Tuesday, August 22, 2006
The other day I realised that winter is nearly over & to my shock & horror I haven’t made a single batch of lamb shanks this season. Well of course I had to rectify that immediately & cooked up this tasty version from Jamie Oliver’s The Naked Chef. The thing I love about this dish is the fact that really you just chop everything up, cook it a bit then chuck it in the oven for a couple of hours & wallah you have a gorgeously tender piece of meat falling off the bone, complete with intensely flavoured veggies, a little mash, polenta or whatever takes your fancy on the side & your meal is complete.
Spiced Slow-cooked Lamb Shanks
4 lamb shanks
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon corianders seeds
1 small dried red chilli
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon dried marjoram or oregano
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
1 large carrot, quartered & finely sliced
6 sticks of celery, quartered & finely sliced
2 medium onions, quartered & finely chopped
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
170ml dry white wine
6 anchovy fillets
2 x 400g tins of plum tomatoes
1 handful of fresh basil, marjoram or flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
Season the lamb with salt & pepper. Smash up the coriander seeds & dried chilli & mix with rosemary & dried oregano. Roll the lamb in this mixture, pressing it well. Dust the lamb with the flour.
Heat a thick bottomed casserole pan, add the oil, brown the meat on all sides & then remove from the pan. Add the garlic, carrot, celery, onions & a pinch of salt and sweat until softened. Add the vinegar & allow it to reduce to a syrup. Pour in the wine & allow to simmer for 2 minutes. Add the anchovies & tinned tomatoes, kept whole. Shake the pan & return the lamb to it. Bring to the boil, put on a lid & simmer in the oven at 180c for 1 ½ hours, then remove lid & cook for a further half an hour. Season to taste & stir in the fresh herbs.