It’s technically Summer. I know I moan about the weather a LOT but seriously, it’s got its shit so utterly out of gear that I despair of ever really being warm again. Or, at least, warm for more than a day or so in a row. Currently spitting with rain, blowing a gale, requiring actual proper jackets if you venture outside. As I write this Mum is at the park walking the dog. I fully expect them to return telling tales of being tornado’d to another, mystical land.
Boyfriend has returned to work after 2 weeks of paternity leave, looking suitably unrefreshed and, I hope, garnering enough sympathy from colleagues to make up for the lost sleep NewHuman is presently responsible for.
I’m at home, habitually checking gmail for work emails that no longer arrive. It’s weird.
Right, so cause the weather is foul I have made a stew. I vaguely recall having seen the recipe ages ago on something called Daddy Cooks or similar. Terrible name. Anyway this is my version. Easy, contains booze, is cheap and unctuous. Take that, Summer, you bitch.
4 smallish foreleg shanks. Get whatever ones you want. Foreshanks were all that I had available to me.
1 brown onion
2 or so carrots. More if you like carrots
2-3 sticks of celery
3-4 cloves garlic
2-3 bottles of that little single serve wine you can get. I think really 3 is too much. I used 3. Mum doesn’t drink. I’ll let you know how that turned out.
Salt and pepper
Sage, rosemary, thyme – handful of each
Pancetta cubes, a tub of pre-chopped, or chop your own. I don’t mind which.
Tablespoon or so of plain flour
Pre-heat your oven to 170C or equivalent.
Chop as seen above, whilst you brown the shanks in a casserole dish. Oven-proof dish, please.
On the stove-top, brown in a good glug of olive oil and a knob of butter. When browned, set aside for a sec.
Throw in the pancetta for a minute or so, then add all the vegetables and the garlic. Stir and soften for maybe 3-5 mins or so.
Add the flour and stir around. It’ll go a bit gloopy. Add the wine and herbs, stir and then put the shanks on top of all the saucy veg stuff. I added a bit more water here as I think I’ve made enough gravy for twice as many shanks.
Then put the lid on and shove in the oven after it’s come to a simmer. In my case the baby woke up. Made it difficult to pick up the buggery-heavy dish.
Put the baby down somewhere safe and appropriate. Definitely not the kitchen bench. No way.
Then stick the dish in the oven. It’ll take about 3hrs. Check it a couple of times, adding water if you need to.
Serve with mash. Also with cabbage is nice. We have some in the fridge that needs eating but I can’t be bothered prepping it.