Lamb Shanks w/ Herbes de Provence

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Although Corked & Forked by Keith Wallace lists this recipe under the “Winter” section (not surprising as it is, after all, braised meat), we thought it’d make an interesting late-spring alternative to lamb roast (a popular choice at Easter, no?) Though it is certainly a hearty dish, the sauce is outstanding and this is one of my favorite cuts of lamb when slow-cooked to perfection.

To go with this recipe, Wallace suggests a Pinot Noir from the Eola-Amity Hills region of Oregon, which he calls “one of the greatest wines produced in America”. Interestingly enough, this is the pairing that Wallace gets most excited about in the entire book (each recipe has a pairing), calling it “so beautiful that your tongue may sprout wings and fly to heaven”. We tried 2008 Stangeland Pinot Noir Vermeer Vineyard, the only Eola-Amity Pinot we could find at nearby state stores, but unfortunately it was sub-par (the winemaker was quite heavy-handed with the oak), so there were no tongue wings for us.

Braised Lamb Shank with Herbes de Provence
(serves 6)

6 lamb shanks
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 spanish onions (about 2 cups), chopped
3 large carrots (about 2 cups), peeled and cut into 1/4-inch rounds
10 garlic cloves, minced
1 bottle red wine, preperably a cotes du rhone
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, with juice
2 (10.5-ounce) cans beef stock
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried herbes de provence

Sprinkle shanks with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a heavy, large pot over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the shanks until they turn brown on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer shanks to a plate and set aside.

Add the onions, carrots, and garlic to the cooking pot and sauté until golden-brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in the wine, tomatoes, and stock and let boil for 5 minutes. Add the Herbes de Provence and the rosemary to the sauce. Return the
shanks to the pot, pressing down firmly to submerge them in the stock. Bring back to a boil for 3 minutes, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer on medium-low heat until meat is tender, about 2 hours.

Remove the lamb, and simmer the sauce about 20 minutes longer on medium-low heat until the sauce has thickened. Return the lamb to the sauce and simmer for another 10 minutes. You can serve immediately, or store in the refrigerator for one or two days. To reheat, return the lamb and the sauce to a pot and reheat over medium heat. Let it simmer slowly for 7 minutes before serving.

Corked and Forked :Four Seasons of Eats and Drinks
By Keith Wallace
Published by Running Press, 2011
Buy on Amazon

Notes:

  • a review copy of this book was provided
  • image via Flickr / Creative Commons (not the actual recipe)

 

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