One Pot Wonder – Braised Lamb with Apricots and Rosemary

by Jakob Anderson, Food Writer

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The lamb shank is a beautiful cut of meat. Prepared the correct way, it has the potential to transform into a rich, intense and heart-warming pleasure. This cut is also an outstanding choice for those who are new to lamb or claim they don’t like its gamey flavor. This dish is very simple to prepare and begs to be paired with a strong wheat beer. The dried apricots provide a tart kick and morph into tiny umami bombs [umami is increasingly recognized as the fifth taste, which can be translated into “pleasant savory”]. Get this in the oven early and begin your epic drinking voyage!

Braised Lamb Shanks with Apricots and Rosemary

Tasty apricots

Tasty apricots

4 lamb shanks

2 onions, roughly chopped

2 large carrots, rough chopped

6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

8-10 fingerling potatoes, halved

1 butternut squash, halved and seeded

10 dried apricots, unsweetened

6 sprigs rosemary

1L chicken stock

1 bottle wheat beer

2 Tbsp tomato paste

Salt and pepper to taste

Wheat beer is a key ingredient

Wheat beer is a key ingredient

Set oven to 250ºF. Season lamb shanks with salt and pepper. In large ovenproof pot, sear shanks on all sides. Remove meat and add onions, carrots, garlic and apricots. Once they begin to stick to bottom, add tomato purée and scrape the bottom of pan. Add beer and let reduce by half. Add shanks, squash (squash pieces are supposed to be that large; we will be using them later), stock, and rosemary. Bring to a boil, cover and then place in the oven for 5-6 hours. Once cooked, the meat on the shanks should have shrunk right off the bone. Remove squash and place in blender with a small amount of cooking liquid. Purée until smooth (you can just mash them up roughly in a bowl if you would like). Serve shanks with vegetables and apricots atop the squash purée.