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Lamb shanks for the Hungry Sailor and I!

Posted on June 12, 2013 by in lamb, rsg

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lamb shanks

Lamb shanks for stews are the best, at least for me it is. Whether it is a lamb curry, a tomato stew or even just a flavorsome potjiekos, lamb shanks are my cut of choice.

Lamb shanks which is the lower end of the leg is packed with flavor and will cook to a meltingly tender fall-off-the-bone state after some long slow cooking. Although lamb shanks have become quite an expensive cut of meat, it still yields generous portions which still makes it an affordable meat option.

The man, or shall I say sailor behind today’s recipes is none other than the Hungry Sailor Johan Zietsman from the blog Ziet’s Ramblings. I first saw Johan rambling on on Food 24 and thought, what a life. Here is a man that sails, travels and cooks for a living and I had a serious attack of jealousy.

Johan certainly is a man of many talents of cooking is just one. He can tick bow hunting and “vlieghengel” off his list of things he has accomplished. At the moment he aspires to be a full time sailor. For him, cooking is a stress-reliever and a way of expressing his creativity. Johan started his blog as a journal of his Trans-Atlantic journey and now blogging has become part of  his life’s journey. Johan studied engineering and also has his Masters in Business Management and Administration. He qualified from  the International Royal Yachting Association as a yachting instructor and also has a RYA Yachtmaster Ocean and local Yachtmasters Offshore license which allows him to travel the “seven seas”!

Sorry ladies, Johan has been married to Carol for 32 years and has one son!

lamb shanks

Johan says that this stew can work with beef, even venison, but because venison is dry, go half-half with lamb.

Ziet’s Lamb shanks

serves 6-8


1 kg lamb shanks

2 x 410g tinned tomatoes

1 large onion – chopped

½ green pepper – chopped

2 cloves garlic – chopped

50 ml soy sauce

7.5ml dry oregano

salt and pepper to taste

50 ml olive oil for frying

water as needed

lamb shanks


You need a deep pot and if you want to cook this in the oven, use a cast-iron pot. Pre-heat oven to 180 C.  Heat the pot on the stove top and brown the meat in batches or brown the whole shanks if you have decided to keep them whole.( Notice: no oil) The meat will stick slightly to the bottom, but do not worry, this will give flavor to the final dish. Just make sure you do not burn the meat. Remove the meat from the pot and add the oil. Saute the onions and green pepper and after a few minutes also add the garlic. When the onions and green peppers have browned slightly, add the meat and cook for 15 seconds. Add the soy sauce which will help to release the caramelized bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the tomatoes and place the lid on the pot. Place the pot in the oven or if you are doing it on the stove top, reduce the heat to its lowest setting and let the stew simmer for 1½ hours. Add water regularly so that it does not burn.  When the meat is soft, add salt and pepper to taste as well as the oregano and allow to cook through once more. The stew is better if left to stand for a bit. Serve on a bed of Basmati rice or cauliflower mash!

lamb shanks

Tomorrow morning just after the 9 o’clock news, I will be  back in my seat at RSG studios, chatting to Johan about his travels and this delicious recipe. Get ready to be amazed! I will also in weeks to come take you into the kitchens of other bloggers, chefs and interesting South Africans this year. So buckle up, it is going to be an awesome ride. Tune in 100-104FM or listen online here!



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10 Responses to “Lamb shanks for the Hungry Sailor and I!”

  1. Johan Zietsman 12 June 2013 at 5:33 pm #

    Hi Nina, delicious looking dish, from my recipe, nogal! Looking forward to our chat tomorrow!

    • nerinatimm 15 June 2013 at 7:06 am #

      Baie dankie Johan, was lekker om jou te “ontmoet”!

  2. Zirkie 12 June 2013 at 6:05 pm #

    Dit lyk heerlik, Nins!!

    • nerinatimm 15 June 2013 at 7:06 am #

      Dankie Zirks, dit was lekker!

  3. Sheena Mathew 12 June 2013 at 7:01 pm #

    Uiteindelik n treffer! Kan ongelukkig nie more in luister nie, ek gee klas tot 9.30am. Dankie Nina, die resep sal ek beslis gebruik!

    • nerinatimm 15 June 2013 at 7:07 am #

      Dankie Sheena, vir jou inloer en jou ondersteuning!

  4. Flee 14 June 2013 at 2:45 pm #

    I often have to cater two huge shanks just for my man. He eats the first like a real gent and then the neanderthal comes out and eats the second with his hands… LOL, 1kg would not feed 6 in my house. These look aaamazing Thanks Nina and Johan.

    • nerinatimm 15 June 2013 at 7:07 am #

      Sounds like my kind of man!


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