Roasted Bone Marrow – AKA Meat Butter

Bone marrow. I swear you’ll love it. Don’t get me wrong, I know it sounds strange if you’ve never had it. You might even get a bit queezy. Don’t though. Seriously don’t. I’ll find you and…well, that’s a different story. But I promise, if you like meat and you like butter, than roasted bone marrow is where they meet in heaven. Meat heaven that is. It’s so good that when Anthony Bourdain was asked, What would you have for your last meal on earth?, his response was, “The roasted bone marrow at St. John restaurant in London”. Pretty big words, no? Good thing I came into a big stash of bones last week…

Even though I’ve never been to Fergus Henderson’s restaurant, my attraction to this wonderful cut is tied to him. I can’t for the life of me remember where I first heard of this dish, but after several reaffirming offerings, it has stepped into its own special place. The best part; marrow is chalk full of goodies. Sure there is fat, but it’s mono saturated (the good one) and then there is the protein, of which it also has lots. It’s hard to imagine that as humans became who we are today, marrow harvesting wasn’t a popular event for staying big and strong. Pulling Fergus’s The Whole Beast: Nose To Tail Eating from the shelf, I started slicing up goodies for the parsley salad while the oven warmed to the required 450 degrees. Checking the bone marrow after 20 minutes, I noticed the thick chunk of bone needed a bit more time. Another 20 minutes later and the unctous butter was pliable, juicy and ready to lube up my throat. A quick smear on some freshly toasted bread, sprinkle of salad and finish of thick salt….divine. heaven. love.

With Sarah not home in time to enjoy the freshly slathered bread, I let the remaining marrow ooze out of the bone and back into the pan. Before I knew it, the pan was filled with the meatiest of cooking oils. So I took out a thick, bone-in, rib cut pork chop that was getting a chili rub down and got to business. A whole lot of delicious pan frying made this one sick chop. Topping the plate with some freshly roasted beats (remember, drop beats not bombs) and steamed broccoli completed the dish. A wonderful dinner on a warm January evening.

Roast Bone Marrow and Parsley Salad – Original Recipe.
12 three-inch (7 1/2-centimeter) pieces veal marrowbone
1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked from stems
2 shallots, peeled and very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons (30 grams) capers
2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
Coarse sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Toasted bread, for serving

1. Prepare the bones: Put the bones in an ovenproof frying pan or roasting pan; place in a 450°F (230°C) oven. Depending on bone thickness, roasting should take about 20 minutes. You’re looking for loose and giving marrow, but marrow that’s not yet melted away.

2. Prepare the parsley salad: While bones are roasting, lightly chop the parsley and mix it with the shallots and capers. Just before serving, dress salad with the olive oil and lemon juice; salt and pepper to taste.

3. Serve the dish: Don’t completely season this dish before serving; let the diner do the last-minute seasoning. To eat, scrape the marrow from the bone onto the toast; season it with coarse sea salt. Place a pinch of parsley salad on top; eat immediately.

11 thoughts on “Roasted Bone Marrow – AKA Meat Butter

  1. Chris, you’re killin’ me with all this meaty goodness! I was at the store to pick up meats for Haggis and had to talk myself out of buying oxtails. I already had ground sirloin, lamb, and veal in my cart, along with a bucket o’ chicken livers.

    I will try all of these beefy treats someday.

  2. Chris! Incredible feat! I have been there, as you know, and did order this very dish (at least I think you know: it is all posted on my site) and yours looks actually BETTER than the one at St. John’s…. and, you have made the right amount. Four look really pretty on a plate, but one is definitely enough… even for two people the size of the one you have. Isn’t it incredible with the parsley salad? He had somehow slightly pickled the shallots – or they had “self pickled” from sitting in the acidic dressing. I couldn’t get over the taste sensation. His bread was very very dense and hardy…. therefore, waaaay too filling to really get through anything else on the menu. But, we did!
    He served a grey finishing salt with it which was also lovely.
    Standing ovation for you!
    I haven’t posted mine yet… hope to!
    I served more on the plate, but the plate was for two.

  3. I love it. Made the same identical meal sans parsley salad three weeks ago and I ended up eating most of the marrow. Family gave me the courtesy of trying, but it was not the same hit for them.

    I grew up with Sunday Bone Marrow. It’s a treat!
    Well done Chris. Next time in YYC, Charcut has it.

  4. Oh, that reminds me of my youth… I didn’t know people around here would even CONSIDER eating bone marrow! In France, you make this winter stew called pot-au-feu, with beef and tons of vegetables and bone marrow and we eat the marrow like you did, on toasted bread with a pinch of salt… Heaven!!! Now I have to ask, where did you get the marrow? I want some!!!

  5. gaarp – I think you are equally hunger inducing; your shopping list is great.

    Valerie – Thanks! I agree that you don’t need much of this treat, as it’s very rich. I look forward to your post.

    Peter – It must be bone marrow season! I can only imagine how great it would be to have this as a Sunday treat.

    Kelly – Thanks. I wonder if there are other bright toppings that would work…

    Dr. CaSo – Pot-Au-Feu sounds delicious! Maybe we can exchange some marrow for stew.

  6. Hey, that’s a great idea 🙂 Tell me when would be a good evening for you and Sarah and you can come to my place and we can cook together.

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