This lovely one pot wonder, so named by a friend of the Gypsyman, is a firm favourite and easy-peasy.
Of course lamb shanks are fiendishly popular now and so have rocketed in price. As a result, this dish in our household is now a rare treat instead of a staple.
It works well with shoulder, too, which is the cheaper option, but you will have to trim off as much of the fat as you can get at – inside and out.
One medium lamb shank per greedy participant or a whole trimmed shoulder to share.
Prepare a foil casing for the ingredients in the base of a roasting tray, leaving plenty to loosely wrap round the meat, hotpot style, so that the meat can pot roast in its own juices.
The vegetables I use are carrots, leeks, red peppers, cloves of garlic and new potatoes. I choose these for their flavour and because they are very forgiving about cooking times.
Herbs for this are Tarragon or Rosemary or Thyme. Here’s the thing…. if you add the traditional Rosemary, use only tender shoots rather than the older ones. I always think the older ones are rather like eating tree if they get in your mouth. As a landscape gardener’s labourer, I sometimes get tree in my mouth, so I do know. It’s not nice.
The size of the carrots and leeks determines whether they shall be left whole or sliced into chunks on the diagonal. The peppers, I tend to seed and cut into quarters or sixths. The potatoes, I leave whole. (If your potatoes are tiny, add them at a slightly later stage of the cooking than the rest of the vegetables.)
Oil the base of the foil.
Make a bed of the vegetables, add herbs of your choice and season.
Place the meat on top, add a splish of white wine, season and seal, tight.
Middle shelf, slow to medium oven for couple or three hours or so, depending on the efficiency of your oven and whether you are cooking a shank or a shoulder.
After this, check the meat. By now, it should be starting to fall off the bone and swimming in some pretty fragrant juice. If, however, your oven is slow, like mine, you may need to re-seal and carry on.
Depending on the state of you meat, we like ours meltingly soft, you can do one of two things. Carry on with the foil folded back to reduce the juice and keep cooking the meat, or remove the meat and veg to a warm serving dish, while you reduce the juice on the hob.
A lovely one pot meal, nothing else is needed except some big bowls to serve it in and some crusty bread and butter.