Sunday, October 7, 2012

Roast Bone Marrow with Parsley Salad

Lunch today felt very... virtuous.  Broccoli from the farmers' market with a spiced yogurt sauce?  How much more virtuous could you be?  I mean honestly.  And then dinner was as far from virtuous and healthy as we could get.  Dinner was pure gluttony.  Bone marrow is like the best butter ever created and then some.  It is a heart attack on a plate.  It is delicious.  And I had no idea until today how easy it is to roast bone marrow until tonight.  You just stick it in the oven for 20 minutes and you're done.  Ta-da!  Our average meal is 10 times as complicated.  Even so, this might be the first (and last) time we ever do it in the apartment because I can only get behind so much gluttony at home.  Somehow eating bone marrow at a restaurant feels indulgent (verging on decadent) but not unforgiveably so.  Eating it at home makes me feel like I gained 10 pounds.  Everyone knows that calories you consume at a restaurant don't count!  Regardless of the insane calorie and fat count, it was an excellent experiment.  Not only did I get to cook something new at home, I got to try a Fergus Henderson recipe.  For those of you who aren't quite as obsessed with the world of food and restaurants as we are, Fergus Henderson is the Brittish chef who popularized nose to tail dining.  And according to Bon Appetit, he is the one who helped popularize bone marrow on restaurant menus around the world.  Thanks Fergus!  I don't think that our bone marrow was quite as good as the marrow I have tried at Ouest or Prune, but it was pretty tasty.  I hear that the bone marrow at Blue Ribbon is amazing, but I haven't tried it there yet.  This preparation reminded me very much of the bone marrow at Prune - which is served with a simple lemony, parsley and caper salad, grey sea salt and well-toasted bread spears.  You really need that bright, fresh and acidic parsley salad to cut through the richness of the marrow.  You also need nice crusty, well-toasted bread to spread the roast marrow on.  And then you need to go run 5 miles to work off those calories. 

P.S.  There is a back story to this meal.  We were at the farmers' market this morning when I was on my vegetable kick and I decided that we should get some Boston butt from one of the farms to make Kalua pork.  But they were sold out.  And the people there thought Brady was so cute (and realized how incredibly spoiled he is) that they told us we should buy him some marrow bones as a treat.  Marrow bones you say?  I decided instead to buy myself the marrow bones as a treat.  Hey - I went to spinning today.  I totally deserved this!  I also bought some leaf lard, but I am going to save that for another day.  In case you are as clueless as I initially was, leaf lard is not made from leaves (or any vegetable product).  The word "leaf" refers to the cut of the pig and leaf lard is the "highest grade of lard" and supposedly makes amazing pie crusts.  Who knew?

Recipe after the jump!

Roast Bone Marrow with Parsley Salad
Bon Appetit
June 2011


8 3"-4"-long pieces veal marrow bones
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
2 small shallots, thinly sliced (about 1/3 cup)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon drained capers
Coarse gray sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 1/2"-thick slices rustic white bread, toasted
special equipment 

4 long, thin spoons (we just used bread knives)

Preheat oven to 450°. Place bones, wider cut side down, in an ovenproof skillet or roasting pan. Roast bones until marrow is soft and begins to separate from bone but before it begins to melt, 15-20 minutes, depending on thickness of bones.


Meanwhile, toss parsley, shallots, oil, lemon juice, and capers in a medium bowl to coat. Season salad to taste with gray sea salt and pepper.

Divide marrow bones and salad among plates. Serve with toast and gray sea salt. Using a long, thin spoon, scoop marrow onto toast, top with salad, and garnish with a pinch or two of salt.

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