Port Braised Lamb Shanks
- 4 lamb shanks , approx 400g/13oz each (Note 1)
- Salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp olive oil , separated
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 1 onion , finely chopped (white, brown, yellow)
- 1 celery stalk , finely chopped (optional, but recommended)
- 1 carrot , finely chopped (optional, but recommended)
- 3 tbsp / 1/4 cup flour (35g)
- 2 cups / 500 ml beef broth (liquid beef stock) (or sub with chicken broth)
- 3 cups / 750 ml port (Note 2)
- 1 1/2 cups / 375ml red wine , or more beef broth (Note 3)
- 3 tbsp / 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 5 sprigs thyme or 2 tsp dried thyme
- 3 dried bay leaves (or 5 fresh)
- 4 stalks fresh parsley (optional)
- Fresh parsley , finely chopped
Season lamb with salt and pepper.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a dutch oven or large heavy based pot over high heat. Add 2 lamb shanks and cook, turning, until browned (see photo). Remove then repeat with remaining lamb.
Turn heat down to medium. Add remaining 1 tbsp oil, garlic, onion, carrot and celery. Sauté for 5 minutes until onion is softened.
Add flour. Mix into onion mixture.
Add remaining ingredients. Mix – lumps are ok, they will dissolve while cooking.
Add lamb back in – the meat should be mostly submerged. Bring to simmer, then turn heat down to medium low and cover with lid.
Simmer for 2 hours (Note 4) then remove lid and simmer for 30 minutes.
Remove lamb into a bowl.
Optional: Strain sauce in dutch oven into a bowl. Use spoon to press into onion etc to squeeze out all the flavourful liquid. Pour sauce into dutch oven. (Note 5)
Skim excess fat off sauce.
Increase heat to medium high and reduce liquid by half or until it thickens to a syrup consistency.
Return lamb shanks and juices pooled in the bowl into sauce to reheat, then serve with creamy mashed potato, garnished with parsley.