Slow Cooked Osso Buco Stew

- 4 large osso buco, i.e. veal or lamb shanks with bone intact - 2/3 cloves of garlic - 1 large onion - 1 large eggplant (aubergine) - 2/3 zucchini (courgette) - 1 yellow squash - 1 red bell pepper - 3 carrots - 1 tin of whole peeled tomatoes (in winter) or fresh peeled tomatoes (in summer) All of the above vegies should be roughly chopped - 3-4 whole anchovies (if preserved in salt wash in water or vinegar) - spices of choice - a few sage leaves - half a dozen whole black olives, no need to remove pips
This is a SSSSLLLOOOWWW comfort dish, great for cold winter nights, with a glass (make it a bottle) of Barolo and your closest companion(s). Again the vegetables should be very roughly chopped, with pieces remaining fairly large. If vegetables are to fine the pieces will be reduced to nothing in the slow cooking process. Serve over carbohydrate of choice. For example, mashed potatoes, polenta, rice or cous cous. 1. In your cooking pot fry floured osso buco on both sides briefly to seal. Remove and set aside. 2. Use a little wine (not a barolo) to deglaze the pot, add onions, garlic and spices of choice. 3. Add in remaining vegetables starting with carrots, peppers and eggplant (as these will take longest) and fry until semi-soft and reduced. 4. Add chopped anchovies. I always like adding anchovies to Mediterranean style cooking. However, don't overdo the anchovies, It should add a little bit of sea breeze saltiness to the dish not a full blown fishy-ness. If you can taste anchovies, you've added too much. 5. Add whole peeled tomatoes, a few sage leaves and whole olives. If tomatoes are tinned, add the juice as well. To peel fresh tomatoes, scour a cross in the bottom and blanch in some boiling water for a minute or so. Roughly break up tomatoes as they cook. 6. Add enough water to cover vegetables. Place osso buco on top of vegetables. Reduce heat to a gentle similar and cover. 7. Check on pot periodically, basically cook until the meat easily comes off the bone if it hasn't already. This will probably take 2 or so hours.