My family loves lamb. Lamb chops, rack of lamb, lamb kabobs, leg of lamb, lamb shanks and even lamb kidneys. (I must post my recipe for the kidneys soon...my kids used to love them over toast for breakfast.) And my herbed leg of lamb made it into our Junior League Cookbook, Savor the Moment.
But our favorite winter lamb dish has always been Lamb Shanks in Red Wine. I found the recipe years ago in one of the 1959 Gourmet cookbooks...there are two volumes. My mother gave them to me as a gift and I use recipes from each frequently, still. Sadly, Volume II doesn't seem to be available on Amazon any longer. I remember one of the volumes had the first recipe for quiche Lorraine I ever saw....and made. And their photo of croquembouche was so gorgeous that I made it immediately and haven't made one since. Have you noticed how few of the really old cookbooks have photos? We are so into photos and presentation these days.
Anyway, we had some really cold weather in Florida over the holidays (well, cold for us) so one night my kids asked me to make the lamb shank dish. I'd forgotten the marvelous fragrance while cooking and my mouth was watering by the time it was done. I added some fennel to the dish and left the carrots and celery in bigger chunks so I didn't have to make a separate veggie. Then served some noodles with it. It's a lovely rich and filling dish and the meat just falls off the bone. And be sure to use a good red wine...one that you would be happy drinking with your dinner.
Lamb Shanks in Red Wine
Adapted From The Gourmet Cookbook
6 lamb shanks
salt and pepper
3 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, split
2 Tablespoons warm brandy
3 cups red wine
3 cups water
1/2 cup diced carrots ( I cut the carrots in 3 inch pieces)
1 fennel bulb, quartered
1/2 cup diced celery (I cut the celery in 3 inch chunks)
1 cup chopped onion
1 bay leaf
P.S. I have a guest post up over at Lazaro Cooks! Be sure to check it out.