Thursday, June 9, 2011

Stinky Shrinky Skanky Shanks

One of my newest, most favoritest blogs is Food Wishes.  Chef John inspires me on a daily basis with his easy-to-prepare video recipes.  You must check him out!  Sometimes I go poking around in the archives and stumble upon something new & delicious.  Such was my recent discovery of his Slow Roasted Lamb Shanks.  The video had me drooling, so I quickly drove to Wegmans and purchased a package of their FYFGA shrink-wrapped shanks.

Though I love all things lamb, this was my first shank purchase and I was excited to give Chef John's recipe a try.

I removed the shrink wrap from the shanks and P.U. -- the entire kitchen immediately started to stink.  I've never encountered this with other cuts of lamb, so I figured this "eau de manure" might be normal for shanks and would soon dissipate.  No - it got worse as they roasted, and everything in the house, including me, was coated in the sour stench.

In fact, when I dropped by my neighbor's house to let her trio of black labs out for an afternoon piddle they eyed me hungrily as if I were a ripe corpse.  I reeked of rotting sheep to the point that they wanted to roll on me.

Back in my kitchen again, the smell oozing out the front door, I could tell that things hadn't improved, even with the addition of 6 giant cloves of crushed garlic, fresh rosemary & thyme.  That's when I decided to save my marriage and toss the smelly, gag-inducing shanks out.

Do shanks typically smell like a flock of dysenteric sheep?  I had to know!  So I called Wegmans to get the poop, so to speak, and the butcher du jour agreed that lamb has a strong smell compared to other meats, but shouldn't be pervasive like that.  He said, "Sometimes stuff happens, gas gets stuck inside when they're doing the packaging, or maybe there was a little hole in the bag."

Gas, indeed.

So, word to the wise my foodie friends -- have your butcher open the shrink wrap before you buy!

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