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Braised Lamb Shanks on Mashed Fingerlings

Braised Lamb Shanks
Photo: The American Lamb Board
From: Chef Duane Keller, Walker’s Grille, Alexandria, VA. Yield: 6 servings  

Braised Lamb Shanks:
6 lamb hindshanks, 18 oz. each    
4 oz. herb oil (recipe follows)    
2 oz. carrots, scrubbed, large diced    
½ head celery, washed, large diced    
1 large Spanish onion, large diced    
1 qt. good pinot noir or red wine    
2 qt. fresh lamb or chicken stock    
12 sprigs whole thyme    
to taste, salt and pepper    
3 Tbsp. AA unsalted butter    

Herb Oil:
3 oz. olive oil    
6 cloves garlic    
1 Tbsp. fresh cracked black pepper    
2 Tbsp. tarragon    
2 Tbsp. fresh rosemary    
2 Tbsp. Dijon-style mustard    

Mashed Fingerlings:
24 fingerling potatoes, scrubbed    
4 oz. AA unsalted butter    
2 oz. heavy cream, scalded    
3 Tbsp. chopped parsley    
to taste, salt and pepper    

Sautéed Spinach:
3 Tbsp. AA unsalted butter    
1 Tbsp. chopped garlic    
2 lb. spinach, stems removed, triple washed    
to taste, salt and pepper to taste

For the Braised Lamb Shanks: Rub lamb shanks with herb oil; refrigerate for 24 hours. In a 12-quart braising or roasting pan over medium-high heat, sear all sides of the shanks until obtaining a rich brown color. Remove shanks; let rest. Add carrots, celery and onion to the hot pan; sauté until tender.  Deglaze the pan with wine, scraping the bottom of the pan. Add stock and thyme. Place seared shanks back into the pan; cover and braise for approximately 2 hours at 325°F, or until lamb is very tender and almost falling off the bone. Remove shanks; keep warm. Strain stock and reduce by 70 percent. Season with salt and pepper and finish with butter; these are your pan juices.

For the herb oil: In a blender, add oil, garlic, pepper, tarragon, rosemary and mustard; blend on high for 10 seconds.

For the mashed fingerlings: In a large pan, steam or boil potatoes until fork tender; drain. Mash potatoes with butter, cream, parsley, salt and pepper.

For the sautéed spinach: In a large pot over medium heat, add butter and garlic; sauté for 2 minutes. Add spinach, stirring occasionally; cook until spinach wilts, approximately 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

To plate: Place 4 ounces of mashed fingerlings on bottom of plate. Place sautéed spinach on potatoes, and balance shank on top, bone straight up.  Finish with pan juices and rosemary garnish.

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