completely combined knead the dough for at least 5mins or until smooth and elastic . Add extra flour if the dough feels too moist. It is done when the dough springs back when you press into it.
  5. Form into a disc shape and lightly flour, cover in cling wrap and allow to rest for 30mins
  6. Divide into four balls and lightly flour a flat surface and the rolling pin. Roll out each piece of the dough folding it in half around 3 times during rolling out (to make it smoother) Roll it out to around 1.5mm thickness throughout (try to make it the same thickness so it cooks evenly)
  7. Cut the pastry into strips of around 1.5cm and lighty flour. If you plan on storing it dry your pasta by hanging it on something (I stacked a drying rack against a plate longwise! But a clothes line works well), making sure the strands don’t touch. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the fridge, or 1 month in the freezer.

To make the rest of the dish

(the sauce is pretty much a béchamel sauce with mushroom and bacon)

  1. slice the mushrooms, and cut the bacon into thin strips (1cm x 2 cm)
  2. cook the bacon and remove from the pan into a bowl, then sauté the mushrooms in the same pan (there is no need to add any extra oil as you can use the grease that came the bacon, however if you do need something, use butter). Remove from the pan into a bowl
  3. Melt the butter in a pot and mix in the flour
  4. Remove from the heat and add the milk and cream while whisking franticly so it combines and there are no lumps
  5. Place on medium heat again and slowly stir with a wooden spoon until it starts to thicken. (At this point you should also put a large pot of water on the stove and bring to the boil for the pasta)
  6. Add the cheese and stir. Add in the mushrooms and bacon and taste to see if anymore salt is needed. Add salt it as required.
  7. place the pasta into the boiling water and add oil and salt so it does not stick. Cook for around 3-5 minutes until al dente (which is when it is still slightly springy). Remove from the hot water and run under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  8. Mix into the sauce so it is just coated (there may possibly be too much pasta so don’t add it all in at once) and enjoy 🙂

top left: dough just before I roll it out, top right: whisking cream and milk with the butter and flour for the sauce, bottom left: drying the pasta, bottom right: cooking the pasta