Braised Lamb Shanks
with Pearl Barley and Root Vegetables

Serves 4


This recipe is from our friend Eugene Callaghan in Gorey, County Wexford. It is typical of the tasty, hearty fare that he serves in his pub to locals and visitors alike. Shanks are meaty leg joints that are perfect for braising.


4 lamb shanks
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons pearl barley
1-1/4 cups lamb stock or water
1 fresh thyme sprig or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 fresh parsley sprig
1 teaspoon salt
5 ounces carrots, roughly chopped
1 large leek, cut into 8 pieces
4 small potatoes, quartered
2 small onions, quartered
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 heaped tablespoons fresh parsley leaves,
   blanched and refreshed, to garnish


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Ask your butcher to trim off any excess fat and saw the knuckles from the shanks. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Fry the lamb shanks until nicely colored on all sides. Transfer them to a large flameproof baking dish and add the barley, stock or water, herbs and salt. Cover tightly with foil and a lid and cook in the preheated oven for 1-1/2 hours.

Remove the casserole from the oven, add the vegetables and a little more water if necessary. Season the vegetables lightly with salt and pepper, then cover the dish and return it to the oven for a further hour.

Remove from the oven and check that the lamb is very tender and almost falling off the bone. If you think that it's not quite ready, return it to the oven for another 15 minutes.

Transfer the lamb to a warmed serving platter and cover while you finish the braised vegetables. Bring the dish back to a simmer on top of the stove, adding more water to give you a nice consistency if necessary. Add the blanched parsley leaves and check and adjust the seasoning to taste.

To serve, ladle the braised vegetables onto large warmed plates and place the shanks on top.


Gourmet Ireland
From the Public Television Series

By Paul and Jeanne Rankin
Bay Books
Paperback, $18.95
ISBN: 0-912333-15-4
Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy the Book!

Gourmet Ireland 2
From the Public Television Series

By Paul and Jeanne Rankin
Bay Books
Paperback, $18.95
ISBN: 0-912333-34-0
Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy the Book!


Gourmet Ireland and Gourmet Ireland 2



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