Osso Buco with Saffron Risotto and Ginger Gremolata Recipe


Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Serves: 4 to 6
Prep time: 45 minutes
Total time: 4 hours


for the lamb shanks:
4 osso buco-cut lamb shanks (about 3 ¼ pounds|1 ½ kg)
3 tablespoons rose harissa
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced 
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 medium yellow onion, diced 
1 rib celery, diced 
½ cup|125 ml red wine
1 (15-ounce|425-gram) can whole tomatoes, milled  
4 cups|1 liter chicken or veal stock, plus more if needed

for the saffron risotto:
8 cups|2 liters chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ medium yellow onion, finely diced
1 cup|200 grams arborio rice
1 cup|250 ml white wine
1 tablespoon crushed saffron threads
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
¼ cup|25 grams grated Parmigiano Reggiano, plus shavings for garnish (optional)

for the ginger gremolata:
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced shallot
¼ cup|60 ml rice wine vinegar
kosher salt, to taste
½ cup|125 ml olive oil
2 tablespoons minced mint
2 tablespoons minced parsley
2 tablespoons minced Thai basil


  1. Marinate the lamb: In a large bowl, combine the lamb with the harissa and rosemary. Let sit, covered, for 1 to 2 hours at room temperature. 
  2. Heat the oven to 425°F. Season with the lamb all over with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add the garlic and cook until lightly toasted and fragrant, about 1 minute, then add the carrot, onion, and celery and cook until golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the red wine and reduce slightly, then add the stock and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Nestle in the lamb, bone-side up, cover, and place in the oven. Cook for 1 ½ hours, checking halfway through to see how the stock is looking; if it needs more, add another 1 cup|250 ml to 2 cups|500 ml. Continue cooking until the lamb is very tender, about 1 ½ hours longer. Keep warm.
  3. Make the risotto: Bring stock to a low simmer in a medium pot. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and a pinch of salt. Sauté until rice is translucent, 1 to 2 minutes. Add wine and saffron; bring to a simmer, stirring, until rice has absorbed most of the wine, about 4 minutes. Add 2 ladles of stock to rice; simmer, stirring, until rice has absorbed most of the stock. Continue adding stock, allowing rice to absorb it before adding the next ladleful. Cook until rice is al dente and mixture is a little loose, about 20 minutes. Stir in butter and season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the grated cheese. Cover and let sit for 2 minutes. 
  4. Make the gremolata: In a medium bowl, mix ginger and shallots with the vinegar and salt to mellow the flavors for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and mix together until evenly incorporated. Season to taste.
  5. To serve, divide the risotto among four bowls. Top each with some lamb and the jus, then the gremolata. 

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