Lamb Shanks with Figs and Honey

Last night was Valentines day and I hope you spent it with the one you love. I have posted several suggestions for Valentines day dishes which I think are excellent choices to make for that special someone in your life, but in the end we chose to have a recipe which I haven’t written about yet. We had a really nice Dinner last night and this time I can’t take any credit as it was cooked by the Wonderful Hana from a Nigella Lawson recipe.

It can sometimes be difficult to think of a recipe when its for a special occasion, or when you want something completely different. When inspiration is short I can often find myself going back to the same standby meals. So for those days when you want something different, something new, it is a good idea to have a look through your cookery books and find a recipe you haven’t made yet. One of our favourite go-to cookery books is Feast by Nigella Lawson. I wrote about a special Sunday lunch Hana cooked for us a couple of weeks ago which featured recipes from it. We had Spaghetti Carbonara followed by Passion Fruit Jelly with Syllabub. It lived up to its name, in that it was a total Feast! Again this dish is a real Feast. It feels like a very old fashioned traditional winter meal with strong, deep, warming flavours. I could imagine sitting in a castle in olden times with a chunk on Lamb on the bone. The Gravy is intense, bold and packs a big punch. This is not a light meal. Nor is it quick to make and is even best made a day in advance (as Hana did) and left to cool overnight before reheating when your ready to eat it.

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Cover of Feast: Food to Celebrate Life

Preparation time, 30mins+

Cooking time, 2-3hrs + cooling over night

Ingredients for 2

2 Lamb Shanks or a Large Lamb Shoulder Shank of about 1kg (including bone weight) cut into big pieces.

4tbsp Olive Oil
3 Onions
2 Cloves of Garlic
2tsp Dried Rosemary
2tsp Dried Thyme
4 Sweet Potatoes
300g Dried Figs
1tsp Mixed Spice
1 Cinnamon Stick
40ml Runny Honey
1/2 Bottle Red Wine
200-400ml Water


Chop the Onions and Garlic and Peal the Sweet Potato. Boil the Sweet Potato till very soft then drain and mash. Heat the Olive Oil in a very large Saucepan or Casserole which will be big enough to hold the whole stew. Brown the Lamb in the Oil turning occasionally to get an even colour. Remove from the pan.

Add the Chopped Onion, Garlic Rosemary and Thyme to the Pan and soften the Onion. Crumble in the Cinnamon Stick, Honey, Red Wine and water. Stir through the Mashed Sweet Potato. Bring to the boil and add the Lamb Shanks back to the pan. Now reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for around 1hr 30mins to 2hrs over a low heat.

This is when you can remove it from the heat and cool. Leave it to cool overnight, once it has cooled it may have a layer of fat on the top which you will need to skim off.

The next day reheat for around 30-40 minutes over a gentle heat till the Lamb is warmed through.

Hana served it with Rice and Purple Sprouting Broccoli and a big glass of Red Wine, the same as used the Gravy-sauce.


One response to “Lamb Shanks with Figs and Honey

  1. Pingback: Valentines day recipes and treats | russellskitchen·

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