An Italian winter classic

An Italian winter classic

Winter has officially arrived and the hearty and easy to prepare Italian favourite, Osso Buco, is one of the season’s best dishes. GemLife chef Matt Conquest shares his favourite take on this classic dish, perfect for those looking for a warming meal on a cold winter’s night.

Matt’s Osso Buco | SERVES 4

Osso buco is a beautiful, simple Italian classic. Tender fall-off-the-bone beef, served with smooth polenta with fresh and zesty gremolata, really brings this dish to life. This recipe is perfect for braising in your Smeg oven. The beef can be substituted with lamb shanks if preferred.


1 tablespoon olive oil
1.4kg beef osso buco or 1kg gravy beef, sliced
1 onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery, finely chopped
1 tomato, skinned and diced
1 small bunch thyme
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
100ml white wine
500ml beef stock
Sea salt & cracked black pepper
Parmesan polenta
500ml (2 cups) milk
½ cup instant fine polenta
50g finely grated parmesan
50g butter
3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
1 lemon, zested
1 garlic clove finely grated


  1. Set Smeg oven to fan-forced and pre-heat to 180?C.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large, ovenproof baking pot over high heat. Add beef and cook until brown on all sides.
  3. Add onion, carrot, celery, tomato, thyme, and garlic and cook for a few minutes until the vegetables soften. Add wine, bring to the boil and simmer for a few minutes until reduced by half. Add stock, season to taste with salt and pepper, return to the boil, cover, and place in your oven.
  4. Cook for 1 hour 30 minutes, remove lid, and cook for a further 15 minutes until the beef is very tender. For a thicker sauce, remove meat from the baking dish and set aside. Place baking dish on the cooktop and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes until reduced. Return meat to sauce.
  5. Polenta: Bring milk to a simmer in a medium saucepan. Add polenta slowly, whisking until smooth. Continue to cook for 5 minutes until smooth, stirring frequently. Stir through cheese and butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Gremolata: Combine all ingredients.
  7. Serve polenta topped with beef, then sprinkle with gremolata.
  8. Serve with crusty baked bread.


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