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Braised Lamb Shanks with Cous Cous

Braised Lamb Shanks with Cous Cous

Tender and falling off the bone with a rich, sumptuous sauce, this one-pot lamb dish is easy to make and impressive on the dining table.

Serves 2


2 lamb shanks

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground

¼ cup plain flour

1 tablespoon of cooking oil

6 shallots, peeled and halved

6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed

200g chopped tomatoes or tomato passata

250ml fresh orange juice

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated

½ cube chicken stock, crumbled

¼ teaspoon of salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

300ml water

1 large carrot, peeled and cut into rounds

200g chickpeas cooked, or canned

2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

Cous Cous:

1 cup of cous cous

300ml hot water

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon dried cranberries

¼ teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Zest of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon fresh mint, sliced

1 tablespoon fresh dill or basil, sliced

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted


  1. Preheat your oven to 220C, and place a heavy-based ovenproof casserole in the oven.
  2. Wipe the lamb shanks with paper towels, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Coat them in flour. 
  3. When the casserole is very hot, coat it with oil, then place the lamb shanks in.
  4. Roast the lamb shanks until golden brown, turning every 10 minutes for a total of 30 minutes.
  5. Turn the heat down to 170C and scatter the shallots and garlic inside. Cook for 10 minutes. 
  6. Meanwhile, mix the tomatoes, orange juice, grated ginger, stock cube, salt and pepper in a jug with 100ml water.
  7. Pour the mixture over the lamb and cover with a lid or foil.
  8. Continue cooking for 80 minutes, testing the tenderness every 40 mins, and topping up with 100ml water.
  9. Add the carrots and chickpeas plus remaining 100ml water, and continue cooking, covered for 1 hour, until the carrots and lamb is tender, and the sauce is thick.
  10. To make the couscous, set a small saucepan on the stove and add the water, butter, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and cranberries. Bring to a boil.
  11. When boiling, add the cous cous, immediately cover and allow to simmer for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, leaving the pan covered.
  12. After 8 minutes, open the lid and fluff the cous cous up with a fork.
  13. Allow to cool a bit more before adding the remaining ingredients and tossing together.
  14. To serve, check the seasoning of the lamb, and add salt and pepper to your preferences and sprinkle with chopped parsley. 
  15. Serve one lamb shank per person, topping with the sauce, chickpeas and carrots. Pile the cous cous beside the lamb.

Chef’s tip: If you don’t have an oven, you can also cook this dish on the stove, first browning the shanks in oil, then lowering the heat and cooking it covered for a total of 1.5 - 3 hours.

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