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Nigella Lawson’s Aromatic lamb shank stew

Delight in the aromatic and comforting embrace of Nigella Lawson’s Aromatic Lamb Shank Stew. Tender lamb shanks are lovingly braised with a medley of fragrant spices, herbs, and vegetables, resulting in a rich and flavorful stew.

The slow cooking process infuses the meat with incredible tenderness, making it the perfect centerpiece for a hearty and soul-warming meal.

Serves: 6

Prep Time: 15 min

Cooking Time: 25min


  • 8 lamb shanks
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 sprinkling of salt
  • 1 tbsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg (freshly grated)
  • black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp garam marsala spice blend
  • 6 tbsp red lentils
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil (or groundnut oil)



  • 3 tablespoons chopped pistachios (or chopped blanched almonds)


Step 1: Brown the lamb

Put 3 tablespoons of the oil into a very large, wide, heavy-bottomed pan and warm over medium heat. Brown the lamb shanks, in batches, in the pan and then remove to a roasting tin or whatever else you’ve got to hand to sit them in.

Step 2: Fry off the aromatics

Peel the onions and garlic and process in a food processor or chop them finely by hand. Add the remaining oil to the pan, and fry the onion-garlic mush until soft, sprinkling salt over to stop it catching. Stir in the turmeric, ground ginger, chilli, cinnamon and nutmeg, and season with some freshly ground pepper.

Step 3: Add the flavours

Stir again, adding the honey, soy sauce and Marsala.

Step 4: Stew the lamb

Put the shanks back in the pan, add cold water almost to cover, bring to the boil then put a lid on the pan, lower the heat and simmer very gently for 1-1½ hours or until the meat is tender.

Step 5: Add the lentils

Add the red lentils and cook for about 20 minutes longer without the lid, until the lentils have softened into the sauce, and the juices have reduced and thickened slightly.


Once the lentils have cooked, check the seasoning.

Step 6: Serve and enjoy!

Toast the nuts by heating them for a few minutes in a dry frying pan, and sprinkle onto the lamb as you serve it.

Originally appears: https://www.nigella.com/recipes/aromatic-lamb-shank-stew