Three ways with lamb shanks

Moroccan  Lamb Shank Tagine
Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine Photo: Danielle Colley

I remember the first time someone asked me if I was following the ‘slow food’ revolution. I had no idea what he was talking about.

He went on to talk about from ‘paddock to plate’, and from ‘hoof to head’ eating and being sure that all of your ingredients were ethically sourced.

Being as the fast food thing is not really a thing in my house slow cooking is hardly a revolution, but every winter I look forward to hearty braises and stews.

Sticky Asian Shanks
Sticky Asian Shanks Photo: Danielle Colley

For me winter is all about slow food. Throwing cheaper cuts of meat in the oven and ignoring it for a few hours while the sinews break down and flavor the entire dish and the house simply hums with delicious smells that tantalise the family’s taste buds, driving them wild for dinner.

I still have no idea if that’s what he was talking about, but once you try these shanks on for size you may want to shout ‘Viva la revolution!’ from the rooftops.

Just go with it. Don’t try to fight it.

The best way to buy your shanks is ‘Frenched ‘. You can ask your butcher to do this. It is simply cutting off the chunky end bone and trimming the fat and sinew.

If they are not trimmed when you get them make an incision into the muscle casing and slide your finger underneath and cut with the knife as you go.

Cut off excess fat too while you’re at it.

If forced to choose which of these shanks was the finest, I simply could not.

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You just be the judge! 

Moroccan Lamb Shank Tagine

With exotic Moroccan spices gently flavoring your lamb shanks, this is a perfect winter warmer. The joy of this is it’s even better the second day… If there’s any left over. You can add some prunes or dates, almonds or pistachios, and subtly alter the flavor whilst staying distinctly North African. Don’t be afraid to play with it!

French Style Lamb Shanks with Braised Lentils
French Style Lamb Shanks with Braised Lentils Photo: Danielle Colley

Sticky Asian Shanks

Sweet and sticky, bursting with flavor, these are just begging for you to pick up the bone for a gnaw.
The mix of ginger with the sweet plum sauce and tangy hoisin sauce would also be fabulous with pork ribs if you wanted to mix it up.

French Style Lamb Shanks with Braised Lentils

Rich and hearty with vegetables and lentils, this is a true one pot wonder. Serving this with a vegetable mash ups the vegetable intake whilst keeping the wintery joy of a braise served with mash. You can use potato if you prefer.

Danielle is a writer, a mother, a photographer, a lover of great food, and a drinker of much wine. Her third cook book, Cook Once Feed All,  takes the guess work out of feeding your family with recipes that the whole family will enjoy together; from small fries to big mouths. You can find more of Danielle’s fabulous recipes on her blog Keeping Up With The Holsbys, or purchase Cook Once Feed All online now.