Thursday, November 11, 2010

Roasted Bone Marrow


If there’s one thing that can make or break a bowl of pho, it’s the broth.  One of the keys to making good pho broth is having a good amount of bones, preferably beef marrow bones, in addition to whatever cut of meat is being used.  When I make pho, I typically use marrow bones to fortify an oxtail base.


Sometimes, though, I go a little overboard with the amount of marrow bones that I buy for pho.  It’s easy to do when they’re only $0.29/lb.  The Chinese butcher that I get my marrow bones from takes fresh, whole leg bones and saws them down to 2-3 inch chunks upon ordering.  Unused bones usually go into the freezer for a future batch of stock, but this time I thought I’d roast them off and spread the marrow on some bread.


After about 15 minutes, the marrow started to pull away from the bone.  Based on the “recipe” I followed (I mean, all you have to do is stick bones in the oven), the marrow was ready.


I may have pulled them a little too soon because there were some parts that were pink, but I was afraid if I left them in the oven for too long the marrow would simply melt away into the pan.  Spread over a piece of bread and salted to taste, the bread tasted like it was dipped in rendered beef fat.  Essentially, that’s what it was.


As tasty as rendered beef fat is, I regret not waiting until I had some lime and cilantro on hand.  That would’ve done well to cut the fattiness of the marrow.

Roasted bone marrow

  1. Beef marrow bones => oven ~15 mins @ 450 F, cut side up, until marrow is soft and pulls away from bone
  2. Harvested marrow + bread + something acidic + something bright + salt => eat

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