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Braised Lamb Shank with Three Bean Ragout and Fresh Ricotta

Braised Lamb Shank with Three Bean Ragout and Fresh Ricotta

Yield: 12 servings.


3 cups all purpose flour
¾ cup guajillo chile powder
3 Tbsp. kosher salt
3 Tbsp. freshly cracked pepper
12 American Lamb foreshanks
¾ cup olive oil, divided
3 cups onions, chopped
3 cups carrots, chopped
15 cloves celery, chopped
3 cups garlic
3 quarts white wine
3 quarts veal or chicken stock
6 sprigs fresh thyme
6 sprigs fresh rosemary
6 bay leaves
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Three Bean Ragout:
1½ cups white beans
1½ cups black beans
1½ cups cannellini beans
1 lb. bacon, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
1 Tbsp. fresh oregano, chopped
3 cups chicken stock
18 garlic cloves, sliced
6 jalapeños, diced
to taste, kosher salt
to taste, freshly cracked pepper

Ricotta Cheese:
1 quart buttermilk
1 tsp. ancho chile powder
1 tsp. fresh oregano, chopped
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 qt. whole milk


  • Mix flour, chili powder and salt and pepper together. Roll the lamb shanks in this flour mixture. In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 Tbsp. oil over medium-high heat. In batches, sear shanks on all sides to brown. Remove from pan. Repeat process, adding more oil as needed.
  • Add onions, carrots, celery and garlic; sauté to brown. Add wine, stock, thyme, rosemary and bay leaves. Bring to a boil.
  • Arrange lamb shanks in three 13”x9”x2” baking pans, placing 4 shanks in each pan. Divide vegetable mixture between the 3 baking pans, pouring over the shanks. Cover with foil and bake at 325°F for 2 ½ hours, turning shanks halfway through. Meat should be very tender but still on the bone. Remove shanks and keep warm.
  • Strain sauce and reduce by half. Add butter; stir until melted.
  • For three bean ragout: Put all beans in large pot and cover with cold water. Put a lid on this pan and let beans soak for 6 hours or overnight. Drain beans and return to pot, adding bacon, thyme, oregano, stock, garlic and jalapenos. Cover with water. Bring to boil and cook for 2 hours, until tender, adding water as necessary. Drain well. Season with salt and pepper.
  • For ricotta cheese: In a 4-quart saucepan combine buttermilk, milk, chile powder, oregano and salt. Cook over low heat. Do not stir. After 15 minutes, check temperature. Continue to check temperature every 2 minutes until it reaches 180°F. When temperature is achieved, strain through a fine strainer. Place in refrigerator to cool. Use as needed. Can be stored in refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Serve shanks with three-bean ragout, fresh ricotta and a little pan sauce.