Beef marrow in January, kind of counter intuitive, right? Not for me. Turning the page on the calendar into a new year has never meant turning my back on the foods I've met and enjoyed over the past year. This year, that list included farro, green smoothies, artisan butter from Eau Claire and bone marrow. Variety is not only the spice of life, it's the key to dietary happiness for this girl. I just need to make sure there are more green smoothies than butter and beef— sounds thoroughly reasonable to me. I wonder how many kale and collard smoothies I need to drink to balance out stuffed bone marrow? I guess it's a good thing I like green smoothies.
Back to tale of the marrow and mushrooms. I've stuffed pumpkins, chickens, clams— why not add bone marrow to the list? I settled on mushrooms, garlic and red onions as a good place to start for my first foray into bone stuffing. It was everything I hoped for— savory compound beefy butter in a bone. The family is still not completely on the marrow train, they aren't on the green smoothie train either, but they are coming around (slowly). A plate of bones won't hit the Dougherty dinner table more than every couple of months but when it does, it's a dinner I can't wait to tuck into.
Beef Marrow & Mushrooms
4 beef bones, 3 0r 4 inches long
2 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1 cup cremini mushrooms, chopped
1/8 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Maldon salt and coarsely ground pepper
Rinse and dry the bones. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat and add the onions and mushrooms, sauté for about 8 - 10 minutes or until the vegetables are softened. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes. Remove the vegetables from sauté pan and cool completely in the refrigerator. Scrape or push out as much of the marrow as possible and chop it up into bite size pieces. Add the cooled vegetables, shredded parmesan and thoroughly combine. Stuff the bones with the marrow/vegetable mixture, season with salt and pepper and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour. You want the filling to be as cold as possible before you place it in the oven (to avoid having it cook too quickly and completely render).
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the bones in a roasting pan and roast for about 15 minutes. Begin checking the bones at 10 minutes and pull them out when the marrow starts to bubble and the tops are getting brown. If they cook them too long, you'll end up with a pan full of empty bones swimming in a pool of rendered beef fat. Serve immediately with lemon slices, parsley salad or a few salted capers on slices of toasted baguette.