Eating Nose to Tail


 

This recipe is lifted almost exactly from Fergus Henderson's book The Whole Hog.  Not that roasting a marrow bone is all that difficult, but his advice on how to eat the bone and his recipe for the parsley salad make this a truly special dish.  I highly recommend everyone go out and buy his book.  God bless that Englishman.

The trick to bone marrow is to get a good bone, we're talking about beef bones by the way.  When you look at the bone you want to see as much surface area of bone marrow as possible.  You also want a nice round bone, I find that this helps with even roasting, but I could just be superstitious.  Once you have the proper bones the rest of the recipe is as simple as turning on an oven.

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Those are some good looking bones.  I wrap the bottoms of the bones in foil before they go into a 450 degree oven to prevent seepage.  But it's not a necessary step.
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These bones roasted for around 20 minutes, you want the bone marrow to be jiggly and giving but the marrow should stay in place within the bone and not ooze out.  You'll know it when you see it, I promise.

To accompany this incredibly rich dish a citrusy parsley salad is ideal.  Make a vinaigrette using lemon juice instead of vinegar, chop up some onion or shallot for the dressing as well.  Then simply toss with some roughly chopped parsley, season and serve alongside your bones.
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You'll want to serve your bones with a nice baguette or some toast points and plenty of good salt, and cracked black pepper if you feel like it.  The salt should be added by the diner at the table, salt is a very personal thing.
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Bone marrow is rich and luscious, but does not have a particularly strong flavor.  It's indistinctly beefy, but the it's the texture and vague viscosity that at first confuses but inevitably seduces the palate.  Although this dish is especially good in the late fall don't wait til then to try it.  Serve this with a nice glass of dark beer.
 


Comments

05/26/2009 12:06

Wait- these are pig bones, but the taste is slightly beefy?

Oh, and how should I ask for this at the butchers'?

Thanks!

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sydney
05/26/2009 13:01

Well that's embarrassing. I'm sorry I should have been more specific; they are beef bones, not pork bones.

If you go to any good butcher and tell them you want good marrow roasting bones they should be able to give you some.

I've had good and bad experiences with butchers. Some are really nice and give you helpful tips, and some get a little surly because it's sometimes more work for them to cut the bones (it takes a few seconds, so really?) and they are only going to get a buck or so for their trouble.

Make sure you tell your butcher you're roasting them for marrow, and not just making stock. You can occasionally get a good marrow bone in with stock bones but most of the time you don't.

I actually got mine at a Asian Supermarket already cut, so that's an option too.

Good luck with your shopping, and let me know how it goes for you!

Reply
sydney
05/26/2009 13:04

@Daniel I added a line to the post about the bones being beef, thanks so much for getting me to clarify that!

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05/26/2009 13:27

Ah, I assumed wrongly that with a cookbook called The Whole Hog, it would be pork.

Thanks for the advice :)

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09/02/2013 01:48

This dish Roasted Bone Marrow with Parley Salad you posted here was really very good one. I have tried it making myself and it turns out to be the best dish I have ever prepared. I wonder there is any reason behind wrapping the bottom of the bones. I think this dish won’t be as tasty as it looks if the citrusy parsley salad is not there.

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