Dishes to share – with family or friends – are certainly the best antidotes to combat the anxieties, uncertainties and other vicissitudes of everyday life. In his work Casseroles, love and crises, Jean-Claude Kaufmann deciphers the meals of families, those who serve ordinary frozen foods or those who simmer the recipe evoking family memories, the recipe that is passed on from generation to generation, recorded in a pretty handwritten notebook. The dish to share also forges links between blended families. The meal is, according to the sociologist, the architect of family life. So the choice of dishes cannot be trivial!

The daily frenzy of hastily dispatched meals gives way, for my part, to a long, unchanging ceremony for Sunday meals around a dish to share. A beautiful flea flea linen tablecloth covers the dining room table. A few dahlias picked from the family vegetable garden are displayed here and there in the room. The plates of the wedding service, barely dulled by time, sit enthroned on the table. In the kitchen, the dish has been simmering for several hours. And the choice was not easy because each recipe takes into account the small preferences of the guests gathered.

A long simmered osso buco

A roast chicken to delight the table? With the carcass to be skinned for some, fools leave it there, this very tasty part nestled above the rump of the poultry, to savor for others. Without forgetting the cloves of garlic in a shirt confit in the juice and the whole shallots fluffy to perfection.

A leg of lamb and flageolet beans in gravy? The first well-colored and rosier slices close to the bone delight all taste buds, the famous lamb shank so tender is often attributed to children or grandparents.

The big aioli that some peck and others devour according to their appetite? The choice of vegetables is generous, seasonal. The poached cod is served in a large dish with, why not whelks, which go well with garlic sauce.

It will finally be a long simmered osso buco, tender veal like an eiderdown and tender vegetables.

In my library

Three books devoted to this family cooking: the reissue of Family dinners by the great Spanish chef Ferran Adrià, with step by step and stripped down styling. The recipes are intended for 2, 12, 20 or 75 people! (Phaidon editions, € 39.95).

At the Loves table! is the work of two friends, Gabrielle Coppée and Amélie Gersdorff who have recorded 60 recipes for all everyday situations (Éditions Les dîners en ville, € 29). And the wonderful book illustrated with watercolors by Alessia Serafini which presents 7 dishes overflowing with emotions: The hands-on (Epure editions, € 19).


Osso buco with vegetables

For 6 persons

6 thick slices of bone-in veal shank
50 cl of tomato pulp
2 carrots (orange or yellow) + 1 bunch of leafy carrots
2 bunches of small turnips
300 g button mushrooms
2 stalks of celery
2 purple onions
3 cloves of garlic
40 g of flour
1 organic orange
30 cl of white wine
3 sprigs of oregano
4 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 bird’s eye chili
2 tbsp. tablespoon olive oil
Fine salt and freshly ground pepper
For the gremolata, the essential condiment 10 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley
zest of 1⁄2 a lemon
60 g parmesan
1 small clove of garlic

Preheat the oven to 180 ° C.

Flour the shank slices and brown them on each side in a sauté pan with olive oil. Small dice the carrots, celery, onions and garlic cloves. Cut the mushrooms into quarters. Remove the tops of small carrots and turnips, brush the roots. Remove the slices of meat and set them aside in a large gratin dish. Add the vegetables to the pan and, as soon as they are lightly colored, deglaze with the white wine. Add the chopped zest and orange juice, the bouquet garni, the bird’s eye pepper, salt, pepper and finally the tomato pulp. Mix well and pour this sauce over the meat, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour 30 minutes at 180 ° C. Remove the aluminum foil, sprinkle with the thyme and oregano and continue cooking for 30 minutes.

Prepare the gremolata: coarsely chop the parsley, lemon zest, garlic and Parmesan with a slicing knife. Serve the vegetable osso buco sprinkled with gremolata at the last moment.


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