This is a sponsored post. Recipe, photography and styling by Tanya Zouev.
Recently I received in the mail from Kitchenware Superstore a much-coveted object of desire: a Le Creuset pan. However, not just any Le Creuset pan, it was huge, oval and blue. Just the right pan in fact to make this warming winter Turkish inspired lamb shank dish. Like so many of my recipes, they are borne out of a challenge and this one was to create an alternative to the proliferation of tomato-based lamb shank recipes which dominate cookbooks and cooking websites.
As we are over half way through winter in Australia, most of us will have pulled out and dusted off their cast iron cookware by now to make warming slow cooked casseroles and bakes. This particular lamb shank recipe is perfect weekend cooking for a cool winters day and is very easy to prepare. These shanks are delicious alongside the creamy potato and kumera mash with a touch of saffron and you have a beautiful dish you can serve for either Sunday lunch or dinner with friends. This recipe I promise, will have everyone licking their plates clean.
I’m not a big fan of trawling shopping malls, much preferring to shop with my laptop from the comfort of my desk (or even better still, my sofa). Kitchenware Superstore is one of those huge comprehensive shopping sites that I love spending time trawling through. I don’t normally mention online stores on my blog however their site is beautifully designed, gorgeous to look at and easy to use. (After all there is nothing more frustrating than not being able to find shipping information or your shopping cart.) It was really wonderful to have so many of my favourite brands in one store all with a price match guarantee: Le Creuset, Laguiole, Cuisinart, Zero Japan, KitchenAid, Scanpan to name just a few.
In addition to the gifted Le Creuset pan, I purchased a set of Luigi Bormioli stemless red wine glasses and Donna Hay tea towels. There are of course at least a dozen other things I’d like to buy from Kitchenware Superstore (including a cobalt blue KitchenAid Artisan mixer) and I will most definitely be back, hopefully much sooner than later. I recommend you do too.
The lamb shanks (pictured with the Le Creuset oval pan, Donna Hay tea towel and Luigi Bormioli stemless wine glass).
Serves 4-6. Prep time 30 mins, cooking time 3 and a 1/4 hours.
two tablespoons olive oil
six Frenched lamb shanks
two large onions cut into eighths
two quinces peeled, cored and cut into quarters or eighths
six cloves garlic, minced
three bay leaves
one cup chicken, lamb or vegetable stock
two tablespoons sour cherry, plum or apricot jam
two tablespoons Turkish mild pepper paste (available at Middle Eastern grocers such as Oriental & Continental Foods in Sydney’s Artarmon)
one tablespoon red wine vinegar
one tablespoon ground coriander
one teaspoon ground cumin
salt and cracked black pepper to taste
finely chopped flat leaf parsley to garnish
Preheat oven to 150˚C (300˚F).
1. In a heavy based cast iron casserole such as a Le Creuset, heat the olive oil and brown the lamb shanks all over two at a time (so as to not crowd the pan), and arrange neatly in two layers.
2. In a separate small mixing bowl whisk together the stock, red wine vinegar, jam, pepper paste, ground coriander, cumin, minced garlic and pour over the lamb shanks.
3. Tuck the onion and bay leaves around the shanks, put the lid on the pan, and place in the oven for 1.5 hours.
4. After 1.5 hours remove from oven and place pieces of quince around the shanks, place lid back on and put back in oven for a further 1.5 hours. (This will give you a cooked-through quince that isn’t too mushy).
5. Once the shanks are cooked, remove from the pan and set aside in a warm place. The sauce will be a little runny so put the pan on the cooktop and reduce it down over medium heat to thicken.
6. Spoon mash onto a plate, place a lamb shank on top with the quince and onion pieces and spoon the sauce over.
The saffron kumera mash.
two large potatoes, peeled and cut into 3cm (1.5”) pieces
two medium kumera (sweet potatoes), peeled and cut into 4-5cm pieces (2”)
1 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons butter
a pinch of saffron, first steeped in a tablespoon of boiling water for a couple of minutes
a pinch of white pepper
1. In a heavy based saucepan over medium heat place the potato and kumera, add the milk and saffron. Cook for approximately 20 minutes or until tender. Mash with a potato masher or food processor (I like to whip mine in the Thermomix). Drizzle with olive oil and serve immediately.
** The flavours in both the shanks and the mash improve overnight and are just as enjoyable, if not more, the next day.
The Le Creuset pan was the hero of the shoot so I chose warm brown tones as a background so it shone. It came from Kitchenware Superstore as did the Luigi Bormioli stemless wine glasses and Donna Hay tea towels. The timber surface is a rescued coffee table from a hard rubbish collection. Extra props including the bread board, vintage Danish salt and pepper grinders are from local op-shops. The white plate is from Country Road and the black bowl is from Mud Australia. The image has been artificially lit with two scrimmed Elinchrom flash lighting units and soft boxes.