Garlicky Marrow Bruschetta
I learned to appreciate “weird” foods from the French side of my family. While my Southern/Scotch grandmother filled our bellies with her chilies and soups, cookies and fudge sauce — the Caribbean/French side swooned over things like boudin noir (blood sausage), accras (codfish fritters), calves liver, and marrow. In fact, once when I was ten, my Caribbean/French grandmother, Madou, actually served a whole calves brain topped with tomato sauce for dinner one night. Picture that… and then picture my horrified 10-year-old response.
However, the boudin noir is amazing. I still love calves liver, the accras is a family-wide favorite and I always claim any leftover marrow bones from dinner.
I’m willing to bet I’ve lost at least half of you by now — and you’ve moved on to something more mainstream, that meatloaf or chicken, something with an egg on top… but for you hearty few who’ve decided to stick around, you’re gonna love this…
My first recollections of marrow came from my grandfather who would always greedily pick the beef bones from the pot or platter and noisily suck the marrow out. I’m not gonna lie, that sucking sound is reminiscent of a sinus infection, but the marrow is not. It’s like intense umami butter – with a fatty richness that coats your tongue. I can’t get enough – so much so – that whenever I see them on a menu or in the market, I get them.
Restaurants can source the long bones and butcher them vertically, like a long narrow serving dish for the heavenly marrow. Diners scoop out the marrow and spread it on bread or toast points. My butcher doesn’t cut the bones vertically, so I work with the cross cut bones and that’s just fine. I like to rub a little garlic on grilled bread and finish with fresh parsley and a little lemon zest – kind of like a gremolata. With a glass of red wine or bubbly, it’s positively DECADENT! Happy New Year!
Garlicky Marrow Bruschetta
- 2 pounds marrow bones cut crosswise about 1- 1/2" thick
- 1/4-1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4-5 slices artisan bread from a boule or country loaf with a sturdy crust
- 1 clove garlic peeled
- parsley chopped
- lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 425°. Line a baking sheet with foil and place the marrow bones cut-side-up on top of the foil. Sprinkle with the salt and roast in the hot oven for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat the grill to a medium high heat -- about 400° and grill the bread on either side until browned and crisp with telltale bits of char. Transfer the bread to a sheet pan and rub one side of the bread lightly with raw garlic. The crispy bread acts as a grater and infuses the bread with the garlic aroma and flavors -- so don't be too heavy handed -- you won't use the whole clove. Cut the bread into halves or thirds (depending on how large the slices are) and serve in a bread basket or alongside the marrow bones.
- When the marrow has finished roasting, transfer to a serving platter and sprinkle with chopped parsley and lemon zest.
- To serve, use a small spreader knife to scoop out the marrow - spread it on the grilled garlic toasts, like butter and enjoy!
More Weird French Appetizers:
Can’t wait to enjoy this tonight! Hubby won’t eat it but my step daughter and I can’t wait.
I’m sure it will be Decadent and Delicious !
I hope you and. your stepdaughter enjoy it!
A friend of mine posted roasted marrow bones on toast points and I immediately became intrigued. I love trying any new foods and my kids do as well. We will be trying your recipe. My friend roasted their bones at 400 for an hour. We will prob fall somewhere in between but my mouth is already watering even though I’ve never tasted this before. Signing up for your newsletter. Can’t wait to find new things to try!
Thanks for the great recipes and reminders of my comfort food. Belgian Father and French mother who immigrated to Texas when ai was 4. I can relate to the “ strange food “ on our plate. When an American grows up next to an Italian family they always want to get invited to dinner..not the case when you grow up next to a French family. Rabbit, wild boar, marrow bones on chanterelle ragu, tripe..it can test your dinner guest.
Ain’t that the truth! Isn’t it funny how we grow to love those “strange foods” though?
Who doesn’t love salt cod fritters? They are a family favorite here too! As for marrow bruschetta, the question is whether I can keep the bones away from the dog. 🙂 That does look decadent though and I like the lemon zest and parsley to balance the flavors to keep it from being too rich.
You might have a tough time keeping the bones from the dog… I grant you that, but if you can — Oh-Ma-Gawd!
Oh man this looks so yummy!!! anything with garlic is good with me!
I’m with you… anything garlic!
I love the rubbing the garlic on the bread after it is grilled! I am saving this to try out!
Let me know how you like it!
Rubbing Garlic to the grilled Bread is a new concept to me. I would love to try it someday.
It doesn’t take much to really permeate the bread. If you like garlic, I think you’ll enjoy it!
I remember my mom making bone marrow stew when I was younger…it was delicious!! I don’t often see bone marrow but I know how good it is and how good it is for you too! This sounds really good…I know I would love it with some of that crusty garlic bread. Beautiful post. Happy New Year dear!
A very Happy New Year to you, Catherine!
I’ve never had marrow and I admit it really intimidates me (I was a vegetarian for 13 years – went back to omnivore status about 6 years ago). However, this really looks tasty – I’m tempted to see if I could actually find marrow bones somewhere (from a happy cow, of course) and try this out.
I understand the wariness to try them — and it may be an acquired taste, but it’s so silky and rich and beefy that I am a hopeless marrow lover! If you do try it — please let me know what you think!
Love different bruschetta! We actually sell a few toppings in our store. I never heard about using bone marrow. very interesting!!!
I love fun toppings for a bruschetta — I’d love to see what you sell. As for the marrow, try it and let me know what you think!
I always love to try different things. I would definitely love to try this recipe! I could only imagine the flavor from the marrow- it probably is so delicious!
It’s like beef butter – Oh-Ma-Gawd!
I love bone marrow, these look amazing. I’m drooling!
You’re not the only one. My husband gets a twinkle in his eye when I put this on the table!
What a fun idea! I love that you made it garlicy, yum!
It’s not called Garlic & Zest for nothing, LOL!
Haute cuisine! Very nice for NYE or special party app. Impressive and delicious.
Funny, how this could be thought of as haute cuisine when really it’s just nose to tail cooking –nothing wasted!