Braised Lamb Shanks with Gremolata

These cold winter nights demand hearty comfort food
Photo courtesy of Angeline.

Alex Harrell’s recipe for Braised Lamb Shanks serves the tender hind shanks atop a generous pillow of roasted cauliflower and fregola pasta. A dollop of Citrus Gremolata gives the dish an extra bit of zing.

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6 servings

    Lamb Shanks
  • 6 Lamb Hind Shanks (about 1 pound each), trimmed of excess fat and sinew,Lamb Braising Liquid (recipe follows),Salt and Pepper to taste,Citrus Gremolata (recipe follows)
  • Braising Liquid
  • 1 quart chopped onion
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 cups peeled and chopped carrot
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 6 sprigs rosemary
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1½ gallons lamb, beef or veal stock
  • 2 ounces sorghum,2 tablespoons fermented chili paste
  • Roasted Cauliflower and Kale
  • 1 large head cauliflower, trimmed into florets
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil,Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 cups kale, washed and torn into bite pieces
  • 3 cups fregola pasta, cooked
  • 1 cup lamb braising liquid
  • Citrus Gremolata|
  • ⅓ cup panko breadcrumbs, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • ½ tablespoons orange zest
  • 1½ teaspoons minced garlic
  • Pinch salt

Lamb Shanks

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Season lamb shanks liberally with salt and pepper.
  3. In large dutch oven, brown shanks over medium high heat on all sides.
  4. Pour lamb braising liquid over shanks and cover with lid.
  5. Cook lamb shanks in oven until tender, about 2 hours. Check for tenderness after 1½ hours.
  6. Once shanks have cooked until tender, allow to rest in cooking liquid for 1 hour.
  7. To serve, warm lamb shanks in braising liquid in 350 degree oven.
  8. Divide kale and fregola between 6 large bowls. Add 1 shank to each bowl.
  9. Sprinkle Citrus Gremolata on top of each shank.
  10. Serve immediately.

Braising Liquid

  1. In very large pot, caramelize onions, celery and carrots in olive oil over high heat. Once caramelized, add garlic and aromatics.
  2. Deglaze with red wine and cook until wine has reduced by ⅔.
  3. Add stock, sorghum, chili paste and bring to simmer.
  4. Simmer for 20 minutes.

Roasted Cauliflower and Kale

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In medium-sized bowl, toss cauliflower florets in olive oil and salt and pepper.
  3. Add seasoned cauliflower to baking sheet, roast until browned, about 15 minutes.
  4. In large sauté pan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add kale. Cook until wilted, approximately 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add cooked fregola and roasted cauliflower, and gently toss until mixed with kale. Season with salt and pepper, and add lamb braising liquid.

Citrus Gremolata

  1.  In medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Gently mix until well-combined.
  • From Chef Alex Harrell of Angeline in New Orleans, Louisiana

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