Lamb Shank Tagine
This is ideal entertaining food, as it can either be prepared in advance or it will sit patiently in the oven while you assemble the rest of the meal. It also freezes well. Saffron adds an earthy flavour and golden colour to the dish, but if you don’t have it, leave it out. And if you are being very low-carb, leave the prunes out.
6 lamb shanks, approx. 350–400g
4 tablespoons dripping, lard or extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely sliced into half moons
3 fat garlic cloves, lightly crushed
1 leek, finely chopped
6 prunes, pitted (optional)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 heaped teaspoon ground turmeric
1 heaped teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon saffron strands (optional)
2.5 litres (4. pints) hot meat or chicken stock or hot water
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 170C/150C fan/340F/gas mark 3.
Season the lamb shanks with a teaspoon of salt.
Heat the fat in a very large ovenproof saucepan or casserole dish and brown the lamb shanks. It will take around 30 minutes to get them really brown on all sides and on each flat end; keep turning them as each side browns.
Use tongs to remove the shanks from the pan and set aside in another dish or bowl. If there is a lot of fat, pour most of this away, but leave enough in the pan to fry the vegetables.
Add the onion, garlic and leek to the same pan and sweat them over a medium heat for 7–10 minutes or until the vegetables are translucent.
Return the lamb shanks to the casserole dish and add the remaining ingredients. Season with another teaspoon of salt and some pepper and bring to the boil. Push the lamb shanks under the surface of the liquid.
Cover with a lid or tightly with foil (or transfer to a tagine)and cook in the oven for about 2. hours or until the meat falls from the bone.
Scatter with the coriander sprigs and serve with cauliflower couscous.
Per serving 5.8g carbs, 1.4g fibre, 50g protein, 32g fat, 515kcal