Lamb Shanks Braised in Red Wine with Sweet Potato Mash

This is a wonderful winter meal and great for entertaining as you can just leave it cooking away in the oven whilst you have a glass of wine with your family and friends.

Serves 4

4 lamb shanks – trim off any fat if you can

1 onion finely chopped

2 cloves garlic crushed

several good sprigs fresh rosemary

300ml lamb stock

300ml red wine

400g or 14oz tin chopped tomatoes

salt and pepper

1 tablespoon cornflour mixed with a little water

For the mash:

4  medium-sized sweet pototoes peeled and chopped into cubes

salt and pepper

Pre-heat oven to 160 fan forced.

Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and spray with oil. Add the onions and garlic and fry for a few minutes until soft.

Place the shanks into a large casserole dish – I usually use a cast iron casserole with a lid.

Mix the stock, wine and tinned tomatoes together and then add the cooked onion and garlic and the pieces of rosemary. Season with salt and pepper. Pour this over the lamb shanks.

Cover and place in the oven. I usually check on the shanks every half an hour or so to turn them in the sauce to ensure they don’t dry out.

The shanks need to be in the oven for at least 2 hours. An extra hour wouldn’t hurt though! The meat needs to be falling off the bone and melt-in-you-mouth tender.

The mash only takes about 10-15 minutes to make. Simply cover the sweet potatoes with water and bring to the boil then let them simmer until tender. Drain well, then mash and season with salt and pepper (add some butter here if you wish but I don’t think it needs it).

Once you are ready to serve, remove the shanks from the sauce and cover them with foil to keep warm.

If using cast iron casserole dish, place it with the gravy on the hob (if using a ceramic dish, pour the gravy into a saucepan). Bring the gravy to a simmer and add the cornflour stirring constantly to thicken. If the gravy is too thick, just add a little water. Have a taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Now divide the mash onto four plates or deep dinner plates. Place a lamb shank on the top of each and then drizzle the gravy over and around the plate or dish. Serve with a side dish of green beans if desired. Delicious!

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