Sunday, 2 June 2013

Recipe - Braised Lamb Shanks with Rosemary and White Wine

Anyone who was hoping for a chirpier instalment than last time will be sorely disappointed. (Although stats indicate that y'all love it when I'm miserable.) I have had a god-awful week and this has given me a newfound awe and respect for anyone who's part of the rat race, working the grindstone, generally being a real human adult. I've been working twelve hour days to dig myself out of debt and be able to go on a guilt and stress free holiday. When that happens, I'll really think the abject misery and tiredness that came with this week was all worth it. Unfortunately, that time won't be until September so I've got a lot of waiting to do. In my defence, I'm not being as much of a complaining wimp as I seem. It hasn't been twelve hours of sitting at a desk (although props to anyone who manages to do that) with the occasional opportunity to zone out/have a coffee. It's been twelve hours of patiently explaining rudimentary concepts to children who don't care and don't want you there interspersed with sweaty, slimy tube journeys. (I'm being unfair, only one of the children was that difficult - insisting that a day does not have 24 hours.) The experience was doubly depressing because it served as a constant reminder of what a job as a career tutor would be like: well paid but soul-crushing. I'll try to channel this into making some great applications next week. Also, getting back at nine every day meant that all I had time to do was make my sandwiches for the next day. No special, slow cooked treats for Ari. (My quick subsistence foods were still quite fun though.) That left me craving an indulgent weekend and I was due to be painted again so it seemed like the ideal time for a nice cut of lamb. The weather was all wrong for something as rich and heavy as shanks with dauphinoise but you know, who the hell cares?
Braised lamb shanks
4 small shanks (about 750g total weight), seasoned all over with salt and pepper
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 and a half large onions, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 cloves
3 sprigs rosemary, chopped
400ml wine

Brown the shanks over a high heat in olive oil.
Remove and set aside.
Brown the chopped onion and garlic until very translucent and brown around the edges, about 7 minutes.
Return the shanks the pan.
Add the wine and aromatics and set the alcohol sizzle away for about 3 minutes.
Place in an oven at gas mark 3 for 2 hours until the shanks are tender and falling apart.

Dauphinoise potatoes
2 large potatoes, peeled and finely sliced
150ml double cream
2 cloves garlic, crushed

In a small baking dish, place the potatoes in a layer, seasoning with salt and pepper and pouring over the garlic.
Pour over the cream.

(I actually forgot to season as I went along so I seasoned the cream with salt, pepper and garlic and hoped for the best but this is how I should've done it.)

Serve with something light to counteract the richness - we did steamed carrots and spinach.

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