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A Tasty Hole

Dig out the treasure with a knife.

Beef osso buco was on special at Nosh this week so I bought a couple of medium sized pieces before I knew exactly what to do with them. Like many odd ball cuts, osso buco can refer to both the cut and the dish.

Meaning “bone with a hole”, osso buco is traditionally a braised meat and vegetable dish and there were many variations to be found online. It is pronounced exactly the way it is spelled and I admit, I bought this cut for the marrow. I’ve never cooked marrow before, but if you enjoy eating savoury, rich, fatty, buttery food then you will probably like marrow.

I read a few recipes and articles and then did my own interpretation of osso buco. Chinese celery, soy sauce, avocado oil…I can vouch for it’s inauthenticity.

Onions, carrots and celery are referred to as mirepoix (pronounced Mer-pwa) in French cooking or “the holy trinity” in Creole. Both parsley and celery were on my shopping list but when I saw chinese celery which looked like a cross between parsley and celery, I substituted both regular celery and italian parsley for the foreigner.

You’ll need a heavy pot that has a lid for this a braise recipe.

A Slightly Chinese Osso Buco


2 osso buco (about 400 grams each)
1 glass of red wine
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 carrots
1 onion
1 bunch chinese celery
4 tablespoons extra virgin avocado oil
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon truffle salt
2 cups chicken or veal stock
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika


  1.  Generously season the meat with salt and dust with flour.
  2.  Heat 2 tablespoons of oil and carefully add the meat.
  3.  Brown for several minutes on both sides.
  4.  Add soy sauce, tomato paste, red wine and stock.
  5.  Cover and cook on very low heat for 1-2 hours, turning meat over once. At this stage I took the pot off heat and cooled it and put it in the fridge overnight to let the flavours develop overnight. But you can continue if you prefer.
  6.  Peel carrots and onion and cut into bite sized pieces. Wash and finely chop the stalks of the chinese celery. Reserve the leafy part. In a pan, brown the stalks, carrots and onion in a little avocado oil. Add to the braising pot.
  7.  Cover and continue cooking for another hour or so.
  8.  Uncover, stir and turn up the heat. Continue cooking with lid off to let the sauce reduce down. Taste, season with salt and/or pepper, taste.
  9.  Finely chop the leafy part of the celery and stir through just before plating up.

Serve with mashed potatoes or on top of rice.

This entry was posted in: Eats
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I am Genie, a graphic designer/photographer obsessed with food and bunnies. I live in Whanganui, New Zealand with my husband, The Koala and our two rabbits, Kobe and Bento. I write about my hedonistic ways and I love the mantra "Eat well, travel often". I prefer not to write about myself in third person.

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