At the far end of the toughness spectrum for beef lies the shank. This group of muscles is in constant use throughout the life of the cow. Each muscle is sheathed in thick connective tissue. There’s no finessing this cut of meat; it goes into the pot for long, slow cooking.
There is a bright side to this cut of meat. When that connective tissue hits 85ºC (180ºF), it melts and turns into gelatin.
Mmm mmm, good.
The Shank Cut
Remove the pack aging and lay the meat out on the cutting board.
Opening the Muscle Clod
Using your fingers, separate the muscles and flatten out the clod. The thin connective tissue will separate easily.
Cleaning the Muscles
Cut off any thick pieces of gristle from the ends of the meat. You can try and skin the muscles, but it's a waste of time.
Separating the Meat
Separate the clod; this makes it easier to work with, and it will be easier to cut the pieces more evenly.
Cut the Meat
Cut the meat into small chunks.
Sear the Meat
In a very hot pan, put a few pieces of meat at a time and brown them on all sides
Deglaze the Pan
Pour red wine into the pan and loosen the bits of meat stuck onto the bottom.
Prepare the Stew
I placed the meat, the deglazing wine, potatoes, onions, kohlrabi, garlic, coriander seed, black pepper, juniper berries and salt into the slow cooker and let it do it's magic.