Monday, 22 June 2015

Lamb Shanks with Chilli Gremolata

Succulent meat, rich red wine and tomato sauce and so easy to make. It is worth making extra, they freeze well, reheat easily in the microwave or on the stovetop and if refrigerated will keep for a few days making them a perfect meal to make in advance. I cook mine on a low temperature in an elecric frypan or in the oven, they could also be cooked in a slow cooker.

Additional vegetables such as carrot and celery could be added during the cooking process, however, sometimes I just want to get them on cooking.   I prefer to steam the vegetables and serve them with the shanks. For this version I used my Chilli Paste, however fresh chillies or dried chilli flakes work just as well. As with all dishes containing chilli use less to start with, taste and add more as needed or suits your taste.

When I am planning to freeze them I prefer to have the sauce reduced in volume so that it uses less freezer space.  Sometimes I vacuum seal them, mostly I put two serves into a container. If placing two or more together alternate the thick and thin thinds so that they fit into the container more easily.

The gremolata adds a freshness to the finished shanks, omit the chilli if you do not like too much chilli in your food.

Red Wine and Tomato Lamb Shanks
with Chilli Gremolata
6 lamb shanks
2 onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 bay leaf
1 large can diced tomatoes
1 bottle tomato puree/Passata sauce
1 cup red wine
Additional wine/stock /water
2 tablespoons Chilli Paste or 2-3 birdseye chillies, finely chopped or a generous pinch of dried chilli flakes.
Freshly ground black pepper

Chilli Gremolata
1-Birds eye chilli, thinly sliced
Finely grated zest of a large lemon
1-2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Heat oil in a large pan, add lamb shanks and brown all over. Add diced onions, garlic and if using the chillies/chilli paste /dried chilli. Cook for a further minute or so, stirring to prevent the onions and garlic from burning.

Add wine, tomato puree, chopped tomatoes and bay leaf.  I like to have the shanks at least half covered with the liquid and then turn them over during the cooking process. Add water or stock if necessary. Cover and cook on a low heat or in 150 deg C oven for a couple of hours or until meat is tender but not falling off the bones.  Check during cooking and add more water or stock as needed.

Remove shanks from the pan and keep warm. Reduce the liquid until it forms a thick sauce, taste and adjust flavour with freshly ground black pepper.

Chilli Gremolata

Combine ingredients and mix well. Scatter a small amount over each shank when served

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