Lamb shanks braised in porter with fresh thyme

I got a new cookbook from Alberto for my birthday – The Beer and Food Companion, by Stephen Beaumont, which contains both recipes, some of which involve cooking with beer, and recommendations for beers that go well with certain recipes. It’s a lovely book, full of information and so lovely pics of tasty food. I said I’d cook something from it tonight so flicked through and found this. I love a lamb shank and the two hour+ cooking time means that the meat is lovely and tender. I’m not a fan of porter as a drink, but when used in this recipe, in combination with the beef stock, onions and garlic, and the long cooking time, gives a lovely richness to the resultant sauce.

Serves 4

2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 lamb shank per person
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons of minced garlic
225g of onions, chopped
150g of carrot, finely chopped
150g of celery, chopped (as ever, I substituted leek)
150g of tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
180ml of porter
2 bay leaves
300ml of beef stock
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, minced

In a large, heat the olive oil over a medium heat. Season the shanks with salt and pepper and fry in the pan until brown on all sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add the onion, carrot and celery (leek) to the pan and sauté for 3-4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.

Add the tomato and garlic and stir well. Use the porter to deglaze the bottom of the pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any stuck meat. Then add the beef stock, bay leaves, salt and thyme and stir well to combine.

Return the shanks to the pan and bring to the boil.

Once boiling reduce the heat to a low simmer, cover and cook for 2-2½ hours until the lamb is tender and the sauce slightly thickened. Add more stock or beer if the liquid level seems to be getting too low.

Delicious. I served this with mash and sautéed black cabbage. We accompanied it, as per the book’s recommendation, with a rich, malty ale.

P1060930 ed


About neilche

Hi. My name's Neil. I live in Brighton with my flatmate (also Neil) and I work as a Librarian at a local college. I like cooking, eating and socialising with friends. Which is what prompted me to start this blog. I cycle everywhere around town - it helps to work off the calories!
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