As a child, once in a blue moon mum would find some fresh & tender lamb shanks at the market and decide to make what I would reminisce as a hearty-wholesome family stew.
The fresh flavours of beans, tomatoes, rosemary & thyme would fill the house with a smell so rich, "The Sultan of Brunei would pay top dollar!" as dad would say.
In essence, it's not a hard dish to make, but it does take a lot of time prepping & cleaning as it can be a messy process.
Alot of the ingredients are of western origins, which may be slightly difficult to find in more remote areas of Asia, but if you have access to it, I would highly recommend trying this at least once and let your tastebuds decide what's best for you!
As a stew, this is best left cooked over a perioud of at least 2 hours, preferably 3 hours if time permits, to really let the mixture of flavours really soak into the sauce.
But to seal the meaty flavours in the shanks, we first fry the lamb with a coating of all-purpose flour to keep the richness in tact.
Once all the mixture is added, the sauce will begin to simmer and turn bright red. Oils will start surfacing as the lamb shanks begin to stew into tenderness.
Remember to leave the oils stewing as this is the key to the richness of the flavours. Upon completion, you may choose to remove the oils as preferred.
OPTIONAL: If you are prepping this in advance, marinading the lamb shanks the night before with red wine & herbs will really allow flavours to soak into the meat.
Lamb Shanks in Mixed Bean & Tomato Stew
AUTHOR: Tish Tambakau
PREP TIME: 1 hour
COOK TIME: 2.5 hours
TOTAL TIME: 3.5 hour
4 lamb shanks
2 celery sticks, diced
1 large carrot, diced
1 large onion, diced
4 garlic cloves
Approx. 1/2 cup of normal all purpose flour
1 XL crushed canned tomatoes / or 2-3 small ones
1 cup Red Wine
3-4 cups chicken stock (powder/cubes/packet)
2 cans Mixed Beans
2 sprigs Fresh Rosemary
5 sprigs Fresh Thyme
2 dried Bay leaves
Salt and Pepper
Marinade shanks overnight or at least hour prior with red wine, garlic, herbs.
First, wash the shanks. Pat dry with paper towel.
Then, place flour on a large flat tray or plate. Season flour with S&P. Then coat the lamb shanks all over.
Heat oil in large pan, approx 4 tbsp or enough to fry the shanks in. Once hot, place lamb shanks in to seal the meat and juices in. Approx 5 mins across all sides. Remove shanks and place aside.
Discard oil from pan if oil is dirty, then add new oil, approx 2 tbsp. Once hot, fry onion, celery and carrots till soften. Then add in chopped garlic and fry for another 1-2 mins.
Pour wine in and let simmer to burn off alcohol. Approx 5 mins.
Then add the shanks back in, along with canned tomatoes, chicken stock and herbs. Mix and make sure it covers all meat surfaces.
Bring to a boil and turn down the heat to simmer, cook for 2 hours or until tender.
30 mins before serving, add in canned beans. Mix well.
Shanks are ready to serve when tender. Enjoy!