Delicious herb and horseradish crusted braised lamb shanks
There is nothing more comforting than cooking at home on a cold winter's night to conjure the aromas and warmth of braised lamb from the oven.
The key to successful braising is in the browning of the meats and vegetables (i.e. cooking “low and slow”). Transforming an otherwise tough cut of meat into something flavourful and fall-off-the-bone tender is easier than you might think.
Lamb shanks can be purchased at most grocery stores or from your local butcher. They are best served on the bone, alongside your favorite mashed potato, risotto or polenta recipe.
Pre-heat oven: 350°F Yield: 2 Portions
- Frying pan with lid (deep enough to hold shanks)
- Small pot
• 2 tsp. + 1 tsp. olive oil
• 2 lamb shanks (approx. 500 gr. each), trimmed of fat
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1 sprig fresh rosemary, chopped or
½ tsp. dried
• Kosher salt and black pepper
• 1 onion, diced
• ½ carrot, diced
• 1 stick celery, diced
• 2 tsp. tomato paste
• 3 cups low sodium beef broth
• 1 bay leaf
• 2 tsp. cornstarch, mixed with 2 tsp. cold water
• 2 tsp. grainy mustard
• 1 tsp. horseradish
• 2 tbsp. breadcrumbs
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• 1 tbsp. parsley, minced
• ½ tsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
• 1 tbsp. olive oil
- Rub minced garlic and rosemary all over the lamb, season with salt and pepper and reserve.
- In a frying pan, heat 2 tsp. oil then add vegetables. Fry over medium heat for 8-10 mins. to soften and develop brown colour. Add tomato paste near end and fry for another minute until it darkens slightly. Set browned vegetables aside.
- In the same pan, add 1 tsp. oil over medium heat. Add the seasoned lamb shanks and sear on both sides (about 3-4 mins. per side) until browned. Return browned vegetables to pan and place lamb on top.
- Add the broth and bay leaf (broth should cover about 2/3 of shank). Bring to a gentle boil, then cover and place in oven for 1 hour 45 mins. or until the shanks are tender.
- Remove cooked shanks from pan and strain the braising liquid into a small pot, removing the vegetables. Skim any oil from the surface of the cooking liquid. Spread mustard and horseradish on the meatiest side of lamb shank.
- Mix remaining ingredients in a small bowl, careful not to add too much oil. Place this on lamb then bake for an additional 15 mins. until light golden brown/crispy.
- Bring cooking liquid to a boil then turn down to a simmer (approx. 10 mins.). Reduce by half, adding cornstarch/water mix and stir to thicken. Sauce will coat the back of a spoon and will be dark, shiny and the consistency of 35% cream. Check seasoning (be careful not to let the sauce over simmer or else it will become too strong).
- Serve lamb and vegetables together, along with a starch of your choice.
Tip: When lamb is done, check for tenderness by testing the meat. It should shrink and fall off of the bone with little resistance.
A graduate of Fanshawe's Cook II Apprentice program, Chef Patrick Hersey worked in local fine dining, hotel and golf course restaurants before becoming faculty and coordinator of the Culinary Skills program 12 years ago. He is inspired by classical cuisine and the students he teaches, learning from each other to bring energy and creativity to the plate.