25 January, 2008
Marrow BonesTags: beef, bones, marrow
Ok, vegetarians, look away.
Marrow bones just might represent the worst food ever in the world of meat when looked at from the high, white towers of veganism. It’s got to be desperation food. Marrow is the jiggling center of roasted cow (or veal) leg bones. The fact that it’s so fatty might just put people off, but really, it’s not any worse than slathering butter on your toast instead. And it is fatty, but it’s got no gristle or structure to it, so unlike the chewy part of fat on that ribeye, the marrow just melts away in your mouth. It’s incredibly rich, too. I couldn’t imagine making a whole meal of this. It’s more of an appetizer or a late-night snack. You might have trouble finding marrow bones in the supermarket. I chanced upon them this morning at Whole Foods. I imagine, if you asked the meat guy, he could get you some.
You’ll want to figure about three bones per person, cut into 2 to 3 inch lengths. Preheat your oven to 450° and stack them up like soldiers in an oven proof skillet. They’ll take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes to cook, depending on how cold they are when you started. After 15 minutes, check on them frequently. You’ll be looking for the inner core of the leg bone to get a crusty brown that’s beginning to separate from the bone. Wait too long, and it’ll all melt away.
While they’re cooking, make some toast from a good crusty bread, and chop up some flat leaf parsley.
When they’re done, using a butter knife, just scoop out the hot center and spread it, just like butter, on the toast. Sprinkle with some course and crunchy sea salt, and top with the parsley.