Monday, April 20, 2009

On Tonight's Menu - Lamb!

It's that time again, time for a recipe. Don't have too many pictures for the different steps because I had a lot of things going on and in my hurried state I kept forgetting to snap pictures. After all, this was a mostly made up recipe as I went along. Hopefully you can get the idea from what I do have below. Bon Appetit!

Menu: Pan Braised Balsamic Lamb Shank with a cool Pasta Salad and roasted Zucchini

First step was to heat a pan over medium-high heat and coat the bottom with some Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Once heated I added the Lamb Shanks to sear on each side.

Once the shank was successfully seared I took them out and put them on a plate, covered with foil, while I prepped the pan for braising. I added more Olive Oil and some diced sweet onion, Kosher Salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Dropped the heat to medium-low and after the onion was mostly translucent and limp I added some minced garlic and quite a bit of aged balsamic vinegar.

That mixture cooked for a couple of minutes then I added a little more S&P, a little water, some red pepper flakes, oregano, the lamb and a couple sprigs of rosemary.

Now to braise! This was covered and cooked for about an hour and a half, turning every so often.

Once the meat was cooked through it was removed back to the plate with its foil hat. The leftover pan goodness was thickened up a bit for a sauce. Added a bit more water, some flour and a few tablespoons of butter, then whisked like crazy on high heat.

Everything tightened up quite nicely, and I was ready to plate. Here were the side dishes:

Pasta- I cooked some acini di pepe (small peppercorn shaped round pasta) in boiling water, drained and rinsed with cold water to stop the cooking and cool it down. It went into a bowl and was tossed with kosher salt, pepper, lemon zest, fresh diced onion, extra virgin olive oil and some red wine vinegar.

Zucchini- Julienned a couple of zucchini tossed with some olive oil and S&P. Laid them all out on a baking sheet and roasted at around 350 for a bit.

Everything tasted wonderful. My only complaint was that the lamb was not "fall off the bone" tender. This would have been better achieved in a longer oven braising. Unfortunately I do not have a dutch oven (yet) and it would have taken too long in the crock pot. Next time I'll fix this and it will be much better. Still, it was quite delicious.


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