A lamb lovers dream! This is one of my favorite lamb recipes. Lamb shanks are slow roasted in a tomato base, then glazed with an ancho honey glaze, and topped with a dollop of yogurt.
INGREDIENTS (for 4 servings):
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 pounds lamb shanks
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 dried ancho chiles - chopped, stemmed and seeded
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 4 cups tomato puree
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper to taste
- 6 dried ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded
- 4 cups boiling water
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- salt to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Heat oil in large Dutch oven or enamel baking pot. Sear shanks on all sides and set aside. In the same pot, saute onion and garlic 2 to 3 minutes. Add 2 ancho chilies, tomatoes and chicken stock. Season with cumin, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Boil briefly, then return shanks to pan.
Cover and bake in preheated oven for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Meat should be just ready to fall off the bone.
To make the glaze: Cover 6 ancho chilies with boiling water, and soak for 10 minutes. In a food processor, combine chilies, 1 cup water, honey and orange zest. Process until smooth; set aside.
To make the topping: In a small bowl, mix together yogurt, cilantro and salt. Cover, and refrigerate.
When the shanks are done, remove them from the Dutch oven, and place them into an oiled roasting pan. Increase oven temperature to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spread glaze over shanks and return to oven until light crust forms, 6 to 10 minutes. Serve on large plates surrounded by tomato base and topped with the refreshing yogurt mixture.