At last spring is here, with a snow storm last week we thought that winter would never end. So the sun has broken through and the trees are full of blossoms. Although the days are warm the nights are still very chilly. Braised shanks are a great way to bring together all the flavors of spring.
The shank is a great cut, full of flavor and it even creates its own stock as it cooks. We have found our Cuisinart digital pressure cooker the perfect cooking device for this type of dish.
Let your shanks come up to room temperature for about an hour then season well with salt and pepper.
Set the pressure cooker to Sauté then add a little olive oil and then brown the shanks on all sides.
As the shanks are browning roughly chop some washed carrots, leeks, onion and some fresh thyme and parsley. The thyme came from our garden and is the fresh growth of 2013. The leeks need to be well cleaned to remove any sand.
Add to the shanks in the pressure cooker then pour in a splash of port and about two cups of water. throw in a Bay leaf then place the lid on and cook on high pressure for 40min. Allow for a natural pressure release then remove the shanks and strain the stock.
The lamb will have produced a thick film of fat so place the stock in a bowl and surround by ice. Once chilled skim of the hardened fat and then place the stock in a sauce pan and reduce to desired thickness.
Reheat the shanks in the stock then serve with mash potato and spring vegetables.