I Love Winter

Lamb Shank, Barley and Veggie Soup

June 1st marks the beginning of Winter.

I love Winter in Melbourne. It gets cold! Of course by cold I don’t mean it snows – don’t be crazy! I mean there is a chill in the air and some brilliant sunshine during the day. It gets dark early and it’s just nice to snuggle down with flanny jammies and a glass of red wine or a really rich dark hot chocolate.

I love Winter food. Slow cooking is my favourite and I miss it during the Summer months.

Last week we had a cold day and it rained. The best thing about this was that it was a Sunday so there was time to slow cook lamb shanks and make a hearty soup with barley and vegetables. It was a perfect pj day and I snoozed on the couch while the shanks slowly did their sexy thing.

There’s not much more to say – wonderful – I get really sad for people who have never eaten this.

I love my food :)

I love my food 🙂


  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 6 trimmed lamb shanks
  • 2 large chopped onions
  • 6 cloves garlic – whole and leave skins on
  • 2 diced carrots
  • Marsala
  • 2 litres beef stock
  • 1 litre water
  • 3/4 cup pearl barley
  • 2 tbs chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary


Heat 2 tbs olive oil in a large saucepan and brown 6 trimmed lamb shanks. Remove and set aside. Add 2 large chopped onions, 6 whole garlic cloves (skin on), 2 diced carrots and cook for 5 minutes or until lightly browned.

Return the shanks to the pan and add Marsala, 2 litres beef stock, 1 litre water, 3/4 cup pearl barley and 2 tbs chopped fresh rosemary. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 2 hours.

Remove the shanks and cool slightly. Take the meat off the bone and flake into pieces.  Squeeze the garlic out of their skins and mash and mix with the meat. Return the meat to the soup and add an extra 1 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary as well as chopped parsley. Season to taste and serve with warm crusty bread with butter – and drink some red wine – that’s what heaven means to me!


10 thoughts on “I Love Winter

  1. You’re so right. Love those slow cooked and as you know we get a lot of winter here in the UK to do them. However we are getting a little bit of Inter-winter (whilst waiting for Winter to start again) such that we get, so this will have to wait a while before I cook it again. Something to look forward to. Nice post!

    • As it doesn’t snow or get to sub zero temperatures here, I never complain about Winter – I just enjoy the warmth created from slow cooked food – thank you for always having something nice to say about my posts 🙂

  2. So glad to see I’m not the only one making lamb soup. Well, in my case I didn’t use shanks. Neck of lamb which is a new cut for me to cook with. Turned out really well! And I’m not overly keen on lamb. Enjoy your winter 🙂

    • I’m also not overly keen on lamb but love shanks and the neck. I love the combination of the lamb and the barley and the Marsala gives it a much more mellow flavour than using red wine. I’m mostly using Marsala now instead of red wine in my cooking and it’s so much nicer!
      I plan on enjoying every day of Winter cooking and I have changed my diet drastically so some new food adventures for me 🙂

    • It really was yum and I as it freezes so well I made lots and have plenty in the freezer for a mid week meal. Marsala is so much more mellow than red wine in cooking and I just love using it 🙂

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