Anchovies are an ingredient that impart a wonderful depth of flavour to a sauce without leaving any ‘fishy’ taste, and go particularly well with tomatoes.
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 lamb shanks
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large onion, diced
1 large carrot, cut into thick batons
2 medium sticks celery, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons dried oregano
4 anchovies, chopped
zest and juice of 1 lemon
4 medium waxy potatoes, cut into large chunks
½ cup white wine
1 cup chicken stock
1 x 400 gram tin crushed Italian tomatoes
1/3 cup packed mint leaves
1 clove garlic, crushed
zest 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 150˚C.
Lamb: Heat the oil in a large ovenproof casserole. Season the shanks and brown on all sides then transfer to a plate. Add the onion, carrot and celery to the pan, season and cook until tender and lightly golden. Add the garlic, allspice, oregano, anchovies, lemon zest and juice and potatoes then stir in the wine and let it bubble up for a couple of minutes. Add the stock and tomatoes and bring to the boil. Add the shanks back to the pan with any meat juices and nestle in the sauce. Cover with a piece of baking paper then cover tightly with a lid. Cook for 2 hours, turning the shanks halfway through until the meat is very tender and will easily pull away from the bone.
Gremolata: Put the mint, garlic and lemon zest on a board and chop together.
To serve: Transfer the lamb shanks and potatoes to a serving platter and cover to keep warm. If the pan juices are thin, boil over a medium heat until reduced and syrupy. Spoon the sauce over the lamb and top with the gremolata.