TODAY Food Editor
In this special weekly feature, “Today” food editor Phil Lempert brings you recipes “stolen” (with permission) from notable restaurants across America. See how much fun you can have (and money you can save) by cooking these dishes at home.
THIS WEEK: Osso Buco with Saffron Couscous and Escarole from The Red Cat in New York City.
Now that we’re deep into the throes of winter, we’ve “stolen” the perfect dish for this time of year. Osso buco is a traditional dish from Piedmont, Italy made with the marrow of a veal shank. The shank is called osso buco which has been translated to mean "bone hole" or "pierced bone." As you can probably guess, the bone marrow is an important part of this dish. Skip it and you won't get the flavor or the richness that this dish is known for. The dish is braised so it'll nicely heat up your room while it's simmering away. Hearty and warming so it's perfect for keeping those winter chills at bay.
About the chef: In 1999, Jimmy Bradley opened a restaurant called The Red Cat in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood. The Red Cat was, and remains, defined by a deceptively simple approach. It is also defined by Bradley’s menu. The chef, who had cooked and eaten in the restaurants of his native New England, as well as throughout the United States and Europe, took his lead from the places to which he had always gravitated himself. “No matter where I’ve lived, worked or traveled, there’s always been a special restaurant, a can-do joint that’s all things to all people,” says Bradley. “They’re gathering places where you can drop in for a drink or a meal at the bar, or sit down in a dining room where you can gather with friends to end the day or start the evening.”
In October 2001, Bradley launched The Harrison — a sister restaurant to The Red Cat, with a slightly more traditional vibe — in Tribeca. Although each project is unique, collectively they reflect Bradley’s innate sense of hospitality, menu design and creativity.
After attending the University of Rhode Island, Bradley worked in some of Philadelphia and Rhode Island’s top kitchens before becoming executive chef of Savoir Fare, a Martha’s Vineyard bistro where he began his trademark style of boldly flavored seasonal food. He made the most of his winter sabbaticals away from the restaurant, broadening his culinary skills and visiting his family’s Piedmont winery to learn about viticulture and experience Italy’s regional cooking.
His first cookbook, "The Red Cat Cookbook," will be published in 2006.
Osso Buco with Saffron Couscous and Escaroleis served at The Red Cat for $28. The recipe is for a restaurant serving size of four.
The Red Cat
227 Tenth Avenue
New York, New York 10011
Want to nominate your favorite restaurant dish for a "Steal This Recipe" feature? Just e-mail Phil at Phil.Lempert@nbc.com (or use the mail box below) with the name of the restaurant, city and state, and the dish you would like to have re-created. Want to know more about Phil and food? Visit his Web site at www.supermarketguru.com.