Recipe: Cooking Osso Buco with Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil

osso buco recipe
Osso Buco — for my hubby’s birthday.

In our home, we don’t normally prepare beef, so cooking Osso Buco for my hubby’s birthday is already a special treat for us. The reason is that my mother-in-law is very concerned about the cholesterol content in beef. We do buy pork but she always has the fatty parts removed so that we only get to eat the lean meat.

Chef Donita Rose for Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil
Chef Donita Rose during the Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil event here in Bacolod C’ity where she demonstrated her own version of kansi.

Thankfully, we attended an event by the Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil here in Bacolod, featuring Chef Donita Rose. If you can recall, Donita was a famous actress and MTV VJ. But eventually, marriage and family has changed her focus and she studied to become a chef. She is very passionate about leveling up the dishes that she whips up in the kitchen, particularly focusing on preparing food using healthy and natural ingredients. Chef Donita is an avid user of Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil because she is bent on making her dishes heart-healthy. “We must always be conscious that the ingredients that we use should be good for the heart, like Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil, which contains the lowest amount of bad fats (saturated fats) but packs in the good kind like Omega 3 and 6,” Donita says.

Members of the #NegrosBloggers with Chef Donita Rose and representatives of Jolly Canola Heart Mate.

So with that, I am not guilty of preparing Osso Buco for my husband. Besides, it’s not every day that it’s his birthday. Since the family is not really into Italian food except for my husband, I skipped the gremolata and risotto and just prepared other things. Here are the things that I prepared for my husband’s birthday: All About His Favorites…Just Because He is Loved

Anyway, here’s my recipe. I just have to apologize that I failed to take photos of the preparation because I spent all day in the kitchen for the six dishes that I cooked on the same day.

Osso Buco

4 slices beef shank (about 1.5 kg)
Flour, for dredging
Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil, for frying
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 large onion, chopped
3-4 Tbsps. Jolly Heart Mate Canola Oil
2 cups white wine
1 cup sliced celery (mostly stalks)
1 cup diced carrots
3 pcs. laurel leaves
3 pcs. green chili
1/2 tsp. peppercorns
1 medium red bell pepper, sliced into strips
Salt and pepper, to taste
About 5 cups chicken stock
3 Tbsps. tomato paste
Celery leaves, sliced finely

1. Wash the beef shanks, let it drip, then pat dry. Tie a string around the beef tightly then dredge in flour. In my case, I coated it thickly and you will learn the reason why.
2. Heat enough amount of oil in a big pan where you will also cook the dish. Fry the shanks, about 2-3 minutes per side. Set aside.
3. If there are some burned flour on the pan, remove them with a ladle, along with some of the oil.
4. Saute the garlic and onions and add in the shanks, placing them side by side. Then pour in the wine. Bring to a boil.
5. Add the celery, carrots, laurel leaves, green chili, bell peppers, and peppercorns. Season with a little salt and ground black pepper. Mix well so that the vegetables get submerged in the liquid. Cook covered in medium heat
6. When wine has reduced, about 15-20 minutes of boiling, add chicken stock. While most people would add it gradually, I added the five cups of stock altogether. I kept cooking it over medium it for about 40 minutes until I checked if the beef is already tender, so I never opened the pan. I used the pan with a crystal cover so that I won’t have to keep opening it and release the heat. Then I cooked it for another 30 minutes. If you find the pan drying up, add more liquid. If you don’t have anymore chicken stock, just add hot water and season it again with salt.
7. When the beef is tender enough, add the tomato paste and cook about five minutes more. Then stir in the celery leaves. The heat will just cook it.
8. Remove the laurel leaves and serve hot.

This Osso Buco has a rather thick, gravy-like sauce. That’s because I laid on the flour pretty thick when I first fried the shanks. But that’s okay, it came out fine. And I am happy because the bone marrow was intact when I served the Osso Buco. The meat was so tender but not overcooked so as to cause the marrow to fall off into the sauce. Ahhh happiness. haha And that is why I needed to fry it in Jolly Heart Mate canola oil. I also omitted the rosemary and thyme and I preferred it that way.

Kitchen hack: I really don’t have the time and patience to prepare chicken stock. So I just boiled water with a couple of chicken cubes. Not very healthy but does the trick.

All About His Favorites…Just Because He is Loved

Papa Eats Birthday
Happy Birthday Papa Eats. In his official “uniform” created by Uba Laba Ilonggowear. Cake by JJC Nutri Treats.

The other half of this blog, Mama Cooks. Papa Eats., is celebrating his birthday. From the title of our blog, you know that we are perfect together–I love to cook and he loves to eat (actually we both love to eat, but that is a different story).

So for his birthday, which we celebrated a couple of days early just so his sister is here with us, I came up with a menu that included some of his most “favoritest” dishes. While we are adventurous eaters and we love to eat anything and everything, there are of course things that top his list. I was thinking of Italian peppered with seafood and so this is my menu:

Osso Buco
Cooked four slices of beef shanks for Osso Buco–oohhh so good… falling off the bones.
steamed crabs
Steamed crabs with lots of orange crab fat.

Osso Buco (sans gremolata as the family may not appreciate it anyway)
Paella (I wanted risotto but they didn’t take the trial very well)
Creamy Pesto Chicken
Buttered Shrimps
Steamed Crabs
Frozen Oreo Cheesecake

beefy lasagna
Beefy lasagna in a 10×10 pan.
buttered shrimps
Hubby loves seafood so shrimps are always a staple in my menu–no matter how the others are changed.

I just ordered carrot cake from JJC Nutri Treats here in Bacolod and it was awesome! So delicious and moist and with buttery frosting. For orders, check out their Facebook page,

frozen Oreo cheesecake
I made the frozen Oreo cheesecake a couple of days earlier.

I posted photos of our dinner on Facebook and many friends said that he’s a lucky guy. But I think that it just goes both ways. My husband is a good man, loyal, loving, and kind, and a doting father to our daughters. If there is anyone who deserves to have all his favorites on his birthday, he does. So I woke up early to go to the wet market and buy the fresh ingredients that I needed for the day. I started preparing early and all turned out wonderfully around 6pm that I had plenty of time to take photos of the end-results. While I did have assistants who peeled and sliced most of the vegetables as well as wash the dishes, I prepared and cooked everything. Hubby is so happy and thankful for his birthday dinner and I am pleased that he is.

Happy Birthday, Babe! My lover, my soulmate, my food critic, my food tasting partner, my greatest supporter, my pillar of strength, and of course, my best friend. You deserve all the best. I love you! 😀

seafood paella
My homemade seafood paella, complete with saffron, has always been a hit with my husband and the rest of the family.
pesto chicken
Though it doesn’t look much, hubby has always requested that I cook this for him.

Farewell Dinner at Ading’s Pala Pala Bacolod

Food…Seafood comforts like no other
at Ading’s Pala-pala.

sizzling blue marlin at Ading's Pala-pala
Sizzling blue marlin is love. Fish is fresh and cooked just right–sizzling in butter with a sweet sauce.

It’s a bittersweet reunion a couple of weekends ago with my brother Iman and his wife Rosel. We were happy for their homecoming here in Bacolod but we know that it was just a short time as they had to fly back to Manila for their trip to Australia. And we wouldn’t know how soon or how long before we will see them again.

And while they were here, they still brought some work home with them so we kinda just squeezed in some time to be together. They made sure that they ate what they were craving for when they were here. First off, of course, we had dinner at my parents’ house for my mother’s homecooking. Then we had burgers at Das Burgery, the newest burger joint in town. Brother was happy because he liked the taste and the price was just a fraction of what they would have in Manila. And he says that they taste really good.

Butter-garlic crabs at Ading's Pala-pala
Sis-in-law was craving for crabs and she got them alright–buttered with lots of garlic!
butter-garlic shrimps at Ading's Pala-pala
Butter-garlic shrimps. We had to scoop the butter and use it to flavor our rice. Yeah, our bad.

Related post: Where to Eat in Bacolod

On their last day, we had a seafood dinner at Ading’s Pala-pala because sis-in-law was craving for crabs. We were all very happy with the meal as our seafood cravings had been satisfied. All the dishes that we ordered had butter in them but we did not find them cloying. In fact, we enjoyed every bit…every morsel.

Baked scallops at Ading's Pala-pala
Baked scallops at Ading’s Pala-pala

But at the end of the meal, we all know that we had to say our goodbyes, as they were leaving early the next morning. The only good thing is, our seafood meal comforted us, albeit temporarily.

Bacolod seafood restaurant
Our melon shake had free seafood wind-up toys.
Bacolod seafood restaurant
Our family after our meal at Ading’s Pala-pala. I like these drapes made of shells at the background.

Adings Pala-Pala
Old Pala-Pala, Bacolod City 6100
Negros Occidental, Philippines
Open daily” 11:00AM-3:00PM, 5:00PM-3:00AM