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Braised Blasket Island Lamb Shanks

Ingredients
4 Blasket Island lamb shanks – from Jerry Kennedy butchers, Dingle, if possible
1 carrot
1 leek
2 sticks of celery
1 onion
4 cloves of garlic
1 bottle of shiraz
2 litres of brown lamb stock
4 sprigs of rosemary

Method
Peel and dice the vegetables. Sweat off in a heavy-based pot and add the red wine; reduce down until syrupy. Season the lamb shanks and seal all around in a hot pan, then add them to your wine reduction. Pour in your brown lamb stock making sure to cover the lamb shanks. Bring to the boil, skim and reduce down to a very low simmer.
Add the rosemary, cover with a lid and braise for two-and-a-half hours. When finished, remove from the heat. Pick out the shanks and place in a serving dish. Pass the braising juices through a fine sieve, check the seasoning, pour over the shanks and serve.

Recipe from Noel Enright of The Chart House

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Roast Blasket Island Lamb
with a Cashel Blue. Walnut & Chive Butter

Ingredients
1 Leg of Blasket Island Lamb
1 glass white wine
454g (one large packet) Irish butter
75g mature Cashel Blue cheese
25g walnuts
Bunch of chives, finely chopped
Peanut oil or olive oil
12 cloves of garlic
1 bag of young spinach
1kg potatoes, boiled & mashed
Bunch of fresh parsley
Fresh rosemary
Salt & black pepper
Bay leaves
1 egg
Method
Heat some oil in a pan and add a little of the butter to it. Then add the leg to that, browning it all over. Season lightly with salt and to your taste with pepper. Cover generously with rosemary and bay leaves and place in an oven preheated to 180°C. Then make the Cashel Blue butter. Loosen 400g of the butter with the back of a fork, then finely crumble the cheese into it and add the chives. Chop the walnuts roughly and incorporate them into the butter mixture. Combine all the ingredients thoroughly, then spoon the mixture onto a sheet of aluminium foil and fashion the butter into the shape of a sausage. Wrap the foil around the butter, twist each end like a Christmas Cracker and place in the freezer.
Put the cloves of garlic, still in their skins, into a pot of boiling water. After about five minutes, remove the cloves but keep the water for the spinach. The potatoes should be mashed very well so that there are no lumps. Add the egg to the potatoes, then a drizzle of olive oil, salt & pepper. Combine all these ingredients and keep warm.
The leg of lamb should be roasted pink after about 45 minutes, or longer if you want it cooked more. About ten minutes before it is ready, place the blanched garlic cloves around the lamb. When the meat is ready, remove it from the oven and leave to one side for fifteen minutes before carving.
Return the pan to the heat and add the wine to the pan juices with a little butter. Swirl over the flame to form a simple herb-flavoured sauce. Strain and reserve. Blanch, drain and season the spinach. Carve the lamb. Place some of the mash on the plate, put the spinach on top, and finally the lamb. Drizzle a little of the sauce around this. Place three of the garlic cloves around the plate. Remove the butter from the freezer, slice, and place as much as desired on the lamb slices.

from ‘Around Ireland With A Pan’ by Eamonn O’Cathain

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Herb-crusted rack of Spring Blasket Island Lamb with tomato basil jus

Ingredients
For the herb-crusted lamb allow three or four chops of lamb on each rack per person

One tbsp sunflower oil
Two cloves of garlic. crushed
100g breadcrumbs
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
One tbsp chopped parsley
One tbsp chopped rosemary
Two tbsp dijon or wholegrain mustard
For the sauce
Splash of red wine
250ml jus (made by boiling stock and red wine together lor a while until rich in flavour) or stock
One tomato, deseeded and diced
One tbsp basil, chopped

For the crispy aubergine slices to garnish
One aubergine, cut into one cm circles
50ml olive oil
Method
Preheat the oven to 190°C/375F/gas 5.
Mix the oil with the garlic. Add the breadcrumbs and mix well. Season. Place on a roasting tray and put in the oven for 15 minutes, tossing every five minutes to get an even golden-brown colour. Remove from the oven, cool and add the herbs. Increase the heat to 200°C, gas 6.

To make the crispy aubergine slices, heat the oven to 200°C, gas 6. Sprinkle some salt on the aubergine flesh. Leave for 20 minutes. Pat dry with kitchen paper. Brush both sides with oil. Lay on a baking tin and put in the oven tor 12-15 minutes.Trim the racks of lamb and score the fat with a sharp knife; you can also ask your butcher to do this for you. Heat a frying pan and season the racks with salt and pepper. Seal in the pan until golden brown on all sides.Place in the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes, depending on how pink you like to eat your lamb. Remove from the oven, brush with mustard and sprinkle the crust onto the rack. Cover with tinfoil and keep in a warm place for at least 10 minutes – the meat must rest before you serve it.

To make the sauce, once the lamb is removed from the frying pan, drain off the grease and add a splash of red wine. Bring-to the boil, then add the jus (or the stock). Check the seasoning just before serving add the tomato and basil.To serve, place the mash on a hot plate. slice each rack into chops using the bone as a guide. Arrange on potato mash and spoon the sauce over the meat. Garnish with aubergine slices.

from Eden, published by Gill and MacMillan. Author Eleanor Walsh

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Roast Blasket Island Lamb with rosemary and sage pesto with rosemary and lemon roast potatoes

Ingredients
1 joint of lamb
2 large sprigs of rosemary
1 bunch of chopped rosemary
Olive oil
1 small bunch of sage
30g pine nuts
75g parmesan, grated
1 lemon
Sea-salt
3 cloves of garlic
1 kg new potatoes
Method
Make a rosemary-infused oil by gently heating enough oil to fill a bottle (75cl): add the sprigs of rosemary to the bottle and pour the cooled oil in. Seal and keep in a cool place. Do this well ahead of time if possible.
Make incisions all over the lamb and insert slivers of garlic into the flesh. Rub all over with olive oil, grate a little lemon zest directly onto it and sprinkle with sea-salt. Heat the oven to 180 degrees.
Colour the lamb all over by gently searing it in a pan with a little olive oil. Place in the oven for roughly 60 minutes for a 2,5kg joint (allow for resting time before carving but by all means leave the lamb in the oven for longer if you require the meat more cooked).
Make the pesto by combining the sage, pine kernels and parmesan in a blender, then slowly add the rosemary oil until a pesto-like consistency is achieved.
Blanch the potatoes then prepare for the oven. Roll them in a little olive oil, add the juice of the lemon and sprinkle with sea-salt and the chopped rosemary. Add to the oven 30 minutes before the lamb is cooked and turn frequently until golden all over.
To serve, carve the lamb that has been resting for approximately 12-15 minutes and plate with the roast rosemary potatoes. A ‘jus’ can be made by recovering the meat juices with a little warm water and/or white wine. Serve with this jus, if desired and of course the rosemary pesto to one side.

from RTE l, The Afternoon Show