Tender lamb shanks with almond couscous

We present a selection of festive recipes for Rosh Hashanah, and a selection of wines to accompany the meals

By Sharon Lurie, September 16, 2011

If you are a lamb fan this will get your mouth watering - a fusion of soft couscous, crispy almonds and succulent meat.

Serves: 4-8 depending on the size of the lamb shanks. Couscous serves 8.


● Freshly ground black pepper
● 4 lamb shanks (ask your butcher to knick in two places)
● 1 tbsp plain flour
● A little oil for frying


● 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
● 410g can tomatoes, peeled
● 3 celery sticks, chopped
● 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
● 500ml red wine or chicken stock
● Handful of fresh oregano, chopped
● 1 tsp sugar, ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
● 1 tsp grated lemon zest
● 4 sprigs rosemary, picked
● 35g parsley, chopped
● ½ tsp salt


● Grind black pepper over the lamb, then dust with flour.
● Brown the lamb shanks in a frying pan. While browning, blend the sauce ingredients in a processor until smooth.
● Place the lamb in a roasting dish.
● Preheat the oven to 160˚C.
● Pour the sauce into the same pan you used to brown the shanks and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and pour over the lamb. Cover the dish with foil or a lid and roast in the oven for 1½ hours.
● Uncover and roast for a further 1½ hours, basting every 30 minutes. If they aren't getting brown and glazed, increase heat, but don't let them dry out. If they are getting too dry, replace the lid or foil.



● 500g couscous
● 60ml extra virgin olive oil
● 3 sprigs leafy fresh mint chopped
● 500ml chicken stock
● 100g flaked almonds, toasted
● 3 sprigs parsley, chopped


● Mix the couscous with olive oil and mint in a large heat-proof bowl.
● Bring the chicken stock to the boil and pour over the couscous. Cover and leave to stand for 20 minutes. Fluff up the couscous with a fork. Scatter with parsley and almonds before serving.

Adapted from 'Celebrating with the Kosher Buther's Wife' by Sharon Lurie, published by Struik

Last updated: 10:01am, September 16 2011