Braised Beef Shanks

Braised Beef Shanks w/ Braised Red Kale & Brown Rice

It's that time of year - when it feels like Fall.  I actually like Fall, because that means winter is on its way, which really means a trip down south!

After a chilly 3-pitch game, we felt like something hearty for dinner.  What else says Fall like braised meat?  I was hoping to find some oxtail, but no luck.  I happily settled for some meaty looking beef shanks (which just happened to be on sale).

The humble flavours that can be coaxed out of braised meats, never ceases to amaze.

I seasoned the shanks with salt and pepper and dusted very lightly with some flour.  I browned them in about 1 tablespoon of bacon fat - yes, I save bacon fat and am proud of it!

Next I added some simple aromatics, herbs and spices to the pot - onions, garlic, tomatoes, a sprig of rosemary, dried savoury, allspice, a whole dried red chile and dried thyme.  The quantities here are not really important - it's what flavours you like - good time to experiment.  Just make sure to encourage the flavours out of your ingredients with some heat - give them time to cook, time to yield their goodness and make your sauce even more impressive.

I then placed the shanks back in the pot, poured in enough water to cover, brought to a simmer and let cook for 2-1/2 hrs.

The results speak for themselves.  Fork-tender morsels of beef, and a wonderful rich, savoury broth.

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