Sluggish cook lamb shanks to fill this standard shortcrust suet pastry pie with a light twist – include greens and lots of herbs
Ingredients: 2 tablespoon sunflower or rapeseed oil,4-5 lamb shanks,2 onions, sliced,2 rosemary sprigs, leaves finely sliced,2 thyme sprigs,300 ml white wine,1 1/2 l good-quality chicken stock,25 g butter,3 tablespoon plain flour,250 g frozen pea,5 spring onions, finely sliced, small lot parsley, carefully chopped, little bunch mint, finely sliced,1 egg, beaten,400 g plain flour, plus a little extra for dusting,100 g butter, diced,100 g suet
Directions: Heat the oil in a big flameproof casserole dish and brown the lamb shanks well all over (you may require to do this in batches). Transfer the lamb to a plate. Lower the heat, tip the onions into the meal and gently soften, including a splash more oil if you require to. Stir in the rosemary for the final 1 minutes, then add the thyme and white wine. Bring to a strong simmer, scraping all the lamb bits off the bottom of the dish as you go– these will include great deals of flavour. When the red wine has boiled for 1 minutes, add the stock, return the shanks and any juices, and gently bring to a simmer. Cover with a tight-fitting cover, minimize the heat a little and cook till the meat is extremely tender and falling from the bone– this can take 2-3 hrs. Leave till cool adequate to deal with. Can be done 24 hrs ahead, covered and cooled, or frozen for approximately a month., Raise the shanks out of the stock (at this phase you can spoon off any fat that has separated to the surface). Carefully pull the meat off the bones in good big pieces, discarding any fatty bits, and put in a pie dish– about 30 x 20 cm and 5cm deep will be huge enough., Put the stock back on the heat and boil fiercely till minimized by simply under half. In a big frying pan, melt the butter, then stir in the flour to a paste and prepare for 1-2 minutes. Gradually whisk in ladlefuls of the reduced stock up until you have a smooth sauce. Bubble for a couple of minutes to thicken up perfectly (the sauce will thin a little when cooked in the pie). Taste for seasoning, then tip over the lamb., To make the pastry, put the flour, butter, suet and 1 tsp salt in a food processor, and whizz together until no swellings of fat remain. With the motor running, slowly gather 150 ml water to bring the pastry together– you might require 1 tsp more water. Tip onto a lightly floured work surface area and carefully bring together to a smooth dough, then present till simply over 0.5 cm thick., Add the frozen peas, spring onions, parsley and mint to the lamb, and carefully blend to combine. Brush the rim of the dish with a little egg, then cut thin strips of pastry and stick them on the rim, like an image frame. Raise the rest of the pastry onto the pie and press down to the edges to stick. Trim the excess and crimp the edges to seal well. Make a little cross in the centre with a knife to help steam escape, and roll the trimmings into leaves, if you like. Stick these all over the pie, again using egg, to embellish. Can now be cooled for another 24 hrs or frozen for up to a month., Heat oven to 200 C/180 C fan/gas 6. Brush the entire pie with more egg, then bake for 40-45 mins till truly golden and crisp.