Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Braised Lamb Shanks with Polenta

Since moving to Virginia and falling in love with Wegman's, which is such a wonderful grocery store, with so many unique items, we've incorporated a few lamb recipes into our repertoire.

Last May, Brent and I celebrated 11 years of marriage at the Morrison House Grill, with their tasting menu which was wonderful. We were served a delicious lamb shank dish that we quickly decided we would try to reinterpret at home.

We found a recipe online at Epicurious and decided to serve it atop polenta. This recipe involves a lot of cooking time but isn't difficult. And the time involved yields such tender, fall off the bone, meat.

I only wish lamb shanks were less costly...I would add them to our meal plan more often!

Braised Lamb Shanks with Polenta

  • 6 lamb shanks (about 5 pounds total)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, peeled, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
  • 10 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bottle dry red wine
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes with juices
  • 1 14 1/2-oz can low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 14 1/2-oz can beef broth
  • 5 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons lemon peel, grated

1 tube of precooked polenta 
1/2 cup milk

1. Sprinkle shanks with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a heavy dutch oven over medium-high heat. 

2. Working in batches, add lamb shanks to the dutch oven and cook until brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer shanks to a bowl.

3. Add onions, carrots and garlic to dutch oven and sauté until golden, about 10 minutes. Stir in all remaining ingredients. Return lamb shanks to pot, pressing them down to submerge. 

4. Bring liquids to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Simmer until meat is tender, about 2 hours.

5. Uncover dutch oven; simmer until meat is very tender, about 30 minutes longer.

6. Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, mash the polenta and then warm polenta with milk over low heat until warmed and slightly spoonable.

6. Transfer lamb shanks to a serving platter and tent with foil. Boil juices in pot until thickened, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. 

7. Divide polenta among plates, topping with one lamb shank and spooning sauce over all.

We usually only buy four lamb shanks, which leaves us with quite a bit of leftover sauce. The last time we made this, I froze the leftover sauce. A quick thaw and the addition of stew meat created a simple and delicious beef stew.


Tara Elias said...

Oh my goodness that looks delicious. Thanks for sharing!

Merrick Dunphy said...


Keshet said...

Yum, that looks delicious!

Anonymous said...

Oh how I love your lamb shanks! They are truly, wonderfully delicious.


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