I have a few favourite chefs that inspire me but none more so than Valli Little of Delicious fame. I have all of her cookbooks and they are a constant source of inspiration to me. I like to think of myself as a bit of a Valli Little because our cooking styles are so similar, however, Delicious magazine is yet to knock on my door (there is always hope). Whenever I cook one of Valli’s dishes, I try to tweak them slightly, not because hers aren’t good enough but because I feel I should attempt to make them differ slightly as I am posting them on my own website. This dish was a stand out. An old Italian classic given an Asian make over and a darn good one at that!
You could do this in the slow cooker. Brown the meat first, cover with a piece of baking paper (this helps to keep the moisture in) and cook on low for 6 hours.
Prep time: 25 Minutes Cooking time: 2.5 Hours $$ Medium Budget
Oil for frying (peanut, rice bran, sunflower)
4 large Osso Buco
1/4 cup of plain flour
1tsp of Chinese 5 Spice
1/2 tsp of salt
1 large brown onion, halved and sliced top to bottom
3cm piece of ginger, grated
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 long red chilli, finely sliced (seeds removed for less heat)
3 strips of orange rind, finely julienned
3 star anise
1 cinnamon quill
1 tbs of brown sugar
1/2 cup of soy sauce
1 tbs of char sui sauce
1 tbs of tomato paste
750ml of beef stock
Juice of 1/2 a lime
Steamed rice to serve
For the Topper:
1 lebanese cucumber, peeled into thin strips, seeds discarded
2 spring onions, sliced into 4cm batons and finely julienned
1 cup of coriander leaves
1/2 cup of mint leaves
1/2 cup of Thai basil (optional but yum)
Juice of 1/2 a lime
Pre heat the oven to 170°C.
Combine the flour, salt and Chinese 5 spice on a flat plate and coat the beef on both sides (and the edges), shaking off any excess and reserving the leftover flour.
Heat a large casserole and add the oil. Fry the beef on both sides until golden and set aside. In the same pan, add a little more oil if necessary and lightly fry the onion until soft. Add the ginger, garlic and chilli and fry for a minute or two until aromatic. Add the orange rind, star anise, cinnamon stick, sugar, soy, char sui sauce, tomato paste, stock and reserved flour to the pan and stir to combine. Return the meat to the pan and spoon over the sauce, making sure the meat is covered. Bring to a simmer and tear off a sheet of baking paper and lay it over the mixture, tucking the sides in so it is nice and snug. This helps to keep the moisture in. Bake it in the oven for approximately 2 hours, turning the meat periodically until it is falling off the bone.
In a bowl, combine the cucumber strips, spring onion, chilli and herbs and cover with cold water and place in the fridge so the mixture is nice and crunchy. Drain the water just before serving and squeeze over the lime juice.
To serve, divide rice between serving bowls and top with the Osso Bucco. Spoon over the sauce and top with a generous pile of the salad topper.
Left over Thai Basil? You may want to cook this…….