This recipe is based on Adrian Richardson’s version which comes from his “Nonna Yole”. The intensity of flavour comes from the addition of olives capers and anchovies with lots of crushed garlic – a delightful combination which really gives the veal sauce a fabulous kick.

I prefer veal shin but if you can’t get hold of it, beef osso bucco is fine. Ask your butcher to cut 5cm slices from the hind shin where there’s more meat.

Serve with Israeli Couscous which has been tossed with currants, caramelised onions and toasted pine nuts. Or serve on a bed of buttered paparadelle pasta.



  • 2.5kg veal shin cut into 5cm slices crosswise
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 100g butter
  • 6 anchovies
  • 2 large carrot sticks cut into medium dice
  • 3 sticks celery sliced
  • 2 large brown onion diced
  • 250g pitted Kalamata olives
  • 75g baby capers
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 large head of garlic crushed
  • 1 ½ cups port
  • 1 ½ cups red wine
  • 1 litre tomato passata
  • 2 tabs tomato paste
  • freshly ground black pepper 


  • 1 large garlic clove squashed
  • 1 cup finely chopped parsley
  • Zest of a lemon
  • 1 tabs olive oil.


Preheat the oven to 175 C

Heat the oil in a large heavy based frypan and brown well-seasoned veal pieces all over. Transfer the browned veal to a large casserole dish and keep warm.

Add the butter to the frypan, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pan. When sizzling, add anchovies garlic and onion and saute till the anchovies melt, taking care not to burn the garlic and onion. Add the carrot, celery and bay leaves, sweat until they soften. Season with black pepper. Add the olives, capers, wine and port and cook for another 5 mins. 

Tip contents of the frypan over the meat in the casserole dish and add the tomato paste and passata. Cover and transfer to the oven for 2–2 ½ hours, checking that the bottom of the sauce is not sticking.

Remove casserole from the oven, remove the lid and simmer on the stovetop to thicken the sauce for 20mins.

For the gremolata, rub the squashed garlic clove with the olive oil around the inside of a bowl. Remove the garlic clove and then rub the parsley, zest combination around the bowl. This will give a hint of garlic without overpowering the gremolata.

Serve Osso Bucco over Couscous with a scatter of gremolata and a squeeze of lemon.

Prep Time

30 minutes

Cook Time

3 hours