Bacon and Cabbage Frittata paint

These slowly braised lamb shanks are absolutely the ultimate in comfort food. The meat is so tender that it just melts off the bone. Serve it with a lovely mash to soak up them fantastic juices and flavours. Leftovers can be transferred to a pie dish and topped with pastry. You can either freeze it for a quick midweek dinner or eat in the next day or two – it will be doubly delicious.

Serves 2-4 (depending on size of shanks and how hungry you are)

Braised Lamb Shank

  • Good dash of olive oil
  • 2 large lamb shank, approximately 450 grams each
  • 50 grams smoky chorizo sausage, freshly skinned, cut into thin matchsticks or dice
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 6 large sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped (300 grams)
  • 1 celery stick (100 grams)
  • 2 carrots, roughly chopped (350 grams)
  • 1 level teaspoon hot paprika
  • 3 lightly rounded teaspoons freshly ground cumin
  • 1 small cinnamon bark (4-5 grams)
  • 70 grams tomato puree (3 tablespoons approximately)
  • 800 -1000 ml chicken stock (homemade or use 1-2 kallo stock cubes)
  • 1 tin butterbeans, rinsed (400 grams)
  • Seasoning of sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 10 grams flat parsley to garnish

Sweet Potato Mash

  • 1-2 floury potatoes, cut small
  • 1 large sweet potato, cut same size as above
  • 30 – 50 grams butter, melted
  • Seasoning
  • Low GI
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free
  • Diabetic Friendly
  • Paleo: Omit butterbeans and add an extra paleo friendly vegetable instead.
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  1. To prepare lamb, using a sharp knife, make 3-4 small incisions in each of the shanks. Rub in oil, thyme, oregano, roughly chopped garlic cloves and chorizo. Cover and allow too marinate for a couple of hours or overnight (not necessary if your are in a hurry).
  2. Preheat oven 150c
  3. To cook the lamb, heat a frying pan until hot. Toss the shanks in the marinate oil one last time, scraping off the chorizo and garlic cloves, season lamb with salt and fresh pepper and add to pan, fry on on all sides for 2-3 minutes, until browned all over.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a large ovenproof casserole dish until hot (le creuset or similar is good), add a good splash of olive oil directly followed by the onions and celery, fry until onions and celery are soft and translucent: approximately 10-15 minutes, the longer you cook them the sweeter they will become.
  5. Add spices and cinnamon bark, cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring gently. Stir in tomato puree, cook for 1 minute. Add stock and bring to a simmer. Add lamb shanks, carrots and butter beans – bring back to a simmer, gently stirring. Cover and place in oven for 2½ – 3 hours, or until meat is meltingly tender and falling off the bone.
  6. For sweet potato mash: Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water, add a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, lower to a simmer and cook until tender 20 to 25 minutes or until cooked. Drain potatoes using a colander, then melt butter in same saucepan that you used for the potatoes. Using a potato ricer or potato masher, mash to the desired consistency. Mix In melted butter and seasoning.
  7. To serve, spoon potato onto warmed plates. Lift lamb shanks from sauce and place on top of mash.
  8.  Stir parsley into sauce, taste and check seasoning then spoon the sauce over the lamb shanks and serve at once.

Maggie's Tips

  • Like all good casseroles/stews/soups, this dish is best made a day ahead as flavours have a chance to develop.
  • Tweak chickpeas for butterbeans
  • Tweak coriander for parsley
  • I originally cooked this dish for two.  The addition of butterbeans and the natural fats that ooze from the lamb this dish makes this dish very filling. I had enough leftovers to create another dinner which became surprise-surprise  “A lamb pie for four” I made it with a beautiful homemade puff pastry. If you don’t have time to make your own puff pastry a shop bought brand will do.