1 New Recipe a Week: Week 1

This week I tried two new recipes!  The first was really practice.  After I posted the prelude to this effort (6/15/11), I was beginning to doubt my culinary ability and commitment to try something different. So I looked for something that seemed relatively easy – Thai Peanut Sauce.  Then, for my real new recipe, I tried Osso Bucco. 

THAI PEANUT SAUCE

I found this recipe at shesimmers.com/2009/03/how-to-make-thai-peanut-sauce-my-moms.html.  What attracted me to this recipe was the author’s claim that it was easy.  And it was!  I just needed coconut milk, unsweetened natural peanut butter, Thai red curry sauce, white vinegar, sugar salt and water.  Heat this all in one pot for a few minutes, and it’s ready!

I used this as a dipping sauce for grilled chicken, zucchini and sugar snap peas, and served it with basmati rice.  The leftover sauce is refrigerated for a side dish later this week.

OSSO BUCCO

Somewhat emboldened, I set out to make something that we might order in a restaurant because we’d never have it at home.  This was to be a Father’s Day dinner so I looked for something that Richard might want.  Osso bucco would hopefully satisfy his Italian palate.

I found a recipe at foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/osso-buco-recipe.  This is from Chef Giada De Laurentiis who received an Emmy for Outstanding Lifestyle Host and has become one of Food Network’s most recognizable faces.  I was afraid that I am way out of her league.  I must have read the recipe ten times before I committed to it. 

The Ingredients

I bought about 2 1/2 pounds of veal shank and had to tie a string around each piece to keep the meat on the bone.  I had never done that before and one of the pieces came apart during the cooking process (I really am a cooking neophyte!).

I used rosemary, thyme and a bay leaf from my garden.   I also found some cloves in my cupboard although I can’t remember the last time I used cloves to cook.  To make the bouquet garni, I had to substitute bandage gauze for cheesecloth, which is not something I normally have need for. 

Luckily, the broth, olive oil, tomato paste and flour are standard pantry issues.  And, of course I always have some dry white wine in my fridge.  And, really now, carrots, celery and onions should also be common staples.

The Process

I did everything the recipe called for, including browning the floured meat, cooking the vegetables until transparent, adding the tomato paste and combining all in the pot.  I added the 1/2 cup wine, but at the end of the designated time, I couldn’t figure out if the liquid decreased by half.  Nevertheless, I added the two cups of chicken broth and started the simmering process.

For the next 1.5 hours, I turned the meat and checked the liquid level every 15 minutes.  I never added the third cup of broth that might be needed in case the liquid too low.  Towards the end of the simmering process, I prepared the mashed potatoes.

The Result

About two hours after I put on my apron and got serious about cooking, I was ready to serve.  I sprinkled parsley from my garden and lemon zest over everything and VOILA!

My first osso bucco!

P.S. There were no leftovers . . .

4 thoughts on “1 New Recipe a Week: Week 1

  1. Is the peanut sauce spicy? I’ve always heard it is so I’ve never tried it. *sigh* Even mild taco sauce burns my tongue. I’m such a wimp.

    Oh that entree looks delicious! *applause* You did a great job, you brave woman you! I’d have been intimidated by that Osso Bucco.

  2. The spiciness in the peanut sauce comes from the Red Thai Curry paste. The recipe called for a quarter cup, and I just put in a big dollop (that Texas talk for “some” as my dad would say). So you can make it as mild as you want.

    Regarding the osso bucco, I can’t say it was easy, but it was doable. I was initially intimidated, but after I pored over the instructions, I realized I just had to be diligent and not go off to do something else and forget about the turning. I am the poster child for If-I-can-do-it-so-can-you!.

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