Pomegranate-Braised Lamb Shanks


Chef Cara Chigazola-Tobin gives lamb Oleana’s signature Arabic-Mediterranean touch with these pomegranate-braised shanks. Sweet and complex pomegranate molasses gets a spicy assist from smoky Turkish chili peppers and hearty tomato paste for an international medley. The slow-cooked lamb shanks are served with the braising liquid-turned-glaze and a handful of pomegranate seeds for texture that pops.


Servings: 4-6


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4-6 lamb shanks
  • 4 onions, large diced
  • 1/4 cup garlic, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 bottle white wine (about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup tomato paste
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon urfa
  • about 8 ounces pomegranate molasses
  • 1 pomegranate, seeded
  • salt


  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat, then cook shanks, in 2 batches, for 5 minutes or until browned all over. Place the shanks in a large baking dish. Set aside.
  2. Add the onions, garlic, celery and carrots to pot. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables are lightly browned. Season with salt and add the white wine. Simmer for 5 minutes to lightly reduce.
  3. Add the tomato paste, brown sugar, urfa and pomegranate molasses. Stir to combine
  4. Add the vegetable mixture to the baking dish with the lamb. Add enough water to just cover the lamb and cover the baking dish with 2 sheets of foil. Wrap tightly. Cook for 2 hours or until meat pulls away from bone easily; the time will depend on the size of the shanks.
  5. Remove the shanks from the braising liquid. (Be careful to keep them intact.) Strain and reserve the cooking liquid.
  6. In a pot, reduce the cooking liquid until it becomes glossy. Pour the sauce over the lamb shanks and garnish with pomegranate seeds.

You may also be interested in