Lamb Shank Pie – Winter Heaven

This is comfort food; as good as it gets. This recipe is really too big for Lucas and me, but I usually serve it for a crowd in winter, for lunch or dinner. The leftovers are remarkably good in the microwave at work. I usually serve it with something simple, like grilled zucchini.

I am calling this leftover lamb shanks, but the reality is you will need to make a lot of it to use it for something else and then have enough leftovers for this. I make them specifically the day before.

The savoury tart dough is short and delicious – I use it for a multitude of recipes.

INGREDIENTS – Savoury Tart Dough:

  • 1.5 cups of plain flour
  • Salt
  • 150 grams of cold, unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons of ice water

INGREDIENTS – Pie Filling:

  • 700 grams (or thereabouts) of leftover lamb shank meat
  • A handful of mint and rosemary leaves
  • 2 tablespoons of gravox (I’m not precious)
  • Rosemary to garnish on top
  • Rock salt crystals
  • One egg or milk for a wash on the pastry


Make the pastry.

By hand (on the yacht):

In a large bowl, stir the flour and half a teaspoon of salt. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until the texture resembles coarse cornmeal, with the butter no larger than small peas. Slowly begin adding the water, stirring and tossing with a fork until the dough comes together.

By mixer (at home):

In your food processor, stir together the flour and salt. Add the chopped butter and mix on a slow speed until it represents coarse cornmeal. Slowly begin adding the ice water and mix on slow speed until the dough just holds together.

HACK: you can freeze the pastry at this stage for up to a month.

For the filling.

Put the lamb shanks and herbs in a large saucepan. Put 2 tablespoons of gravox into a cup, and add a small amount of water, and stir to remove any lumps. Then add fill the cup with water and mix it through. Add it to the saucepan and heat through until the mixture thickens.

Cut the dough into two parts, one third, and two thirds. Roll out the larger portion and spread it into an (approximately) 23 cm springform pan. Fill with the lamb mixture. Roll out the top, and lay over the top, pinching the pastry together.

Then wash the pastry, with either the whisked egg or milk. I then sprinkle rosemary leaves on top, and if you would like, a small amount of rock salt. It really makes the top look great!

Bake for 45 minutes, until the pastry is cooked and golden.

Take out of the oven and let rest for ten minutes. Then remove the top of the springform pan (with your fingers crossed that there are no leaks in the pastry!). Cut at the table and serve.