Getting a large bone…

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My fingers hit the keyboard today whilst I was still chewing on a mouthful of worthiness. Tahini has its place, which place should not be in my mouth as I start to write on the glory of the roasted marrow bone. Meat and me, at home or away, are not often seen together. We go together like a horse and carnage, like peaches and scream; we are not soul mates. I should also mention that I am contrary which is the only lucid reason that I can offer for my pleasure in eating roasted marrow bones. An inkling of an excuse was forming in my mind which involved comparing the wearing of leather shoes to the eating of animal bones, but it sounds lame, even in its gestation, so I shall abort the concept and return to declaring my inexcusable pleasure in the spooning of softly melting marrow from a plate of roasted beef bones.

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I was first introduced to marrow bone at the St.John Restaurant in Clerkenwell, which one day will be recognised as the Eton of eating. There, in the late 90’s, I often ate Fergus Henderson’s celebrated roasted veal marrow bones with parsley salad – – which must be one of the classic dishes for those who hold the pleasure of unadorned eating in high esteem. It is a dish that combines flavour, simplicity and integrity whilst, by its evident lack of wastage, accords a respect to the animal slaughtered for our benefit.

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The last time I partook of the bone was in Lyon, at Le Potager, and the bone that was on offer was a bone of considerable size. Eating the inside of a large animal’s leg before heading out for a four course lunch elsewhere is a challenge in true Rabelaisian tradition and one that I would strongly advise against. Both the superb os à moelle and the trencherman’s lunch at La Meunière were exemplary….but not together. I should mention that we drunk a wonderful white wine with the os à moelle, a St. Pourçain, which I had not drunk before and which I can’t find locally…more’s the pity.

About Food,Photography & France

Photographer and film maker living in France. After a long career in London, my wife and I have settled in the Vendee, where we run residential digital photography courses with a strong gastronomic flavour.
This entry was posted in 2015, Art photography, Cooking, Cuisine bourgeoise, Digital photography, food, Food and Photography, Food photographer, France, Meat, Photography, photography course, Uncategorized, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

40 Responses to Getting a large bone…

  1. Darya says:

    I adore bone marrow, I could eat it every day (ok, maybe not)! Your pictures are wonderful! I should ask my butcher if he would agree to slice the bones lengthwise for me some day.

  2. Mad Dog says:

    I like the look of those long bones – how delicious!
    I saw that article on Fergus and bone marrow back in October and complimented Fergus, then wished I hadn’t – as usual he got quite sheepish and bashful – bless him 🙂

  3. Wonderful looking bones! I’ll try to ask at the German butcher.

  4. Love St John’s and would love to dig into those bones right now. Thanks for the wine recommendation took now I’m curious!

  5. I’ve never tried roasted marrow, Roger. Definitely something I need to rectify when I’m your way.

  6. cecilia says:

    Have you ever read the book Any Human Heart by William Boyd? Sometimes you remind me of the leading character Logan. Or maybe he remminds me of you. Though i am sure you would be better behaved.. c

  7. St. John’s is where I celebrated my first birthday in London and the marrow bones are my husband’s favorite! Gorgeous.

  8. Now I will have to go there – I’ve heard so much about those bones and your recommendation is just the push I need. Trouble is that there are just so many good restaurants around these days that it’s easy to forget the stalwarts. Peaches and scream – love! Happy New Year Roger! PS I loved Any Human Heart…

  9. Looks delicious. It’s been on my list to try. What do you use to split the bones lengthwise?

  10. These look fantastic. I enjoy bone marrow, but it’s a ‘once-every-few-months’ pleasure for me.

  11. Francesca says:

    Meat and me are not seen together either. Dining out in France, the home of meat eating, often involves creative menu searching when visiting there.

    • In the country area of France in which we live it is usual for people to ask “what meat are we eating tonight” rather than “what are we having for dinner”….however, France is full of the most wonderful ingredients for the non meat eater…the restaurant thing is a problem:)

  12. Eha says:

    You have brought out my Gemini nature: cannot think of anything more glorious than that os a moelle . . . do not have a single argument with matters meaty anyways . . . . and then forty years of using the word ‘medical’ does make me turn to my other side . . . 🙂 ! Become an utter spoilsport, I know . . .

  13. suej says:

    I used to love to make Ossi Bucci….the marrow was the best bit! Alas, veal shin is hard to get where I am. As for St Pourçain, we were on a car tour years ago, and we visited that place and a wine cave there – most interesting. I have noticed a wine merchant with it on their list recently, perhaps I should track some down!

  14. Oh you lucky, lucky man!

  15. Michelle says:

    Oh, Roger, once again you’re making me want to get on the first plane to Lyon.

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