In a large frying pan heat 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil and brown the lamb shanks on all sides. Remove from the pan and put in a large casserole dish. Add the carrot, onion and garlic to the frying pan and cook gently until browned. Pour in the red wine, beef stock and add the sugar, a bay leaf and a sprig of rosemary, mix together and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and then pour the mixture over the lamb shanks and top up with water if needed.
Cover and put in the oven for up to 3 hours on 325 degrees F, 170 degrees C or gas mark 3. Ovens vary in temperature so begin checking the dish after 2 hours and remove from the oven when the meat is very tender.
Remove the shanks and keep warm, skim off any fat off the top of the juices. Pour the red wine mixture into a saucepan on a gentle heat and check the seasoning, adding salt and pepper if desired. Mix the cornflour with a small amount of cold water and add to the juices, stir this continually while bringing to the boil until the desired consistency s achieved.
Serve on individual plates with potatoes and green beans.
ABOUT THIS CUT
Lamb shank comes from the lower part of the leg and is best cooked slower and longer. It is also best cooked whole and once braised the meat will fall away from the bone to make a delicious meal, or alternatively it can be used for pies and pasties.