Braised Lamb with Almonds and Mint

Braised Lamb with Almonds and Mint

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  • 2 pounds trimmed lamb shoulder, cut into 1 1/2'–2' cubes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more for seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more for seasoning
  • 2 cups canned tomato juice
  • 1 cup low-salt chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot Hungarian paprika
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons frozen peas, defrosted and warmed in microwave
  • 2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

Recipe Preparation

  • Season lamb with 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Working in batches, cook lamb until golden brown on all sides, 7–8 minutes per batch. Using a slotted spoon, transfer browned lamb to a medium bowl and set aside.

  • Add onions to same pot and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened and light golden, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 1 minute. Add wine and reserved browned lamb along with any accumulated juices. Simmer lamb until liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato juice, chicken broth, ground cumin, hot paprika, and 1/2 cup water; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until lamb is tender and sauce is thickened, about 1 hour 30 minutes.

  • Add chopped carrot and cook un-covered, stirring occasionally, until carrot is tender and sauce is thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in parsley. Transfer braised lamb to a large bowl. Garnish lamb with peas, almonds, and mint.

Recipe by Mario Leon of Dal in Somerville MA

Nutritional Content

6 servings; 1 serving contains: Calories (kcal) 417.0 %Calories from Fat 57.0 Fat (g) 26.4 Saturated Fat (g) 9.5 Cholesterol (mg) 109.7 Carbohydrates (g) 12.3 Dietary Fiber (g) 2.7 Total Sugars (g) 5.8 Net Carbs (g) 9.6 Protein (g) 31.2 Sodium (mg) 547.7Reviews Section

Dietary and nutritional info supplied by NZ Nutrition Foundation.

  • 1½ Tbsp olive oil
  • 6 small lamb shanks
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 Tbsp sweet paprika
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 400g can diced tomatoes
  • Plain, unsweetened yoghurt, to serve
  • Coriander leaves, to serve
  • Lemon wedges, to serve

Minted Couscous

  • 2 cups couscous
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1⁄3 cup shredded mint
  • ½ cup slivered almonds, toasted
  • 2 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest

Tender Leg of Lamb Roast with Flavorful Mint Pesto

This dish is best started on a cool, lazy Sunday afternoon and allowed to roast all day long. Serve the fall-off-the-bone meat with mint pesto and the roasted vegetables for a completely satisfying meal.
By Anina Meyer

Cooking this leg of lamb put me right back to my childhood where making lazy, slow baked roasts for Sunday lunch was the norm. My mom used to have her leg of lamb in the oven before we even had our church clothes on, and the smell lingering in the kitchen as we got back from town was, well, like the one you will get ONLY from a roasted leg of lamb in the oven.

One thing I know without a doubt, is that when it comes to cooking a leg of lamb, 7 hours in the oven on low heat, IS the only way to cook a leg of lamb. Point. Fear not this elusive idea of time, my friends, because it really ain’t that hard.

I had the oven on 120 degrees Celsius (250 degrees Fahrenheit), for 7 hours simply seasoned the meat with salt and black pepper, a few sprigs of rosemary and thyme and had it covered for a good five hours of the cooking time. When it is done, it literally falls apart and served with a quick mint pesto, it is THE roast for this festive season.

Mrs Tollman’s Divine Chicken Pot Pie

I also went all out by roasting whole garlic, pearl onions and sweet potatoes – IN the fat from the roasted lamb – with baby carrots and buttery cauliflower rice.

Braised Lamb with Fruits and Nuts

Makes 4 to 6 servings. Cover 45 g of raisins and 30 g sultanas in boiling water.

Trim an 800 g boneless piece of young lamb (leg or shoulder) of all visible fat.

Put the piece in a large saucepan and add 3 cups of water, a tablespoon of lemon juice and 2 bay leaves.

Cover, bring to the boil, skim, and simmer very gently for about one hour or until a skewer glides into the meat with ease.

Remove the meat, setting it aside, and reduce the stock over high heat to about ¼ of a cup.

Reserve the stock and wash the saucepan.

Into a processor bowl put 2 large onions quartered, 6 cloves of garlic, 5 cm ginger roughly chopped, ½ tablespoon ground cardamom, 2 tablespoons ground coriander, 1 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 tablespoon white poppy seeds, 45 g ground almonds and 1 teaspoon black pepper. Process to a paste. Chop finely a generous handful of fresh mint and have ready 200 g plain yoghurt (low fat yoghurt can be used). Heat 2 tablespoons mono- or polyun- saturated oil in the saucepan, add onion and spice paste and fry, stirring, for about 3 minutes or until it is fragrant. Add the mint and yoghurt and simmer gently until the sauce is thick and creamy. Return the meat to the saucepan, spooning the sauce over it, cover and braise gently until the meat is heated through. Add the reserved stock to the saucepan and stir through. Continue to simmer uncovered until the stock is completely reduced. Sprinkle over the meat and sauce 2 teaspoons garam masala, 1 teaspoon chilli powder and salt to taste if you regard it as necessary.

In a frying pan, heat a little oil and gently fry the drained sultanas and raisins, together with 45 g blanched slivered almonds, for about 5 minutes. Add them to the saucepan and stir. Infuse a few strands of saffron in a tablespoon of boiling water and add 1½ teaspoons of rosewater. Stir this mixture into the saucepan and heat for a minute or so more. Slice the meat, which by now should be meltingly tender, and arrange on a serving dish. Spoon the sauce over the meat. Serve with rice.

Makes: 6 servings
Total Time: 45 minutes

3 beets
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Place the beets in a pot and submerge completely with cold water and a tablespoon of salt. Bring to a boil and cook for about 30 minutes until fork tender.

2. Drain the beets. Let cool for 10 minutes and peel and cut the beets into ¼ inch cubes.

3. Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat. Add the beets, cumin, remaining 2 teaspoons of salt and pepper and sauté until coated, about 3 minutes.

4. Transfer to a bowl and serve warm or at room tempurature.

Spring Lamb with Mint Yogurt

Spring Lamb with Mint Yogurt

On a chilly spring day, we need a dish that falls somewhere between hearty and refreshing. Try this braised lamb with spring asparagus, peas, and topped with a lemon-mint yogurt. Recipe: http://bit.ly/1YbzcsE

Posted by Honest Cooking Magazine on Thursday, April 7, 2016

Breaking Bread at Balade

We had to show off this beautiful Le Creuset enameled cast iron pan for this video. Isn’t she a beaut?! Make sure to use a heavy pan that comes with a lid for this recipe.


  • Oil enough for cooking
  • 1 pound of lamb leg cut into smalled cubes
  • 3/4 cup onion diced
  • 1/3 cup carrots diced
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups asparagus cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1-2 cups peas
  • 1 Tablespoon mint chopped

Yogurt Sauce

  • 1/2 cup whole milk plain yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon mint chopped
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice


Yogurt Sauce

The Honest Cooking editorial team handpicks inspiring culinary stories to share with you that we think are beautiful. As an international online culinary magazine with the ambition to truly change the face of online food media we hope to create an inspiring place for serious culinary debate, salivating recipes, interesting food news and international food-fun.


finely grated zest of 2 lemons

2 teaspoons allspice berries, crushed

1?2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

1?2 cup whole black olives

400ml can whole peeled tomatoes

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1?2 cup blanched almonds, coarsely chopped

1?2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

11?2 cups brown basmati rice, soaked for 2 hours

750ml chicken stock, heated to boiling

1?2 cup chopped mint leaves

Blend together all the ingredients for the marinade in a blender or food processor.

Trim the excess fat and membranes from the leg of lamb. Make deep regular cuts all over the flesh with a short, sharp knife. Rub in the marinade, making sure you get it into the deep cuts. Place the lamb in a plastic food bag with the marinade and leave in the fridge, ideally for 24 hours, or for a minimum of 6-8 hours.

For the honey rub, blend together 70g/2½oz of the almonds, the yoghurt and half the honey in a blender or food processor. Take the lamb out of the fridge and remove the plastic bag. Rub the honey blend into the lamb and ideally leave the lamb for another two hours (or at least 30 minutes), covered, in the fridge. Remove the lamb from the fridge and bring to room temperature before cooking.

Preheat the oven to 225C/425F/Gas 7 and place the lamb on a rack with a roasting tray underneath. Cook for 15 minutes then lower the heat to 180C/350F/Gas 4 and cook for another 1 hour 40 minutes, or until the meat juices run fairly pink when pierced, basting every 20-30 minutes.

Scatter over the remaining almonds and drizzle over the remaining honey and roast for another ten minutes. Check if the meat is cooked using a meat thermometer. The temperature should be 130-150C. The higher the temperature the more well cooked the meat will be.

Remove the lamb from the oven. Cover it with foil and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Pour out the juices, spoon off any excess fat, and serve it on the side. Serve the lamb with roasted potatoes and a vegetable of your choice.

Karl’s Braised Lamb Shanks with Middle Eastern Flavors

It it Father’s Day, so I get to pick the menu. Being a Lueck I will, of course, pick lamb. I have been craving lamb shanks lately.

Karl’s Braised Lamb Shanks
with Middle Eastern Flavors

There is nothing quite like a slow braised, tender lamb shank, but the next question is what flavor? French—with thyme, and savory? Greek—with rosemary and lemon? Chinese—with five spice, and soy sauce? Middle Eastern—with fruit, and cinnamon?

I was drifting toward Middle Eastern, but none of the recipes I looked at quite fit the hole in my head. In the end, I decided to mine the recipes I found for an ingredients list. Taking this ingredient from this recipe and that ingredient from another, I created something new with Middle Eastern flavors.

Middle Eastern lamb frequently includes some dried fruit—raisins, apricots, prunes. This is stone fruit season, in California, so I decided that I would use fresh apricots instead. A touch of white grape juice would add to the fruity tang. A bit of cinnamon and cardamom would both compliment the fruits’ flavors and nail the recipe to the Middle East.

With the base of my recipe fixed, I could now start pulling in ingredients from other cuisines. Leeks are more a Northern European ingredient, but I like their flavor. Crossing the Aegean for the brightness of lemon. A touch of soy sauce for the umami. This may not be exactly any one country’s idea of “Middle Eastern,” but it is mine—Mayan? No, No! That would be chili and chocolate.

Note: To round out my meal—man does not live on meat alone, although many would like to—I made an Israeli couscous and stuffed artichoke hearts.

Karl’s Lamb Shanks with
Israeli Coucous and Stuffed Artichokes

Karl’s Braised Lamb Shanks with Middle Eastern Flavors


4 lamb shanks (about 1 lb. each)
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper, fresh cracked

2 Tbs. olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 large stalks celery, diced
½ tsp. Kosher salt

1 leek, white part only, finely sliced
1 carrot, grated
8 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp. fresh rosemary (or 1 Tbs. dried)
2 tsp. cinnamon, ground
1 tsp. lemon zest
5 cardamom pods, cracked
½ cup white grape juice
1 Tbs. dark soy sauce

7 large fresh apricots, separate uses
2± cups low sodium chicken broth

1. Remove any fell and large lumps of fat from the shanks.

Tip: About an inch and a half up from the smaller end of the shank, cut down through the meat and tendons all away around the bone. Cut away the small meaty bit and reserve it to add to the pot. Scrape the bone clean down to the cut end of the shank.

Note: Without the anchors of the tendons to keep it stretched out along the bone, the meat will contract up toward the joint at the top. This gives the shank an attractive appearance for your presentation.

3. Cross cut some slits through the silver skin.

Tip: You are not trying to cut into the meat, you are just trying to create some openings in the silver skin to let the meat absorb the salt.

Note: There is some debate about whether you should or should not remove the silver skin. Those in favor of removal claim that it makes the dish taste “gamey.” Those against say the meat would fall off the bone without the support of the silver skin. Despite what some claim, fascia—silver skin—is mostly collagen and—in farm raised meat—flavorless. The silver skin and the tendons—also mostly collagen and flavorless—will nearly completely break down into gelatin. This gelatin is what gives slow braises their marvelous “mouth feel.”

4. Sprinkle the shanks all over with salt and pepper.

5. Place them in a plastic bag and refrigerate for several hours.

Tip: Let the salted shanks rest for at least 4 hours, but overnight is better.

Note: Salt and pepper the meaty bits you trimmed off the shanks and add them to the bag.

6. Add 2 Tbs. of olive oil to a large Dutch oven and brown the lamb shanks on all sides, over a high heat.

Tip: Including the meaty bits.

7. Remove the shanks to a plate and add the onions, celery, and salt to the pot, over a medium heat.

8. Use the moisture released by the vegetables to deglaze the pot.

9. Sauté the onions and celery until the onions are well caramelized and many of them are completely browned, about 15-20 minutes.

10. Add the leek and carrot to the pot and continue sautéing until the vegetables have softened, about another five minutes.

11. Pull the vegetables to the sides of the pot and add the garlic to the hole in the center.

Tip: You may need to add a teaspoon more of olive oil to the garlic.

12. Sauté the garlic until fragrant, about one minute, and then stir in the other vegetables.

13. Sprinkle the herbs and spices over the vegetables.

14. Stir in the grape juice and soy sauce to deglaze the pot.

Tip: Scrape the bottom of the pot well to make sure that nothing is sticking to it. Any bits like that may scorch and spoil your dish.

15. Pit, and coarsely chop five of the apricots.

Tip: The reserved apricots will be added at the end of the cooking time as a garnish.

Note: Do not pit, and chop them until you are ready to add them to the pot, to prevent them from turning brown.

16. Stir in the apricots and most of the chicken broth into the pot.

Tip: During the long braise, the fruit and vegetables will break down into a rich sauce.

Note: How much broth you will add will depend on how thick your shanks are. It is easy to add more, but hard to add less.

17. Return the lamb shanks to the pot in a single layer and rinse the juices on the plate into the pot with some more chicken broth.

Tip: Add enough broth so that the liquid level is about half way up the sides of the meat, but not submerging them entirely.

Note: The exposed meat will continue to brown (see Maillard reaction), even in the moist environment of the sealed pot.

18. Bring the pot to a boil, cover, and transfer it to a preheated 375º F oven.

19. Cook the shanks for one hour and then turn each shank over.

Tip: If too much liquid has evaporated, add a bit more broth or water.

20. Recover the pot and continue cooking, undisturbed, for another hour.

21. Remove the Dutch oven to the stove top and transfer the shanks back to the plate.

Tip: Fish around for the meaty bits and transfer them to the plate as well.

22. Use an immersion blender to process the contents of the pot into a smooth sauce.

Tip: Decide if your sauce is thick enough. Simmer on the stove to reduce the sauce, if you fee it is too thin, or stir in some more liquid, if you feel it is getting too thick.

Note: If you prefer a more rustic sauce, you may skip this step and simply stir the contents of the pot to blend the ingredients thoroughly.

23. Dip the most attractive side the lamb shanks into the sauce to coat it and then nestle each shank into the sauce with the “pretty” side up.

Tip: Don’t forget to return the meaty bits back to the pot—unless you have already been snacking on them—chef’s privilege.

24. Return the pot to the oven, uncovered, and continue cooking the shanks for 30 minutes.

Note: This time in the oven will deeply brown the tops of the shanks.

25. Pit and chop the remaining two apricots.

26. Remove the lamb shanks to a serving platter and tent with foil.

Tip: Adjust the seasoning and reduce or add liquid to the sauce as needed.

Note: I prefer to serve directly from the Dutch oven. I transferred the shanks back to the plate for this step.

27. Just before serving, stir the lemon juice into the sauce and spoon some of the sauce over the lamb shanks.

Note: I returned the shanks to the pot and splashed some of the sauce over the meat.

28. Garnish the lamb shanks with the chopped apricots and serve with any extra sauce on the side.

Broiled Lamb Chops with Nigella’s Mint Sauce & Roasted Asparagus

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Nigella Lawson’s mint sauce first appeared on our Easter table in 2003, the same year the Easter Egg Nest Cake made its debut, both recipes having appeared in the New York Times earlier that week.

Unlike the Easter Egg Nest cake, which we loved — really, we did — the mint sauce returned to the table every following Easter, the fresh combination of mint and parsley, olive oil and vinegar, capers and cornichons the perfect accompaniment to lamb no matter the preparation — roasted racks, braised shanks, broiled meatballs, pan-seared chops.

Bright green and fresh, this sauce bears no resemblance to mint jelly and tastes more like a salsa verde or a nut- and cheese-free pesto. It complements the lamb so well, but it’s the kind of sauce you’ll end up drizzling all over your plate, dragging your spears of roasted asparagus through, and mopping up with your bread throughout your meal.

When I began planning my Easter menu a few weeks ago, I briefly entertained the idea of borrowing my aunt and uncle’s spit, making a vat of this mint sauce, and inviting all of Niskayuna to our backyard for a Greek Easter celebration, whole-roasted lamb, spanakopita, and baklava included.

A number of circumstances namely an upcoming move (just a few blocks away, nbd) led me to scale back. Most likely I will be serving my two guests these lamb chops, seasoned with salt, pepper and oregano, broiled for three minutes a side, a meal that takes minutes to prepare, one my mother often made for my siblings and me as children, something I still love today.

A truly simple Easter dinner: broiled lamb chops with mint sauce peasant bread roasted asparagus lemon-ricotta cheesecake for dessert (coming soon).

Incidentally, I desperately need new sheet pans and have been browsing around the web for new ones. So far I’ve purchased one of these quarter sheet pans (this size: 13࡯.625ࡧ.375-inch), and I love it. Never thought I would use this size so much, but it has already been so handy: