You will need to plan ahead to make these delectable lamb shanks, but the results are so worth it. When marinating overnight in a Persian-inspired combination of spices, the lamb takes on a whole new level of flavor. You can even make the dish up to 2 days ahead of time – just reheat and serve. This certainly is a company-worthy dish that is so easy to reheat and serve on the day of your dinner party.
Doesn’t this just make your mouth water?
Braised Lamb Shanks
- 4 meaty lamb shanks, preferably hind shanks, trimmed about 4 1/2 lbs
- Kosher salt
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground cardamom
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tsp turmeric
- Vegetable oil
- 4 tsp crumbled saffron
- 2 limes, zest and juice of
- 1 large onion roughly chopped
- 1 orange, zest of
- 3 fresh thyme sprigs
- 2 bay leaves
- 6 cups hot chicken broth or water
- 2 tbsp coarsely chopped parsley
- 2 tbsp coarsely chopped dill
- Season shanks with salt. In a small bowl, combine cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, black pepper and turmeric. Sprinkle mixture over shanks and rub in. Wrap shanks in plastic wrap and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.
- In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add 1/2 inch of oil and heat until shimmering. Working in batches, add lamb shanks and cook, turning frequently, 5 minutes or until browned all over. Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining shanks.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine saffron, lime juice and 1/2 cup warm water. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Discard all but 2 tbsp oil from the Dutch oven. Over medium heat add onion and cook, stirring often, 7 to 9 minutes or until softened and lightly browned. Season onion with salt. Stir in zest of 1 lime, orange zest, thyme. bay leaves and saffron mixture. Arrange shanks in the Dutch oven and pour in broth. Heating until boiling.
- Cover pot and bake for about 1 1/2 hours or until an instant-read thermometer registers 160° when inserted into the thickest part of the shank for medium and meat is beginning to fall off the bone.
- Transfer shanks to a large shallow dish and cover with foil. Strain liquid through a fine-mesh sieve into a small saucepan. Discard onions, thyme and bay leaves. Skim fat from liquids. Season to taste with salt. Cook juices over medium heat until warmed through.
- Meanwhile, remove lamb from bones and break into large chunks. Discard bones. Transfer lamb to individual wide serving bowls. Ladle juices into bowls. Serve garnished with parsley and dill.