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How to cook lamb Shanks


Allow the meat to come to room temperature and pat dry with kitchen paper.

Heat a large ovenproof pan on high heat, add a little oil and sear the meat in batches in a single layer until evenly browned all over.

Add wine, stock, vegetables, and herbs. Make sure that the liquid covers at least a third to a half of the meat and bring to a gentle simmer. 

Cover with a lid and transfer into the preheated oven or continue to simmer gently on the hob at a consistent temperature. The oven method is gentler and the meat should not stick to the pot.

Check from time to time and top up with liquid if needed. See below for times and oven temperatures. This recipe serves four people.

The temperature you cook lamb shanks will vary on the method you choose to cook them.

Classic braised lamb shanks cook at 180ºC-200ºC/Gas 4-6 for 1 ½ to 2 hours

Slow-braised lamb shanks cook at 140ºC-160ºC/Gas 1-3 for 4-6 hours

A nice way to cook lamb shanks

2 tbsp olive oil
8 lamb shanks
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 carrots, roughly chopped
few sprigs fresh rosemary
3 fresh bay leaves
4 garlic cloves, left whole
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp tomato purée
350ml white wine
500ml lamb or chicken stock

Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Pour the oil in a casserole dish or roasting tray large enough to fit all the shanks. With the pan set over a high heat on the hob, spend a good 10 mins browning the lamb all over.

Remove the lamb, add the onion and carrot and cook for 10 mins until starting to brown. Stir in the herbs and garlic and cook for a few mins more. Stir in the flour and tomato purée, season well then pour over the wine and stock.

Return the lamb shanks to the pan. Bring to a simmer, cover with a lid or tightly with foil and cook in the oven, undisturbed, for 1½-2 hrs until lamb is tender. Remove the lamb from the sauce and set aside.

Put pan back on the hob and bubble the sauce down for about 15 mins until rich and glossy. Pass through a sieve into a jug. The lamb and sauce can be stored in the fridge for two days or frozen for one month. To serve, reheat the lamb in the sauce, adding a splash of water if the sauce is too thick.


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