This dish looks very impressive served to a table. The nettles add a great twist to the mash and the lamb works really well together with the persillade.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time3 hrs
Servings: 4 people
- 8 Connemara Hill lamb shanks about 475g each
- 50 g plain flour
- 2 tbsp sunflower oil
- 2 onions finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks finely chopped
- 2 carrots finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves crushed
- 375 ml dry white wine
- 750 ml chicken stock
- 4 canned anchovy fillets finely chopped
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 2 tbsp fresh rosemary roughly chopped
- 2 bay leaves
For the persillade:
- 4 tbsp finely chopped fresh mint
- 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic
- 2 tbsp finely grated lemon rind
- 2 canned anchovy fillets finely chopped
- Small handful fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
For the nettle mash:
- 1.2 kg floury potatoes peeled and halved or quartered if large
- 75 g butter
- 100 ml milk
- 50 tender young nettle leaves washed well and roughly chopped
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place a really large casserole pan on a high heat. Season the lamb shanks and toss them in the flour to coat.
Add the oil to the pan and working in batches, sear the lamb shanks all over until golden brown, transferring them to a large plate as you go.
Next, reduce the heat to medium and add the onions, celery and carrots to the pan. Sauté for 6-8 minutes until soft but not coloured, adding the garlic for the last minute. Mix in a little bit of flour to thicken the sauce. Increase the heat and then add the wine, allowing it to bubble down for a minute or two.
Now add the tomato puree, then the rosemary and bay leaf. Then add the anchovies and season well.
Return the lamb shanks to the pan, pour over the stock and cover with a tight fitting lid. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a very gentle simmer for about 3 hours. Turn the shanks occasionally during this time.
Meanwhile, prepare the persillade. Simply toss the mint, lemon zest, parsley, garlic and anchovies together in a small bowl. Cover and chill until serving.
Half an hour before serving, prepare the mash. Cook the potatoes in a large pan of boiling salted water for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Warm the milk and butter in a small pan until just coming to the boil and remove.
Drain the potatoes well and mash until smooth with the milk and butter mixture. Stir the nettles through to wilt completely and season to taste. Cover and keep warm.
To serve, spoon a large dollop of creamy nettle mash into the centre of each serving bowl or plate. Sit a lamb shank proudly on top, spoon the sauce over and scatter generously with persillade.