Friday, November 30, 2007

Recipe: Veal Shank Tagliatelle

"Braise till the meat falls off the bone" must be one of my favourite phrases. Between crunchy and soft, I prefer everything soft- this applies to pork floss, cooked vegetable and yes, meat. My parents attribute this to my having been a very lazy child. They still believe I am lazy. (They believe so for various reasons, including, as I understand it, that I am not a medical houseman who sleeps opportunistically in emergency room gurneys, because I don't keep the work hours of a junior lawyer and because I never swam the river between Ipoh and Taiping to get to school everyday)

I digress. I wanted to make a mushroom pasta with the fresh, no, make that frozen, chanterelles that I had ordered online. I tried to look up non-cream based pasta recipes and discovered one by Emeril that used a tomato base, as well as one by Chubby Hubby (but I guess really Tetsuya) that was a beautiful Asian take on mushroom pasta.

For some reason, I really wanted to braise the milk-fed veal shanks though. So I did, using this brilliant recipe below, which is one of the most vaulted recipes online and which can also be used for lamb shanks. My only change to the original recipe is I've added in a healthy tablespoon of tomato paste and an extra can of whole tomatoes (tomatoes only for the second can and always Italian tomatoes yeah).

S. Hodge's Rosemary Braised Lamb/Veal Shanks
6 lamb shanks, browned then sprinkled with pepper and salt
2 chopped onions
3 large carrots, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
10 cloves of garlic, minced,
2 Tbsp of olive oil or truffle oil
5 teaspoons of chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons of chopped fresh thyme
Saute vegetables and herbs then throw into the pot with the shanks
3/4 of a 750ml bottle of red wine
1 can chicken broth
1 can beef broth
2 cans whole peeled tomatoes (1 can added without the juice)
1 hefty Tablespoon of tomato paste
Add the remaining ingredients and simmer on low flame for 2.5 hours or till meat is tender or falling off the bone. If you wish, you can remove the shanks and reserve the juices till thickened.

I simmered the mixture for 2 hours to get it to soft and yielding meat but still on the bone. I then let it go for another hour to get it still on the bone, but falling off gracefully when prodded. I then sauteed some mixed mushrooms with basil, mixed in the meat sauce and served it over fresh tagliatelle.

It was quite gorgeous, especially served with a handsome bare veal bone. Even my parents, not your biggest Italian food fans, raved about the depth of the taste. My dad said it three times, which is a stretch for him, though admittedly once was to Colin while online. The only pity was Colin's not back yet from school to try it, but I saved 2 veal shanks for a dinner when he is.

No comments: