The topic of the week for me is comfort food! When it gets cold I want something deliciously warm and comforting, slow-cooked meals are at the top of the list. These Slow Cooked Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks are always highly requested!
My number one comfort food at the moment is smooth buttery mashed potato, with pink Himalayan salt. Yes, I am very specific! But I can’t just eat mash potato, so I am making another favourite comfort food, one which goes amazingly well with a side of mashed potato.
Slow Cooked Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks is one of my most popular recipes on Gourmet Getaways during winter. When I looked at the images I tended to cringe. I had only been blogging one year when I released the recipe so the images were not fantastic. I have given the images a revamp and re-jigged the story a little.
What else do I usually include in my list of comfort foods? Bangers and Mash with Caramelized Onion is absolutely top of my list. Slow cooker meals have a tendency to fall into that hearty, warm your soul comfort food category, any Lamb Shank or Osso Bucco would have to be there for me.
Given that all my comfort foods are winter warmers, I hope I never need to employ them in the heat of Summer.
I asked around to find out what other people’s comfort foods are, the answers I got were very similar to my own, it seems we all like something cooked low and slow with a side of mash.
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.
As I contemplate “what is a comfort food?” I’m smelling the aroma of my delicious slow cooked maple syrup lamb shanks cooking away in the oven. The aroma is a warming, cozy and very much a comfortable feeling. I decided to cook this dish in the oven instead of the slow cooker so that I could give oven instructions for anyone who doesn’t have a slow cooker.
The delicious smell will permeate the kitchen for the whole day. Even though the dish is cooked in the oven it needs no more attention than the slow cooker.
I love it when you get maximum joy from food, with the minimum effort in cooking.
Even while it was cooking the family commented on how great it smells.
Slow Cooked Maple Syrup Lamb Shanks
- 4 Lamb Shanks
- 1 large onion (roughly chopped, I just cut it into quarters or eighths because you blend the sauce later)
- 4 cloves of garlic, again roughly chopped
- 1 cup beef stock
- 1 cup red wine
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 4 star anise
- 1 shallot (sliced and fried to garnish)
- 1 Tbs cornflour
- 1/4 cup water
- Preheat oven to 125C/260F.
- Throw all the ingredients in a baking tray except the cornflour and water.
- Cover the tray tightly with foil and bake in the oven for about 5-6 hours.
- The shanks are cooked when the meat is falling off the bone. Take the lamb shanks out of the oven and keep warm.
- Strain the liquid into a saucepan.
- Remove the star anise and blitz the sauce with a stick blender.
- Put the sauce on the stove to boil and reduce. Reduce the sauce until the volume has halved.
- Mix cornflour and water and stir through the gravy. Simmer on the stove until thickened.
- Pour the gravy over the lamb shanks and serve with fried shallot to garnish and mashed potato.
I hope you try this recipe. It is one of my favourites to make and eat. Tell me, readers what is your favourite comfort food?