James beard's lamb shanks with beans

Category : Lamb

Yield: 6

Ingredients (Help):
2 c Dried beans 6 tb Olive oil
3 lg Onions 6 Lamb shanks, meaty
3 Cloves 1/4 ts Rosemary, crumbled
1 Bay leaf 1 1/4 c Beef broth
11 Garlic cloves 1 1/4 c Dry red wine
1 tb Salt 6 sl Bacon, lean
1/4 c Unsalted butter 1/2 c Dry bread crumbs

Pinto beans, Great Northerns, or pea beans can be used. Pick over the
beans, and soak them in water to cover by 2 inches overnight, changing
water at least one time. Drain. In a kettle, combine the beans with water
to cover by 1-inch and add one of the onions, stuck with the cloves, the
bay leaf, 8 garlic cloves, and salt. Boil the mixture for 5 minutes, and
then simmer it, covered, for 25-30 minutes, or until the beans are just
tender. Stud lamb shanks with slivers of garlic and rub them down with
crumbled dried rosemary and salt to taste. In a heavy skillet, heat 3 Tbsp
butter and 3 Tbsp oil over mod-high heat. Brown the lamb shanks and season
them with salt and pepper. Add the rosemary, broth, wine, and bring liquid
to a boil. Simmer the shanks, covered, for 60 minutes. In another skillet,
cook the remaining 2 onions, sliced thin, in the remaining 3 Tbsp oil,
until they are lightly browned. Cook them, covered, until they are
softened and season them with salt and pepper.
Drain the beans, reserving the cooking liquid. Put half the beans in an
8-qt. casserole, top them with the onions and the remaining 3 cloves of
garlic, chopped fine. Transfer the shanks to the casserole and top them
with the remaining beans. Pour the lamb braising liquid over all and add
enough of the bean cooking liquid to just cover. Top the casserole with the
bacon strips. Cook it, uncovered, in the middle of a preheated 350f oven
for 60 minutes. Sprinkle the top of the mixture with bread crumbs. Dot with
the remaining butter, cut into bits. Bake the mixture, uncovered, for
20-25 minutes or until the bread crumbs are golden. a 1970
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