Saturday, December 13, 2008

Lamb shanks

Eastside Road, Healdsburg, December 13, 2008—

COMPANY TO DINNER: let's have lamb shanks, I said; good idea, Lindsey answered. We were in Berkeley yesterday, so we stopped in at Magnani and there they were, lamb shanks from Sonoma county, 6.95 a pound. I got about five pounds.
Richard Olney's book Simple French Food is one of our Bibles, and it falls open naturally to the page. You brown the (salted) shanks in olive oil in a heavy copper pot, throw in a dozen unpeeled garlic cloves, and cook very slowly until they begin to sizzle. Normally I do this on the stove, but it was cold here today, so I put the pots — two were needed — into the oven to cook slowly for two or three hours, adding a few pinches of dried herbes de Provence along the way.
When they're done you remove the meat to another vessel, run the garlic cloves through a food mill, and deglaze the pans with white wine. Return the puréed garlic to the resultant juice and cook it down. Pepper and chopped parsley are the only remaining ingredients. Green salad, of course.
"Super T Rex", Deerfield Ranch Winery (sangiovese, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, dolcetto), 2002

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