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Mezza Bishurba (Lamb Shanks Soup)
To serve 4

4 lean meaty lamb shanks each about 3/4 pound
2 quarts water
12 medium sized fresh ripe tomatoes peeled seeded or chopped (about 4 cups)
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup uncooked long or medium grain rice

In a heavy 8-10 quart pot, blanch the lamb shanks by covering them
with cold water, bringing to a brisk broil over high heat. Boil
briskly for one minute. Drain lamb at once. Under cold running
water, wash away any accumulated scum. Rinse out pot so no scum
accumulates. Return lamb to pot and cover with clean, cold water
to cover meat at least 2 inches above. Reduce heat to low and simmer
partly covered for about one hour. After one hour is over, stir in
tomatoes, onions, nutmeg, salt and a few grindings of pepper.
Partially cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Add Rice. Cook tightly
covered for 20 minutes, or until lamb an d rice are tender. Taste
for seasoning, serve at once from heated plates.


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