Roasted Marrow Bones with Gremolata, Toast Points, and Salad

Roasted Marrow Bones with Gremolata, Toast Points, and Salad is my answer to that inevitable question that many chefs are asked, “What would be your last meal?” Most definitely, this is one of them.

This dish just does it for me. It’s one of those decadent, luxurious treats that I indulge in along with my significant other every couple of years. Don’t get me wrong, I think about it a lot more than that, but it’s not something that I’d just go out and buy on a whim without a bit of premeditation or planning or without something to celebrate.  

Perfect for an intimate birthday dinner or special occasion, the recipe for roasting the marrow bones is deceptively simple. Serve over a simply dressed salad with a few pickled hot pepper rings to dress up the plate, if you like. Top the bones with a generous portion of gremolata, which will add tartness and acidity to cut through the richness of the melt-in-your-mouth buttery, creamy, nutty flavor of the marrow itself. Spread over toast points, and you’ll be in heaven. I suggest a brisk Sauvignon Blanc or a sparkling Cava instead of a full-bodied red since the marrow’s flavor is rather delicate.

On occasion, you can find marrow bones at your local supermarket, but more than likely, they’ll be cut crosswise. Call your butcher ahead and ask him to cut the bones lengthwise (canoe cut), about 7 to 8 inches in length. In either case, believe it or not, the bones should be pretty inexpensive.

And if, by chance, you have any leftover gremolata, you can use the remainder to swirl into soups and beans or as a topping for meat, fish, eggs, and hummus. The possibilities are endless.

Here are the recipes.

For the Gremolata

Yields about 1 cup

  • 3 Tbs. toasted pine nuts, coarsely chopped
  • ¾ cup lightly packed coarsely chopped parsley
  • 2 Tbs. minced shallot
  • 2 Tbs. capers, rinsed, drained, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest
  • 2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. granulated garlic
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

In a medium bowl, combine nuts, parsley, shallot, capers, zest, juice, garlic, ½ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper.

Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking continuously.

Let sit for 10 minutes for the flavors to meld. Adjust the seasonings, if necessary, and serve.

For the Beef Marrow Bones

Serves 2

  • 1 canoe-cut large marrow bone, about 8-inches long, at room temperature
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Crusty bread, toasted and cut into thick strips or points
  • Lightly dressed salad of choice, optional

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 450°F.

Line a medium rimmed baking sheet with foil. Pat the bones dry with paper towels. Arrange the bones, marrow side up, on the baking sheet. Season with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Roast until the marrow is light brown and soft, about 15-minutes. 

Serve immediately with the gremolata, bread, and salad, if desired.

Questions? I’m always here with answers.

–Chef Diana

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