****Excess or reserved sauce is excellent for boiled or baked pastas.


  • 6 lamb shanks, about 1 pound each
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes (could use fresh tomatoes as well)
  • Zest and juice from one orange
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 cups water (could use all water for the wine and water)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • 6 carrots, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a heavy ovenproof kettle large enough to contain all the ingredients heat oil until hot but not smoking and brown the shanks. Remove shanks from pan. Brown onions, stirring until golden. Stir in garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, orange zest and juice, wine, water, bay, cinnamon, allspice, salt and pepper to taste, and bring to a boil. Cover and braise lamb in oven until tender, about 1 3/4 hours.

Stir in carrots and continue braising for another 15-20 minutes.

Skim fat from braising liquid and remove shanks and carrots from pan. Boil braising liquid until reduced to about 4 cups. Return shanks and carrots to pan and simmer until warmed through.

Discard bay leaf. Sprinkle lamb and vegetables with parsley and serve.

Recipe Notes: Low fat: well, perhaps choose another dish! Could reduce the amount of oil used to brown and carefully skim to remove all traces of excess fats. Vegetarian: these flavors would be wonderful with a winter vegetable melange---substitute a combination of your favorite winter vegetables (rutabaga, potatoes, parsnips, brussel sprouts, carrots, beets, squash, chestnuts, etc) and braise until tender, perhaps 30 minutes. Make ahead: yes, completely. In fact, the shanks may improve in flavor if made one day ahead. Reheat slowly over low heat.

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Submitted 6/13/05.
Source: Personal Archives
Submitted By: KT Ellenbecker
Braised Lamb Shanks with Sweet Spices