Lamb Shank and a Stew of Lentils Apricots Almonds and Wild Ramps

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Recipe for Lamb Shank and a Stew of Lentils Apricots Almonds and Wild Ramps. This complex and sophisticated gourmet recipe combines many elements of teste in perfect balance.

Ingredients

  • Marinade:
  • 3/4 cup carrots in thick rounds
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped celery root
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped ginger
  • 1 large leek, split
  • 8 cloves garlic, left whole
  • 2 shallots, roughly cut
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground mace
  • 1/2 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 medium bunch thyme
  • 1 small bunch rosemary
  • 4 cups crushed tomatoes
  • 4 cups dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • Lamb:
  • 4 lamb shanks
  • Marinade (see above)
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed or other neutral vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups water
  • Sauce:
  • strained braising liquid (see above)
  • 3 tablespoons prepared mustard
  • 2 tablespoons honey (eucalyptus if available)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • Topping:
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup apricot almonds (the roasted pits of almonds) available in Middle Eastern Stores or substitute whole roasted almonds
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried homemade bread crumbs
  • 5 sprigs of thyme, picked
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/2 cup pickled ramps
  • 1/3 cup mint, roughly chopped then measured
  • 1/3 cup chopped chives
  • 1/3 cup parsley, roughly chopped then measured
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Directions

  1. Drain the shanks and the marinade vegetables, reserving the liquid. Bring the liquid to a boil in a saucepan, then strain through cheesecloth. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 275°F. Season the shanks with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or braising pan over medium-high heat. Add the shanks and brown on all sides, 8 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  3. Next, caramelize the vegetables, cooking until browned and tender. Add the flour, and mix to coat the vegetables. Deglaze with the boiled marinade liquid, then return the shanks to the pan. Bring to a simmer, cover, and braise in the oven until the lamb is very tender, about 3 1/2 hours. Add water if it has reduced too much. Remove the shanks and cover with tin foil to keep warm. strain the braising liquid through a sieve, pressing the vegetables so that they thicken up the liquid. Degrease and reserve.
  4. Sauce: Heat the braising liquid in a saucepan over low heat. Add the mustard, honey, and butter and beat with an immersion blender (or whisk) until frothy. Add salt, pepper, and finish with pickling juice to taste. beat or whisk again and keep warm.
  5. Topping: Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the almonds, season with salt and pepper, and roast until fragrant. Add the bread crumbs and cook until golden, then add the thyme and a bit more salt and pepper. In another pan, heat the chopped apricots with the pickled ramps over medium heat. Swirl in the butter.
  6. Plating: Place lentil stew in the bottom of four wide soup plates. Place a lamb shank in each. Spoon sauce over the shanks and lentils. Top with apricot-almond-ramp mixture. Garnish with mint, chives, and parsley if desired, then serve.

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