Prepare seasoned flour by combining flour, salt, and paprika.
Dredge beef shanks in flour and shake off excess flour.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
Add the beef shanks and brown them for 4 to 5 minutes on each side. The shanks should just brown on both sides.
Remove the shanks and place them on a plate.
If needed, add another tablespoon of vegetable oil to the skillet.
Add onions, celery, and carrots to the skillet.
Sauté until the vegetables just begin to brown.
Add chopped garlic and sauté for another minute or two.
Add ½ cup of dry Sherry and scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Scrape up as many of the browned bits (fond) as you can.
Add cumin and smoked paprika and stir to combine spices in the mixture.
Place the shanks back in the skillet with the vegetables.
Cover and simmer until the shanks are tender.
Combine chopped parsley, lemon zest, and chopped garlic to make a gremolata.
Serve the beef shanks with vegetables and topped with gremolata.
Optional Slow Cooker Instructions
Transfer seasoned vegetables to the Crock-Pot and place the beef shanks in the Crock-Pot. Add low sodium chicken broth, and cover. Cook on low for 4 to 6 hours.
Optional Oven Instructions
Transfer seasoned vegetables and beef shanks to a Dutch oven or another cooking vessel with a lid. Add chicken broth and cover. Bake at 250 degrees for 4 hours.
I like to use either a dry Sherry when whites are called for or a dry Marsala for red wine recipes. So often when you open a bottle of wine you have to drink it right away. I have learned that if I keep a bottle of either dry Sherry or dry Marsala I always have a bottle of wine that I can use in cooking. These typically cost between 8 to 15 dollars a bottle, so I think these are a very good deal considering how many dishes you can make with a bottle of these wines.
This dish is flavored with a traditional mirepoix. A mirepoix is a mixture of chopped celery, carrots, and onions. This blend of vegetables is a classic blend that is used in many dishes.
Top this dish with a gremolata, simply chopped parsley, lemon zest, and finely chopped garlic mixed together. The parsley topping adds a nice finishing touch to this recipe. The beef is a heavy dish, and finishing it with the gremolata adds the right amount of zest to this dish.