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Moroccan Lamb Shanks

by Billie Jean Siddoway 06 Apr 2024 0 Comments

Growing up, our family ate traditional American food. It wasn't until we started experimenting with ground lamb that we came across Moroccan spice blends. Cumin, coriander, and cinnamon taste so good with Grand Teton Lamb. If you don't have all of the spices on hand, substitute extra cumin for coriander, and omit the turmeric or cardamom. The pomegranate molasses is a treat, but you can substitute balsamic glaze or balsamic vinegar if needed. This dish is best made in early winter when pomegranates are in season.


  • 4 lamb shanks
  • 1 Tbs salt
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cardamom
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 3 Tbs pomegranate molasses (substitution: balsamic vinegar)
  • 2 cups liquid (use pomegranate juice, cranberry juice, bright red wine, or chicken broth)
  • 1 cup dried fruit (use cherries, apricots, or figs)
  • Fresh mint leaves, for garnish
  • Pomegranate seeds, for garnish


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. 
  • Pat the lamb shanks dry with paper towels. 
  • Mix salt and spices. Then, rub the spice mixture onto the lamb shanks.
  • In a Dutch oven or high-sided skillet, heat oil at medium-high. Brown the shanks on all sides. Transfer to a plate.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low. Add onions and cook until translucent, about ten minutes. Add a spoonful of water or broth as needed to prevent browning.
  • Add garlic and cook for a minute more.
  • Add the pomegranate molasses, liquid, and dried fruit. Bring to a boil. Then remove from heat.
  • Return the shanks to the pan and cover with a lid or foil.
  • Transfer the shanks to the oven. Cook until tender, about 2 and ½  to 3 hours. Midway, turn the shanks and baste them.
  • Transfer the shanks to a platter, if desired, or serve from the Dutch oven. Garnish with mint leaves and pomegranate seeds.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Serve with couscous or celebration rice.
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