I had the great pleasure of acting as witness to the nuptials of some very dear friends yesterday afternoon, an intimate affair at their home overlooking Casco Bay.
Somebody (I won't say who) decided that it might be swell if I prepared two of the five courses served. One was a pasta (of course), the other these veal shanks.
It's a really simple dish to prepare.
Salt the shanks well on all sides — and I do mean well. This is no time to be shy. Under-salting at this stage will substantially diminish the flavor of the meat.
In a Dutch oven brown the shanks in hot olive oil, then remove and set aside.
Add lots of leeks and plenty of garlic to the oil, lightly brown, and add some white wine. I also used several anchovy fillets, but you don't have to if you don't want to. You can also add carrots and celery if you like.
Place the shanks back into the pot and add enough chicken stock to nearly cover them. Also add plenty of herbs (there's rosemary, thyme, and marjoram here, and I tied them together with string so that they could be removed later on). Cover and place into a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes, then lower the heat to 325-350 for another 2 hours.
With a fork check to see that the meat is super tender. Dishes like this are always better the next day and so I'd suggest allowing the whole thing to cool and putting the pot in the fridge overnight.
The next day simply reheat, carve up the shanks, and serve them like so. This was the last course of the afternoon, and it seemed to go over pretty well.
Scott Tyree & Giovani Twigge, 10-5-13
Except how do you compete with one of these jobs, am I right?
Nice job, gents!