November 18, 2022
Braised Lamb Shanks with Dried Persian Limes
“The Persian flavors of the lamb are a different combination for most people. Now that Middle Eastern ingredients are easier to find, it makes this dish more accessible.” — Bonnie Stern.
Yield: Serves 8
- Preheat oven to 350F. Heat olive oil in large Dutch oven set over medium-high heat. Sprinkle meat generously with salt and pepper. In batches, brown shanks well on all sides (do not overcrowd pan). Repeat until all lamb is browned. Set aside.
- Add onions to pot and cook for a few minutes, until wilted. Add chopped Swiss chard stems and cook for a few minutes longer with onions. Add garlic, fenugreek leaves, cumin, allspice and turmeric. Cook for 1 minute, stirring, or until fragrant.
- Add Swiss chard leaves, cilantro, dill and parsley, and cook for about 5 minutes, or until leaves turn dark. Add dried limes, pomegranate molasses, broth, 2 tsp salt and lamb, and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Cover surface with parchment paper, then cover tightly with lid or aluminum foil (I use both because my lid doesn’t fit perfectly). Transfer pot to oven and cook for 1 hour. Then add cooked chickpeas and cook for 60 to 90 minutes longer, or until lamb is very tender and falling off the bones. The herbs and greens will be dark green and a little mushy — perfect.
- Sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and chopped fresh herbs. Serve with rice or mashed potatoes.
Note: If your lamb shanks are too large for a single serving, once they are tender, remove the meat in chunks from the bone and serve it boneless. Dried Persian limes are available at any Middle Eastern market or spice shop. In Toronto, I buy them at Ararat. They can also be ground up and used as a seasoning.
Recipe excerpted from Don’t Worry, Just Cook by Bonnie Stern and Anna Rupert, published by Appetite by Random House, an imprint of Penguin Random House Canada. ©2022 Bonnie Stern Cooking Schools and Anna Rupert. Food photography by Tyler Anderson. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.