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Braised Lamb Shanks In Merlot With Figs

  • Preparation Time: 15 mins
  • Serves: 4
  • Cooking Time: 120 mins
  • Ready Time: 135 mins
  • Cooking Method: Slow Cook
  • Difficulty: Easy

2 large onions, peeled and finely chopped
2 stalks celery, trimmed and finely chopped
12-20 black olives
2-4 Tbsp capers
2 cups dried figs, halved
2 Tbsp fresh rosemary
1 tsp ground black pepper
6 cloves garlic, crushed but not peeled
750 ml of superb Merlot red wine
About 2 Tbsp oil
¼ cup tomato paste
1 cup stock (beef or chicken)
Salt and pepper to season


In a deep dish put the lamb shanks, onions, celery, olives, capers, dried figs, rosemary, black pepper and garlic and pour over the wine. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator overnight or for at least 4 hours.
Remove the shanks from the marinade and set aside. Heat the oil in a frying pan and brown the shanks on all sides. Transfer to a casserole.
Add the tomato paste to the pan and stir over a moderate heat until it becomes quite a deep reddish brown colour.

Add the stock and bring to the boil. Pour over the lamb shanks and add the reserved marinade ingredients.

Cover and cook at 160°C for 2-2.5 hours until the meat is almost falling off the bone. Season with salt and pepper if wished.

To Serve

Serve with roughly mashed potatoes and fresh greens.

Serves 4-6

Recipe by Allyson Gofton for New Zealand Beef and Lamb


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