Anytime the weather cools down (which isn’t often this time of year), I crave lamb shanks. Funny thing is… I STRONGLY disliked shanks as a kid. Dislike to the point that I would just eat the sides for dinner when my mom made shanks. Now, I LOVE them! Some may say it’s an acquired taste, but really I think I was missing out on something wonderful the entire time. If it isn’t cool where you are, save this for a rainy day… you won’t regret it!
Ground black pepper
6 CO lamb shanks
4 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces
1 lb baby potatoes, scrubbed
2 cups dry red wine
3 cups lamb broth (reserved from boiling)
2 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes in olive oil and garlic
1 cup spaghetti sauce (we use regular Classico)
4 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cinnamon sticks
Preheat oven to 325°F. In a small bowl, add all the spice ingredients and mix to combine. Set aside.
In a large pot, place lamb shanks. Cover with water. Season with salt and bring to a low boil. Boil for one hour.
While shanks boil, in a large Dutch oven pot, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrots and potatoes. Sauté for 5-7 minutes or until vegetables gain some color. Add red wine, scraping brown bits off of pan. Cook to reduce wine a bit. Add tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, cinnamon sticks and thyme. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.
Remove shanks from lamb broth. Strain broth. Add 3 cups lamb broth to tomato mixture, stir to combine. Rub remaining olive on shanks and season with spice mixture. Place lamb shanks in tomato/broth mixture.
Cover pot and transfer to the oven. Cook in oven for 2.5-3 hours, checking periodically in case more liquid is needed. Liquid will reduce to about ⅓ of what was there when started.
Serve shanks hot with side of orzo and veggies/salad.