I have cooking FOMO (fear of missing out). On Friday my colleague mentioned that when things settled down a bit at work, he was going to cook some lamb shank. So on Friday after work, I was picking up some groceries from SA’s favorite premium grocer, Woolworths & I walked pass some lamb shank at the butcher’s counter. I decided there and then, I am going to cook them free range lamb shanks for the first time in my life this very weekend.
I had come across a number of recipes on how to cook lamb shank. I knew I would want something different to the usual red wine slow cooked versions I had seen. I’d also come across some Indian and Moroccan recipes and was inspired by the familiar spices. I naturally combined them to create a dish I am definitely adding to my “ways to wow” arsenal of recipes.
2 front leg lamb shanks
Lamb shank coat:
1 heap tbsp of flour
1 tsp fine salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp dried herbs
1 tsp smoked chilli flakes
Mix all the ingredients above together. Dip the lamb in the flour coat. Heat a pan with a tablespoon of canola oil to medium to high heat. Dust off the lamb shanks and lighly seal and brown the shanks for 1.5 minutes on each side. Then set aside.
1/2 white onion sliced
2 whole star anise
3 cardamom pods
Finely sliced root ginger from one ‘arm’ of ginger
1 tsp of crushed garlic
2 tsp of garlic and ginger paste
Add some oil to a sauce pan. Add the above ingredients to it, slightly browning the onions.
Thereafter add the following ingredients:
1 tsp cumin (jeera) powder
1 tsp cardamom (elachi) powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp turmeric (hardi) powder
1 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp ginger powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1 small lemon zest and juice
Stir this into the onions and sauté for 2 minutes on medium heat.
(Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees celsius)
1/3 cup jam tomatoes
1/3 cup of yoghurt raita
1 tbsp of tomato paste
Salt to taste
A handful of chopped fresh coriander
1 tablespoon of the leftover flour from the coat above mixed into 50ml of milk
1 tablespoon of pickled ginger (I used a ginger and pineapple jam)
Stir this into a sauce for 5 minutes, adding a 1/4 cup of water if it becomes to too thick. It is meant to cook through and thicken in the oven.
You can substitute the flour & milk with cream or coconut cream too.
Coat an oven dish with a lid or a tajine pot with spray and cook to avoid the sauce and lamb shanks getting stuck & burnt. Add the 2 shanks and pour the sauce over. Make sure you have enough sauce to just cover the shanks. Top with a bit of chopped coriander and any lemon zest if you wish. Cover with the lid.
Turn the oven down to 150 degrees celsius. Pop the dish in the oven. After an hour, turn down the heat to 120 degrees celsius. Leave for another 45 minutes. Then turn the heat back up to 180 degrees celsius for 15 minutes before serving. When you take it out the oven you should be able to see the bone exposed as if it was frenched by the butcher before hand.
I served the lamb shank with ginger & Dijon mustard sweet potato mash.