There are so many divine elements to this dinner that it is difficult to decide on a favorite: the veggies, the sauce, the shank, the spices, the gremolata. For the veggies, we are using Kohlrabi instead of other high carb veg options that will keep the keto police happy. Kohlrabi is a biennial vegetable and are in the same family as cabbage, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts. It can be eaten raw or cooked. Once cup has 8g of carbs with 4.9g of fiber netting only 3.1g of carbs! So awesome.
You could cook this in a slow cooker but with the instant pot, you can have this on your table much, mush faster. Let’s get it going!
2 lamb shanks, bone in
4 slices bacon, diced
1 cup chicken broth
1 can whole tomatoes, 14 oz
1/2 cup kohlrabi, diced
1 small carrot, diced
1 small leek, diced (white part only)
3 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tbsp. chipotle pepper powder
1 tsp pink salt
1 tsp black pepper
For the veggie side dish:
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup kohlrabi
1 cup broccoli rabe
For the gremolata:
2 tsp. cilantro, finely chopped
1 garlic cloves, pressed
Zest from one lime
Pat your shanks dry with a paper towel. Season generously with salt and pepper. Set your Instant Pot to sauté on high. Add 1 tbsp. of olive oil to the pan and let it heat up for about a minute. Place shanks in pot and let sear two minutes per side. I had to do this in batches because my shanks were fairly large. Remove shanks from pot and set aside.
Place chopped bacon in the pot and let the fat begin to render. You don’t want it super crispy, just cooked through. Add the carrot, Kohlrabi, and leek. Allow to saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then add a pat of butter and stir. Scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon or spatula. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
Add the canned tomatoes. I found this lovely little can of Italian cherry tomatoes but use any whole tomatoes you like, looking for the lowest carb/sugar available. Break up the tomatoes with the wooden spoon or spatula.
Add chicken stock and stir everything together. Add the shanks back into the pan.
Secure the lid, making sure the vent is set to closed. Set pressure cooker to high pressure and set the timer to 50 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes and then carefully move the pressure valve to quick release.
While those shanks are a-cookin, let’s make some awesome veggies! Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium high heat in a large pan. Add the diced kohlrabi and broccoli rabe. Let those veggies sear for about 5 minutes without stirring. This will allow the veggies to brown and get some really wonderful crust action.
Now stir the veggies and repeat.
While those shanks are a-cookin, let’s make some awesome veggies! Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium high heat in a large pan. Add the diced kohlrabi and broccoli rabe. Let those veggies sear for about 3 minutes without stirring. This will allow the veggies to brown and get some really wonderful crust action. Continue cooking for 5 more minutes or until they are soft. The kohlrabi was still a little firm which was really nice.
Once the pressure is completely released (make sure the pin has dropped), carefully remove the lid. Remove the shanks from the pot. The meat is going to be super tender by now so you may need to use two tongs or spoons. You can see how the bone came right out of one of the shanks! The shanks and sauce will be smelling so incredible that you might have to do a little taste test.
Ok, ok, we are in the absolutely amazing lamb shank deliciousness home stretch!! Scoop out about a spoonful of the veggies and set aside. Using an immersion hand blender, blend up the veggies and liquids until smooth. If you don’t have a hand blender, use a food processor or regular blender.
Now let’s make a gremolata. I love making this for braised meats. It adds a brightness and earthiness that goes so well with the richness of the dish. Normally I use parsley, garlic and lemon but since this was made with chipotle pepper powder, I will be using cilantro, garlic and lime. Finely chop the cilantro and zest the lime. I love using a microplane for zesting but you can also peel the lime and then mince it. Mix ingredients together in a small bowl. You don’t need to add any oil because the herbs and garlic have enough natural liquids.
Serve by layering the bottom of your dish with the sautéed kohlrabi and broccoli rabe, then add the shank and cover with the reserved braised veggies and tons of sauce. Finish with a scoop of the gremolata. You cannot over sauce this thing, and believe me when I tell you that you will want to continue to add more sauce as you eat. It is that good!
Enjoy your yummy, yummy braised shank!