Saturday, January 30, 2016

Blizzard Fare: Baked Lamb Shanks

The Tuesday after Snowzilla 2016, the meat shelves had been picked nearly bare. Happily, I found a couple of lamb shanks - not quite large enough for a Roald Dahl story, but sizeable nonetheless. A few variations on this New York Times recipe resulted in a hearty, delicious meal that was perfect for a snowbound day.

2 T olive oil
2 large lamb shanks (about 3 lbs. total)
1 large onion, sliced
1/2 t ground allspice
1/4 t ground cloves
1 t salt, plus more to taste
1/2 t ground pepper
28 oz can whole tomatoes, chopped
1 t oregano
2 c hot water
14.5 oz can white beans, drained and rinsed

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Put oil in a large baking dish. Add the lamb shanks, turning them to coat them evenly with oil. Bake 30 minutes, turning once.

Combine the onions, allspice, cloves, salt and pepper. Mix well, then spoon the mixture on top of the lamb shanks.

Combine the tomatoes with the oregano. Mix well, then spoon on top of the onion mixture.

Pour the water around the lamb shanks.

Turn the oven to 400 degrees and bake for 1-1/2 hours, or till tender (1-1/2 hours was fine, though it could have gone longer for that falling-off-the-bone texture). If the dish begins to dry out, add more hot water.

Add beans to the juices 10 minutes before the end of cooking time. Mix everything and spoon some sauce over each shank before serving.

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