Succulent Lamb Shanks

Yield: 8 servings
  • 4 lamb foreshanks (about 1 pound each)
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, cut in half lengthwise and slivered
  • 1 cup defatted beef broth, or canned low-sodium beef stock
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 4 large cloves garlic, lightly crushed
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (each 3 inches long)
  • 4 fresh sage leaves
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1 cup ripe plum tomato, seeded and coarsley chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups dried prunes
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Sprinkle the lamb shanks all over with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large heavy casserole over medium heat. Add the lamb shanks, 2 at a time, and sauté until well browned, about 8 minutes per side. Remove the lamb and pour off the fat. Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the casserole and place over low heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 10 minutes.

Return the lamb shanks to the casserole. Add beef broth, red wine, honey, garlic, cinnamon sticks, sage and cloves. Bring to a boil. Cover the casserole and bake until meat is tender, about 1 hour.

Stir in the chopped tomatoes and prunes and cook uncovered until both are blended into the sauce, about 45 minutes longer. Before serving, stir in the fresh mint.

Adapted from "The USA Cookbook" by Sheila Lukins.


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Published: 1999