Turkish Lamb Shanks
Delicate lamb is bathed in aromatic spices, chopped tomatoes, onion and lemon peel, and simmers until meltingly tender.
4 tablespoons peppercorns
4 tablespoons whole cloves
2 tablespoons coriander seed
2 tablespoons cumin seed
2 tablespoons paprika
2 teaspoons ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
4 lamb shanks (12-ounces each)
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 cups seeded and chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Combine peppercorns, cloves, coriander and cumin seed in an electric grinder; grind to a fine powder (see note). Combine mixture with paprika, cardamom, and nutmeg in a small mixing bowl; stir until all ingredients are well-blended; set aside.
- Rinse lamb in running water. Place in a large saucepan or stockpot with water to cover. Add lemon peel; bring to a near-boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, skimming the surface often.
- Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat until a drop of water sizzles in the pan. Add onion; sauté until onion is fragrant and translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add reserved spice mixture and turmeric; cook 1 minute more. Stir in tomatoes, salt and pepper.
- Transfer contents of skillet to lamb saucepan, stir to mix, cover and simmer for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until meat is tender. Remove from pan to a warm plate; cool for about 5 minutes; slice and serve.
Makes 6 servings.
Tip: The spices may also be ground with a mortar and pestle.