Oven Slaving with Mrs Woog – Sticky Chilli Shanks

Say STICKY CHILLI SHANKS out loud ten times. If you can do this, you can master my recipe for one of the yummiest made up dishes I have ever come up with. And with a cold weekend around these parts it is the perfect thing to eat, washed down with a big glass of red. (note to self, apply for a scriptwriting position at Better Homes and Gardens…)

Let’s do this, shall we? As always, I taste as I go, and all quantities are approximate.


  • Lamb shanks – one per person and one for the pot
  • Salt n Pepa’s (here and we’re in effect, want you to push it babe.)
  • 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  • Honey
  • Glass of red
  • I litre chicken stock
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 sticks celery
  • 1 onion

Ok so get the shanks into a plastic bag (usually they will come from the butchers in one, one would hope) Into the bag drizzle some olive oil and a massive whack of salt n pepa. Give it a good smoosh around. Turn on your slow cooker and get out your Prue and Trude Le Crussiet, or any other less obnoxious heavy based pan. Into the pan goes your shanks. You want to RENDER THE FAT and get them to a really nice colour.

Once done, stick them into the slow cooker. Get 5 cloves of garlic,(you do not need to peel if you cannot be fucked) and chuck them into the slow cooker. Now back to your pan….

A little olive oil and stuck in your diced carrot, onion and celery. If you wanted to be completely evil, you could add a little bacon at this point. Get them all sweated up, about 5 minutes should do it then add in your cayenne powder. Could also use fresh or flaked chilli here. stir it around and let it infuse for a bit.

Turn that pan up high and add a glass of wine to DEGLAZE THAT PAN MAN! Use a spoon to scrape off any bits of lamb and crap that may have been leftover. Once the wine has reduced, add in a litre of chicken stock. Let THAT reduce by half before pouring in half a cup of honey.

Give it all a good stir and have a taste. The sweetness will hit you first then BAM, in comes that chilli. I could actually drink this as a soup, if I felt so inclined.

Ask yourself… “Does it need some more PUSH IT….. PUSH IT REAL GOOD…” and them pour that sticky, chilli goodness over the resting shanks. Stir it though, pop on the lid and go and find something to do for about 4 hours. I suggest Pilates.

Come back and there you go. Dinner DONE! Serve with mash (we have talked about mash before) and some crusty bread.

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For more of my Oven Slaving series, please click here.