As I was searching for a different type of lamb recipe I came across one recipe for steamed lamb. I also found myself longing for mexican food, as I often do. I combined this recipe from Claudia Rodin’s book THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN COOKING and Robert’s Santibanez’ book TRULY MEXICAN. It is simple steamed lamb shank in parchment paper. If you haven’t discovered lamb shank yet, it is one of the leanest cuts of meat, with only 6 grams of fat per serving. What’s more, when finished, the lamb will fall off of the bone and is beautiful enough to eat right away, with a colorful Quinoa Salad, or, as I did, pulled from the bone (it will fall off easily) and placed on tacos, or refrigerate for quick and easy taquito lunches. If you’re thinking of having a party, it’s beautiful enough to serve to guests in a decorative bowl one lamb shank per guest. As always, my recipes are free of the top 8 allergens as defined by the FDA, gluten-free, and, well, you let me know if you think this recipe is kid friendly.
STEAMED LAMB IN PARCHMENT PAPER
1 Lamb Shank (1 pound or over)
Your favorite spices, or salsa (I used home made salsa verde, but one can easily use jarred salsa roja or cumin or a combination)
2 sheets of parchment paper per lamb shank
1 piece of kitchen twine per lamb shank
Water or broth
I made the lamb shank in the pressure cooker with a pasta insert, but one can easily steam it in a large pot on the stovetop with a steamer bottom, just make sure you check and add water every so often to make sure it hasn’t completely boiled off. The lamb shank took about 1 hour in the pressure cooker, but will take 2 – 3 hours in a stove-top steamer. Don’t be afraid to crowd your shanks if you’re making more than one.
Rinse the shank with cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels, place in a glass or pyrex pan, and salt and pepper liberally. Place in the fridge for 8 – 24 hours.
Take two peices of parchment paper and cross them, place wide part of the leg in the center, and hold the smaller part of the bone with your other hand as you slather the meaty part of the shank with your salsa, or spice mixture. Then, wrap the partchment around the shank and tie it tightly.
Boil water. Place the shank(s) on top of the steamer above the water and cover with a tight fitting lid. Steam for 2 – 3 hours or until the meat falls off of the bone, checking the water every so often and adding more if it has boiled off.
Remove from the pot, place in a wide bowl, and open up the parchment. Serve hot with quinoa, salad, or with tortillas and taco fixings.