Jan 22, 2012

osso buco

Part of the goal of this blog is to reinvent 'traditional' recipes, renew conventional ideas and let people see that the omnivore rut that they have been stuck in is easy to get out of.

This traditional Milanese recipe of braised veal shanks, Osso Buco, is literally translated to mean 'Bone with a Hole." Not really sure how accurate the name is in this vegan context, but for the sake of tradition we'll keep it as is. 

This is what I mean about altering conventional thinking; normally 'Bone with a Hole' has no right to be in cooking distance of a vegan kitchen, but since the recipe itself means both the dish and the cut of animal, I couldn't really call it "Seitan Buco" or "Osso Seitan," could I? Maybe "Seitan Osso Buco," but I try to keep as close to the original name as possible, for simplicity sake. It is difficult to know what someone will name a veganized version of a dish - it is much easier to search for the omni version of a name (and hence the one most recognized) than to try to guess what an author chooses to call something. As much as I would like to rename dishes to reflect a more vegan world, I try to stay as true to the original as possible.

I made "veal" seitan cutlets, thick-cut, and braised them with carrots, celery, onion, herbs and wine. This dish is usually served over a risotto, but Catt has been asking for mashed potatoes. She must be getting kick-backs from the potato board, and since I knew this dish would have some great sauce for the requested spuds, mashed it turned out to be. 

It has been a few years since I've made this, but it was just as great as the first time. It is garnished with gremolata, a condiment of parsley, garlic and lemon zest. The garnish gives it a nice punch that cuts through the richness of the sauce and seitan. I wouldn't skip it if I were you.

Cost Breakdown

seitan: $3
carrot, celery, onion, garlic: $2
spices, herbs, tomato paste, wine, broth: $3
potatoes: $3
gremolata: $2
Total to make 6 servings:


  1. Catt is a girl after my own heart. She made the right choice. That dish looks incredible.

  2. After drooling over the photo for so long; I finally made this, using the seitan coriander cutlets from Vegan Eats World. One of the best meals I've ever eaten. The sauce is wonderful.

    I tried a veal chop once, and from what I remember it was more tender and more mildly flavored than beef and I didn't particularly care for it. Years later, a trusted friend talked me into getting the osso buco at a restaurant. I liked the dish as a whole and ended up getting it again after that; but I still wasn't sold on veal.

    I am glad to have your osso buco recipe and I'm sure I'll be making it often. I hope the veal seitan recipe will be in your cookbook. Even though I didn't care for the meat version, I do like the idea of having more flavor options beyond chicken style and beef style seitan.

    1. Thank you, Charj! I'm so glad you liked it! The veal seitan is not in the book since so many people are against gluten. But I tell you what! This seitan completely fell off my radar - I guess I was too busy. I'm going to review it and I'll get it to a spot where I think it can be posted. Now I just have to find the notebook it's in :)

    2. Having the seitan recipe too would be great. I enjoyed my osso buco leftovers, and I'm looking forward to making the dish again. Don't know if I'll make it again before the summer heat keeps me out of the kitchen. I used bouillon cubes last time and I'm sure good homemade broth would take the dish to another level. I'll be trying stock recipes and once I find one or two that really shine, I be ready to make the osso buco again.

  3. My pleasure. Thank you for visiting.


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