Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Osso Buco Slow Cooker

Considering how much I love lamb shanks I am surprised it took me this long to cook Osso Buco for the first time. I always use Hugh’s recipe for the shanks (River Cottage’s Citrus Braised Lamb Shanks) so it is a no surprise I am using his Osso Buco Alla Milanese.

You will be using thick slices of beef or veal shins with the shin bone still present. Look at the beautiful rich colour.


The result was tender beef that was falling off the bone and a lovely sauce that was hearty but less fatty than you would get cooking with lamb.

Note: Pop this on early in the day because it might take 6 hours or more on your slow cooker’s medium setting.

You will be:

  1. Preparing everything
  2. Sealing the beef shins
  3. Sweating the vegetables
  4. Slow cooking everything
  5. Serving

You will need:

  • Ingredients:
    • 4 – 6 slices of beef shin with the bone still in the middle (about 1.3kg)
    • enough plain white flour to coat the shins
    • table salt and cracked black peppercorns to taste
    • 50g salted butter
    • A couple of slugs olive oil
    • 2 garlic cloves, diced
    • 2 celery sticks and their leaves, chopped
    • 2 brown onions, chopped
    • 1 carrot, chopped
    • A handful of snow peas, whole
    • 2 cups dry white wine
    • 2 cups stock (I have used homemade Slow Cooker Chicken Stock and Italian Beef Stock: Brodo Di Manzo but use anything you have to hand)
    • A handful of chopped mushrooms (optional)
  •  Equipment:
    • 1 long sharp knife
    • 1 chopping board
    • 1 frypan
    • 1 slow cooker
Preparing everything
  1. While you  let the beef shins come to room temperature prepare the:
    • 2 garlic cloves, diced
    • 2 celery sticks chopped
    • 2 brown onions, chopped
    • 1 carrot, chopped
    • a handful of snow peas, whole
  2. Dry the beef shin slices with paper towel, season with salt and pepper and then dust them in the flour.



Sealing the beef shins
  1. Turn your slow cooker on to high, add a slug of olive oil and cover.
  2. Melt the 50g of salted butter in a frypan and then add a good slug of olive oil.
  3. Brown both sides of the shins (if they start to curl on you during cooking, clip the outer ring of connective tissue with kitchen shears).
  4. Add them to the slow cooker.



Sweating the vegetables
  1. Add the 2 cups white wine and the 2 cups of stock to the same frypan and bring to a gentle boil.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and then add the vegetables.
  3. Cook until they soften and then add everything to the slow cooker.
Slow cooking everything

Turn the slow cooker down to medium or low and cover. Mine took 6 hours before the beef was ready.


Serve on a bed of basmati rice with extra vegetables and some of Hugh’s gremolata.




Related Links:
  • see all recipes using beef here
  • see all slow cooker dishes here
  • see more River Cottage posts here

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