This week I am concentrating on “comfort food”… what is a comfort food??? I am sure it is probably something different for everyone. What is my number one comfort food? I think it is probably smooth mashed potato, with lots of butter and salt. So it stands to reason, any dish I cook for this challenge needs to include a side of mashed potato.
What else do I include as a comfort food… Bangers and Mash with Caramalised Onion, is absolutely top of my list. Slow cooker meals have a tendency to fall into that hearty, warm your soul comfort food category, so a Lamb Shank or Osso Bucco would have to be there for me.
I do love a good Pumpkin Soup with a hot crusty roll when things are feeling less than wonderful. Home cooked is a must.
Given that all my comfort foods are winter warmers, I just have to hope I never need to employ them in the heat of Summer.
I asked around to find out what other peoples comfort foods are, the answers I got were very similar to my own, it seems we all like something pretty stodgy. Another interesting food which came up as a great comfort food was chocolate! I can fully agree with that choice also, although as the friend mentioned it has to be rich and gooey and completely indulgent.
So as I contemplate “what is a comfort food?” I am smelling the aroma of a delicious lamb shank cooking away in my slow cooker. The aroma is a warming, cozy and very much a comfortable feeling. This delicious smell will permeate the kitchen for the remainder of the day, and I have had to do know more than chop and onion and throw ingredients in the cooker. I love it when you get maximum joy, with minimum effort in cooking.
I have to thank Elizabeth for this amazingly simple and luscious recipe. Even while it was cooking the family commented on how great it smells. When Brett was eating dinner he commented that he wanted to drink the gravy like a cup of tea!
Of course a “Comfort Food” would not be complete without a bit of creamy mashed potato on the side.
- 4 Lamb Shanks
- 1 large onion (I use red ones, seriously roughly chopped, I just cut it into quarters or eighths because you strain it out later)
- 4 cloves of garlic, again roughly chopped
- 1 cup beef stock
- 1 cup red wine (either a shiraz or cab sav, something gutsy)
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 3 t/s cornflour
- 3 T/s water
- [url href=”http://gourmetgetaways.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Maple-Syrup-Lamb-Shank-2.jpg”][img src=”http://gourmetgetaways.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Maple-Syrup-Lamb-Shank-2.jpg” width=”240″ height=”160″ class=”aligncenter size-full” title=”Maple Syrup Lamb Shank-2″ alt=”Maple Syrup Lamb Shank-2″][/url]
- [cap id=”attachment_4809″ align=”aligncenter” width=”240″][url href=”http://gourmetgetaways.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Maple-Syrup-Lamb-Shanks-21.jpg”][img src=”http://gourmetgetaways.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Maple-Syrup-Lamb-Shanks-21.jpg” width=”240″ height=”160″ class=” size-full” title=”Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks-2″ alt=”Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks-2″][/url]Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks-2[/cap]
- I am a lazy cook so I didn’t do the first step of frying the shanks off. But if you want to you can dust the shank in seasoned flour and fry them off to get a bit of colour.
- Throw all the ingredients in a slow cooker until done (all day) or
- Maple Syrup Lamb Shank-3
- Throw it all together and bake in the oven covered or with double foil over the top of the dish for about 3 hours at about 180 degrees or slightly lower in a fan forced oven.
- When the shanks are cooked take them out and keep warm, strain the liquid into a pot.
- Mix cornflour and water and stir through the gravy. Simmer on the stove, and reduce on the stovetop until it is the consistency of gravy you like.
I hope this recipe helps you get through the winter chill. What is your favourite recipe to keep the cold at bay??