This recipe utilises Sous Vide cooking using the SousVide Supreme to put together a special meal, full of spring flavour but less ‘bench’ time than you would think looking at the end result! You will tuck away the lamb shanks for a day, leaving them to gently cook to tender and flaky perfection. The vegetables and sauce are simple and quick to prepare shortly before eating. A contrast of crunchy asparagus, soft and mildly spiced cauliflower puree and crispy potato millefeuille. The sauce, a reduction of stock, herbs, onion, garlic and olives is boldly flavoured, though the meat is so tender it has no real need of softening.
It is a recipe inspired by our reading of Thomas Keller’s superb book on sous vide cooking, Under Pressure, which has given us confidence to put meals together using the SousVide Supreme, and be experimental with ingredients and flavours. We summarised our top tips in a recent post on cooking Sous Vide style here.
Sous Vide cooking preserves the colour of fruit and vegetables beautifully, the asparagus stalks a bright as when they were fresh out of the grocery bag.
Potato millefeuille, a grand name but a simple concept. Thinly sliced layers of potato, brushed with olive oil, seasoned and baked till golden, compressing them as they cool helps keep the layers together.
This recipe can be cooked in stages, all of it can be prepped ahead of time, and rewarmed at serving – perfect weekend cooking.
Now one tip for cooking Sous Vide style lamb shanks. This method of cooking is not going to crisp the skin so we suggest you cut the skin and fat off before placing them in the water bath – the meat will be so tender when it comes out, it would be tricky to try browning it off in oven or pan, so we suggest cook with skin off and lift it from cooker to plate just as you are plating up.
- 4 lamb shanks
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- half teaspoon dried rose petals
- salt and pepper
- Heat the SousVide Supreme to 72 Degrees C
- Use a sharp knife to cut away all the skin and surface fat and gristle from the lamb shanks.
- Roast the cumin seeds in a frying pan over a medium heat for a few moments.
- Blitz them along with the rose petals and mix with the cinnamon, cayenne pepper and seasoning.
- Rub the spice mix onto the surface of the lamb and place them in vacuum pack bags.
- Seal under vacuum.
- Cook for 36 hours.
- When cooked, remove carefully from the bags as the meat will want to fall off the bone.
- 12 Asparagus spears
- 1 head of cauliflower
- half teaspoon cumin
- Salt and pepper seasoning
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- Heat the Sous Vide supreme to 85 Degrees C
- Trim the woody ends off the asparagus
- Chop the cauliflower into florets
- Season the asparagus with salt, pepper and a little olive oil
- Place into a vacuum bag and seal.
- Season the cauliflower with cumin, salt, pepper and place the florets into a vacuum bag and seal.
- Cook the asparagus for 10 minutes and the cauliflower for 20 minutes
- As soon as you remove each of the vegetable pouches from the sous vide, cool them in ice cold water.
- Once cold, keep the asparagus in the fridge in the bag.
- At service, reheat asparagus by placing the bag for 1 minute in a pan of boiling water, then open bag, cut asparagus spears in half and arrange piles on the plate.
- Heat the oven to 200 Deg C
- Put the cooked cauliflower into a roasting dish and lightly drizzle with olive oil
- Roast for 15 minutes until lightly browned
- Puree the cauliflower in a blender
- Keep in the fridge, then when ready to serve, reheat in the microwave before plating.
- 4 medium potatoes
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- herbes de provence
- Preheat oven to 200 Degrees C
- Oil a loaf tin (a large one or 1 mini loaf tin per person)
- Peel the potatoes
- Use a mandolin or grater to cut very thin slices
- Put a layer of potato slices
- Brush with olive oil
- Season with salt and pepper and a little herbs
- Put another layer of potatoes on and brush with olive oil but no seasoning this layer
- Put another layer of potoatoes and this time oil and seasoning
- Continue in this way, layering potato slices and brushing with oil, adding seasoning to alternate layers until the potatoes are at a depth of 3 centimetres.
- Bake for 20 minutes until the potato is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and then you need to compress the slices together and here is how you will do that...
- Put a piece of greaseproof paper on the top of the potato layers
- If you are using a large loaf tin put a weight on top of the greaseproof
- If you are using the small ones, stack them one on the other and put into a large bowl, then rest a weight on the top on, using the edges of the bowl to balance the weight. Trust me it works!
- Leave the weight on till the potato has cooled down and keep in fridge till ready to serve.
- At service, gently use a knife to get the cake out of the pan
- If you used a large loaf tin, slice the millefeuille into smaller pieces - around 2 by 4 cm
- If you used the small loaf tins, you can heat them as they are
- Reheat the potato in a frying pan gently flipping them so they warm and brown a little more on both sides.
- Olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic chopped finely
- 1 shallot chopped finely
- 1 sprig of Thyme
- 1 tablespoon flat leaf parsley
- Herbes de Provence
- 10 large olives, chopped
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 500ml lamb stock
- Salt and pepper.
- Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the garlic, shallot, parsley, thyme and herbes de provence.
- Cook for 3 minutes until the onion is transparent
- Add the chopped olives and continue to cook for another couple of minutes.
- Add the vinegar and cook until this has reduced a little
- Pour the stock into the pan and simmer, skimming as needed for around 20 minutes
- Strain the sauce and discard the solids.
- Pour the sauce back in the pan and simmer for a further 50 minutes to allow it to reduce down considerably and thicken a little. Skim off any debris as needed during the cooking.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To serve this meal, first plate the warm cauliflower puree, use a spoon or scraper to smear it across the plate.
Add the meat, as upright as possible, then pile the asparagus alongside.
Place the potato millefeuille onto the dish, then garnish with a few chopped red peppers and drizzle the sauce over the meat.
You can here us talking about this dish, which was sampled by local radio show Flavour 105 here
I am adding this to Karen at Lavender and Lovage Herbs on Saturday linky – there are plenty of herbs in this meal!
And to Ren Behan’s Simple and in Season linky – since Asparagus are seasonal right now.
Finally, this recipe was entered into a competition hosted by SousVide Supreme and Donald Russell
and we won the Judges prize!