LAMB SHANKS BRAISED IN WHITE WINE, BLACK OLIVES AND ORANGES WITH SOFT POLENTA (stinco di agnello con aranci e olive, for four)
4 large, meaty lamb shanks, rinsed and patted dry
salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 red onions, cut into ¼ inch dice
12 cloves garlic
1 navel orange, cut into 8 wedges
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
½ cup gaeta olives
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup Mario’s marinara
1 cup chicken stock
zest of one naval orange
soft polenta for serving
- Put rack in lower third of oven and preheat oven to 375*.
- Season the shanks liberally with salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over high heat until smoking. Reduce the heat and sear the shanks, in batches if necessary, turning occasionally, until well browned, about 8 minutes per batch. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Add the onions, garlic and orange wedges to the pot and cook until the garlic is softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the rosemary, olives, wine, tomato sauce and stock and bring to a boil.
- Replace the lamb shanks in the pot and return to a boil. Cover tightly, place in the oven and cook for 1-1/2 hours, until the meat is fork-tender.
- Allow the shanks to rest for 10 minutes in the sauce, then transfer to warmed plates atop a bed of soft polenta.
adapted from Mario Batali, Molto Italiano