April 17, 2017
Dinner, Main Dish, Lamb/Mutton,
Fruit, Tomato, Vegetables, Onions, Italian, Easy/Beginner Cooking, Easter, Entertaining, Fall/Autumn, Passover, Romantic Dinner, Sunday Dinner, Winter, Oven Bake, Stove Top, Gluten-Free, No Eggs, Non-Dairy, Wine more
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"A braise is like a stew, but requires less liquid and has a longer cooking time. Allow about two and a half hours for the lamb to cook. It can also be braised on the stovetop but check liquid every once in awhile. If you have a phenolic knob on your lid, be sure it can handle the oven temperature - I have the "classic" Le Creuset dutch oven, and it can only go to 375, which worked just fine. The "signature" line can handle much higher heat. We serve this over a nice creamy, cheesy polenta and some asparagus alongside. Yum! Recipe is adapted from one by Anne Burrell."
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Coat a large Dutch oven generously with olive oil and bring to a high heat. Season the shanks generously with salt and add them to the pan. Brown well on ALL sides. This is an very important step; don't try to rush it.
Meanwhile, puree the onions, carrots, celery and garlic in a food processor until it becomes a coarse paste. You should still be able to see small chunks of veggies. Set aside.
Remove the shanks from the pan and set aside. Discard the excess fat from the pan. Add a little more olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan and add the pureed veggies. Season with salt, to taste. Saute the veggies until they are very brown and aromatic, about 20-25 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom frequently. The brown veggies should form a sort of crust on the bottom of the pan, do not let this burn; it is where a lot of the flavor is! Don't rush this step either, since this is where you will develop the brown color and flavor.
Add the tomato paste and brown for 5 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom frequently. Stir in the wine, mixing until thoroughly incorporated. Stir frequently and cook until the wine has reduced by about half.
Add 3-4 cups water, stirring until thoroughly incorporated. Add the chopped rosemary, bay leaves, and the thyme bundle. Add the shanks back to the pot. The shanks should be submersed. If they aren't, add more water. Cover and put in the preheated oven.
The cooking time will be about 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Turn the shanks over about halfway through the cooking time. Check the shanks every 45 minutes or so. If the liquid has reduced too much add more water. If desired or needed, defat as you go.
When the shanks are done the meat should be incredibly tender and flavorful. Transfer to serving plates and garnish with Gremolata.
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients and set aside until ready to use.
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