Gremolata is a special type of a condiment prepared with herbs and lemon zest. Garlic and parsley leaves are added to the gremolata frequently although there is no standard gremolata recipe as such. It is believed to have been originated in Milan, Italy and serves as an accompaniment to the traditional dish of ossobuco alla Milanese or braised veal shanks. The dish is also alternatively known as gremolada. The lemon rind is the only fixed ingredient in different variations although the gremolata recipe usually recommends the use of garlic and parsley. Fresh mint leaves are also sparingly used to garnish the gremolata frequently. Adding a quantity of anchovy paste and flavoring it with rosemary and sage is a popular variation of the condiment too. Apart from the traditional veal dish, the gremolata can be used to add taste to sea food dishes as well.
History Of The Gremolata Recipe
There is no documented record for the origin of the gremolata recipe apart from the fact that it is consumed in Milan. The term gremolata is believed to have been derived from the French word gremolade.
Ingredients And Popular Gremolata Recipe
A bunch of parsley, garlic cloves and lemon rind are all the ingredients required to make the gremolata. Black pepper is the usual seasoning for the dish although a variety of herbs can be added to improve the flavor.
Chopping the parsley and mincing the garlic is a pre requisite when it comes to the art of preparing gremolata. The ingredients are usually all mixed together in a big bowl and seasoned with salt and pepper. Some fine dining establishments in Milan serve the gremolata by crushing the ingredients with the aid of a mortar and pestle.
The condiment is used with a lot of dishes particularly those using sea food. Some of the dishes that are served with the gremolata are:-
• Ossobuco Alla Milanese- A dish prepared by braising veal shanks in combination with white wine and cheese. The bone marrows are kept intact here and the tender meat is traditionally served with saffron risotto.
• Lamb Dishes- These dishes are prepared in a similar way and served with a mint flavored gremolata.
• Mussels- Prepared with white wine, Thai basil, garlic and soy sauce.
• Soft Shelled Crabs- Shallow fried after being basted with flour, the crabs are generally served with the condiment.
Variations Of Gremolata
Gremolata can be varied according to the requirement since it is meant to complement the dish that it accompanies. The popular variations of this condiment are:-
• Using orange rinds instead of lemon for a sweeter taste.
• Adding chopped hazelnuts help to improve the texture as well as the flavor.
• Capers are included within the condiment mixture when it is served with a salmon entrée dish.
Nutritional Facts Of Gremolata
The condiment is considered to be healthy by itself as it contains Vitamin C along with fresh herbs and garlic. The accompanying dish may be high in cholesterol especially if it consists of sea food while serving it with deep fried meat products may result in an increase of calories.
Gremolada can be used as a healthy dressing for salads.