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JAMES BEARD'S LAMB SHANKS WITH BEANS

Category:    Meats, Vegetables
Yield:6 servings
 
      2 c  Dried beans                         6 tb Olive oil
      3 lg Onions                              6    Lamb shanks, meaty
      3    Cloves                            1/4 ts Rosemary, crumbled
      1    Bay leaf                        1 1/4 c  Beef broth
     11    Garlic cloves                   1 1/4 c  Dry red wine
      1 tb Salt                                6 sl Bacon, lean
    1/4 c  Unsalted butter                   1/2 c  Dry bread crumbs
 
  Pinto beans, Great Northerns, or pea beans can be used.  Pick over the
  beans, and soak them in water to cover by 2 inches overnight, changing
  water at least one time.  Drain. In a kettle, combine the beans with water
  to cover by 1-inch and add one of the onions, stuck with the cloves, the
  bay leaf, 8 garlic cloves, and salt. Boil the mixture for 5 minutes, and
  then simmer it, covered, for 25-30 minutes, or until the beans are just
  tender. Stud lamb shanks with slivers of garlic and rub them down with
  crumbled dried rosemary and salt to taste.  In a heavy skillet, heat 3 Tbsp
  butter and 3 Tbsp oil over mod-high heat.  Brown the lamb shanks and season
  them with salt and pepper.  Add the rosemary, broth, wine, and bring liquid
  to a boil.  Simmer the shanks, covered, for 60 minutes. In another skillet,
  cook the remaining 2 onions, sliced thin, in the remaining 3 Tbsp oil,
  until they are lightly browned.  Cook them, covered, until they are
  softened and season them with salt and pepper. Drain the beans, reserving
  the cooking liquid.  Put half the beans in an 8-qt. casserole, top them
  with the onions and the remaining 3 cloves of garlic, chopped fine.
  Transfer the shanks to the casserole and top them with the remaining beans.
  Pour the lamb braising liquid over all and add enough of the bean cooking
  liquid to just cover. Top the casserole with the bacon strips. Cook it,
  uncovered, in the middle of a preheated 350f oven for 60 minutes. Sprinkle
  the top of the mixture with bread crumbs. Dot with the remaining butter,
  cut into bits.  Bake the mixture, uncovered, for 20-25 minutes or until the
  bread crumbs are golden. a 1970 Gourmet Mag. favorite.
 

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