Today was a nice fall day. The sun was shining for the most part. Then I got off work to a cold, windy and dark evening. I rode my bike home, pushing hard against the wind and blowing on my cold fingers (yes even with my gloves on). I was warmer by the time I got home. But not as warm as I felt the minute I walked in the door.
The house was filled with warmth from the heat of the crock pot, to the dim lighting, and the smell of comfort food. I was immediately handed a glass of wine, 2006 Vina Carmen Cab Sauvignon Classic, a recommendation from the Best Value Wines of 2009 article in Ottawa Magazine (have I mentioned before how much I love this magazine? – and this month is the Best Restaurants 2009 edition!). As I sipped the wine, a spoonful of rich, velvety sauce hovered in front of me. “Try this” my husband said. Enamoured with this full-flavoured concoction, I almost fell to the floor when I found out that lamb shanks had been slowly cooking in it since 11am this morning.
My husband placed two browned lamb shanks in the crock pot along with some port (roughly 2 cups), chopped onions that were almost caramelized by this point, celery, beef bouillon (roughly 3 squirts), 4 garlic cloves and a bunch of sprigs of thyme. I need to remind everyone that my husband does not measure anything. For me to get even these rough estimates is like pulling teeth. But at least they can give somewhat of a guideline.
A dense wad of potato mash was thrown onto my plate before smothering it with the lamb and sauce. As you can imagine, the lamb was so moist it almost didn't even require chewing. Fresh cilantro for the garnish added a nice, crisp contrast.
Ahhh, have I mentioned how awesome my husband is!? This was a truly fantastic meal.