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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Milan, Veneto, and Sicily in One Dinner

Lately, my husband and I have been debating where we should go for our next vacation. Italy has come up a couple of times - to give a not-so-subtle hint, I prepared a taste of Italy dinner. Hopefully, the "hint" will be as memorable as this dinner!

Osso Buco with Creamy Polenta, Wild Mushrooms, and Mascarpone
accompanied by Cipollate con Pancetta
Starting from Milan, I prepared an Osso Buco, which was topped with braised vegetables and garnished with gremolata, an herb condiment of parsley, garlic, and lemon zest. 

Moving on to a specialty of the Veneto, the osso buco was served with a Creamy Polenta with Wild Mushrooms and Mascarpone. Although the authentic version usually calls for white polenta made from stone-ground white grits, I opted for my favorite version of polenta made from cornmeal instead. A mixture of oyster and shiitake mushrooms were made into a thick sauce to add to the polenta. A single dollop of mascarpone adds a thick creamy texture to the dish. 

Lastly, Sicily brings the delicious Cipollate con Pancetta, which is a simple dish of bacon-wrapped scallions. The sharp flavors of both the scallions and the bacon spice up the more mild, complex flavors of the osso buco and polenta. 

We had a nice bottle of wine to go with dinner. Life is just too good to be true sometimes.


  1. sounds and looks like such a beautiful dinner. Yum. I love Italian food, I've been wanting to go to Italy for a while myself. I hope he got the hint so i can live vicariously through you guys till i can go myself :)

  2. What a beautiful dinner!! I was in Italy last year and cannot wait to go back!

  3. Well you've convinced me. Looks amazing!

  4. What a fabulous meal. Hope he got your not-so-subtle hint! :-)

  5. That dinner sounds amazing! You guys definitely know how to eat well!

  6. I love your "travel to Italy" theme on a plate! A delightful meal, the combination of all the components is terrific! Hope you get to go to Italy for your vacation :)

  7. Wow! This is art on a plate; looks straight off the table in an Italian restaurant. The polenta screams richness and the osso buco looks very tender.

  8. Mouth-watering post. This dish looks really tempting.