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Greek-style lamb shanks (kleftiko)

Serves   4
Prep time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 3-3.5 hrs

Us Kiwis can’t go past tender lamb shanks when it comes to a comforting winter meal. Put a new spin on this Kiwi classic and transport yourself to Greece with beautiful Mediterranean flavours. These slow-cooked lamb shanks with lemon, herbs, potatoes, garlic and feta, are sure to have you gobbling up every last bite.

Lamb shanks




  • 4 lamb shanks
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbsp dried mixed herbs
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 200g feta, crumbled
  • 1 kg new potatoes, cut into large pieces
  • 1 capsicum, cut into chunks


  1. Preheat your oven to 160°C fan bake. Season the lamb shanks with salt and pepper and sear in a hot pan with olive oil for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until well browned. 
  2. In a baking dish or heavy-based casserole dish, mix a generous drizzle of olive oil with the garlic cloves, lemon zest and juice, dried mixed herbs, cinnamon, half of the feta and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Toss the potatoes and capsicum in the mixture, then nestle in the lamb shanks. Pour half a cup of water over the lamb, then cover the dish tightly with foil or a lid. Bake for 2.5 to 3 hours, until the lamb is tender and starting to fall off the bone.
  4. Remove the foil or lid, increase the heat to 190°C and bake uncovered for 20-30 minutes until the potatoes are golden brown. If the liquid in the dish dries out, pour over some extra water and a drizzle of olive oil. 
  5. Once cooked, remove from the oven and rest for 5 minutes. Scatter with the remaining feta and serve while hot. 
Top tip

Garnish with a sprinkle of fresh chopped herbs such as oregano or mint and serve with a zesty Greek salad or a side of steamed seasonal greens.