Spicy Lamb Shanks


  • 2 large oranges
  • 1 1/4 cups beef broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 5 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch lengths
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling onions, peeled*
  • 4 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 4 pounds lamb foreshanks (3 to 4)
  • 2 3-inch cinnamon sticks
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup pitted kalamata or other black olives, halved if desired
  • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh cilantro



  • Using a vegetable peeler, remove the orange part of the peel from 1 of the oranges . Cut the peel into thin strips (should have about 1/4 cup); set aside. Squeeze the juice from both oranges to make about 2/3 cup. In a small bowl stir together orange juice, broth, cardamom, cumin, salt, turmeric, and pepper. Set aside.
  • Place carrots, onions, and garlic in the bottom of a 5- to 6-quart crockery cooker. Top with lamb shanks, strips of orange peel, and cinnamon sticks. Pour orange juice mixture over all. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 8 to 9 hours or until lamb pulls easily from the bone.
  • When ready to serve,transfer the lamb shanks and vegetables to a serving   dish using a slotted spoon. Skim the fat from the cooking liquid. Remove and discard the cinnamon sticks. Measure 1 1/2 cups juices; transfer to a small saucepan. Combine water and cornstarch; add to saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Spoon sauce over lamb and vegetables. Sprinkle with olives and cilantro. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
  • To make it easier to peel onions, place onions in a saucepan with water. Bring to boiling and cook for 30 seconds. Slice off the root ends and squeeze onions from peels.


Prepare orange peel and orange juice mixture as above in Step 1. Place lamb shanks in a 5- to 6-quart Dutch oven. Top with orange peel and cinnamon sticks. Pour orange juice mixture over all. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Top with carrots, onions, and garlic. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes to 1 hour longer or until meat and vegetables are tender. Continue as in Step 3 except prepare and thicken the sauce in the Dutch oven.