My Mamas Lamb Shank Curry

by Zarina
My Mamas Lamb Shank Curry

When I made this the other day, the aromas floating around my kitchen exported me back to my happy place, my family home in Hong Kong.  My Mama uses the same sauces and spices in most of her cooking, and they are Parsi influenced with a touch of the Orient too… there is a mellow sweetness to this curry that you always find in Parsi cooking and the distinct salty, spicy, and sour notes.

This is a straightforward, one-pot meal that takes minimal prep, to begin with. Then everything is just left in a heavy bottom pan to simmer away for 3 hours while developing all the flavors and tenderizing the meat until it literally falls off the bone. 

I used my Le Creuset @lecreusetuk, browned the meat off first using no oil. Once golden, I removed them and used the rendered fat to cook the curry.  Sliced onions go in to caramelize, followed by ginger, garlic, and ground spices.  Then lots of fresh chopped tomatoes and whole spices are added. It’s all cooked off for a few minutes, and then the sauces go in, Worcestershire, maggie, vinegar, brown sugar, and ketchup, which give those quintessential Parsi flavors… salty, sweet, and sour.  Lamb goes back in with stock, and it’s left to simmer away for 3 hours.  When time’s up, your kitchen will be smelling absolutely amazing!!… add a handful of frozen peas, cover for a few mins and serve!  I made a cucumber salad, which I think is a must with this dish and some basmati rice, but naan bread or even roasties would go beautifully!

My Mamas Lamb Shank Curry

My Mamas Lamb Shank Curry

Serves: 4 Prep Time: Cooking Time:
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )


  • 4 Lamb Shanks
  • Cooking oil
  • 2 Large Onions
  • 8 Large tomatoes chopped small or 2 x 400g Tins of chopped tomatoes
  • 1.5 tbsp Garlic crushed
  • 1.5 tbsp Ginger minced
  • 2 tsp Cumin powder
  • 2 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1.5 tsp Chilli powder
  • 500ml of Water or Chicken Stock
  • 6 Peppercorns
  • 1 stick Cinnamon
  • 1 Star Anise
  • 4 Cardamom
  • 5 Cloves
  • 3 Bay leaves
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp Maggie Liquid Seasoning
  • 1 tsp Vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Ketchup
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Pepper
  • 1 large handful of frozen peas
  • 4 Tomatoes diced
  • 1 Cucumber diced
  • 1 Red Onion sliced thin
  • A handful of Coriander chopped fresh
  • A squeeze of half a Lemon


  1. In a large saucepan on high heat, render the fat from the lamb shanks by browning on all sides. Use a little oil if necessary;y however, if the shanks have a nice fat layer, this is unnecessary.
  2. Remove shanks from the pan and set them aside.
  3. The same saucepan on medium heat, using the lamb's fat, fry the onions until golden brown. They should be caramelized but not crisp.
  4. Add the ginger and garlic and cook until starting to colour
  5. Add the cumin powder, coriander powder, and chilli powder, cook the spices out for a few minutes until aromatic 
  6. Add the tomatoes and whole spices and cook for a further 4-5 minutes
  7. Add the Worcestershire sauce, maggie sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, and ketchup, mix everything well
  8. Put the lamb back into the pan, cook for a few more minutes and mix well with all the masala so they develop the flavours. Add the stock or water to cover the shanks, and season well with salt and pepper
  9. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low, place the lid on top and cook for 3 hours until the lamb is fully cooked and should be almost falling off the bones 
  10. At the last 5 minutes, add the peas for some colour
  11. Serve with basmati rice, naan bread, or roast potatoes
  12. Enjoy!
Did You Make This Recipe?
Would love to hear your feedback! If you make this recipe, please tag me on Instagram @zarskitchen.

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