Braised Veal Shanks with Five-Spice & Ginger
these asian-inspired lamb shanks are wrapped and baked in individual foil 
packets, then placed atop bowls of steamed rice. serve with stir-fried bok 
choy or other chinese greens. what to drink: asian lager beer or a fruity 
red zinfandel. 
12   dried shiitake mushrooms
2-1/2 cup  boiling water
1   3inchlong piece fresh ginger, peeled, thickly sliced
3   garlic cloves, peeled
3/4 cup  coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
4-1/2 Tbsp  black bean garlic sauce*
6 tsp  peanut oil
1-1/2 tsp  chinese five-spice powder**
6 large  lamb shanks (about 1 pound each), excess fat trimmed
3/4 cup  thinly sliced green onions
3/4 cup  dry sherry
  steamed white rice
place mushrooms in bowl. pour boiling water over; let soak until mushrooms 
soften, at least 45 minutes and up to 4 hours. strain mixture, reserving 1 
1/2 cups soaking liquid. cut stems from mushrooms and discard; thinly 
slice caps. with food processor running, add ginger and garlic and finely 
chop. add cilantro, black bean sauce, 2 teaspoons peanut oil, and 
five-spice powder. process until paste forms, occasionally scraping down 
sides of work bowl. using sharp knife, cut 5 small shallow slits into each 
lamb shank, spacing apart; rub generous 1 tablespoon black bean-cilantro 
paste into slits and all over surface of each shank. (mushrooms and lamb 
shanks can be prepared 6 hours ahead. cover mushrooms, soaking liquid and 
shanks separately and chill.) 
preheat oven to 325 f. cut six 18-inch squares of aluminum foil; place on 
work surface. place green onions and sliced mushroom caps in center of 
each foil square, dividing equally. heat remaining 4 teaspoons peanut oil 
in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. working in batches, add lamb 
shanks and cook until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch. place 
1 lamb shank atop green onions and mushrooms on each foil square. 
pour reserved mushroom soaking liquid and sherry into same skillet. boil 
until liquid is reduced to 3/4 cup, scraping up any browned bits from 
bottom of skillet, about 10 minutes. spoon 2 tablespoons reduced liquid 
over each lamb shank, pulling up foil around shanks to prevent liquid from 
spilling out. enclose shanks completely in foil, twisting foil to seal; 
place on large rimmed baking sheet. 
bake lamb shanks until very tender and meat almost falls off bones, about 
2 hours. open up foil packets; place each atop bowl of steamed rice, 
allowing diners to remove foil. 
* available at asian markets and in the asian foods section of 
** a blend of ground anise, cinnamon, star anise, cloves, and ginger; 
available in the spice section of most supermarkets. 
makes 6 servings. 
bon appitit 
(ID: 12125) Mirror: Mon, Jun 23, 2003

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