While elk shanks often get boned out for the burger pile, try saving them for slow braising — like traditional Osso Buco. Cooking them on the Traeger Grill adds even more flavor. We braise the shanks in a mixture of red wine and beef stock, along with aromatic vegetables such as onion, carrots, and celery.
You can leave your shanks whole, separating the lower legs at the knee joint and just above the hoof, or cross cutting them with a saw into more traditional rounds. If you do cross cut the shanks, tie the meat with butcher’s twine to hold it together as it cooks.
For richer flavor, we first season and grill the shanks to brown them well on all sides before adding to a pan with the liquid and other braising ingredients for a long cook.
2 elk shanks, either whole or cross cut
4 cups beef or elk stock
2 cups red wine
2 onions, quartered
1 pound button mushrooms, whole
4 whole carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 can Original RO*TEL Tomatoes with Green Chiles (10 ounces)
4 cloves garlic
2 bay leaves
2 stalks fresh rosemary
2 stalks fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
Pat the shanks dry. If using cross-cut rounds, wrap the meat with butcher’s twine and tie to secure the meat to the bone.
Season the shanks well on all sides with salt and pepper. Place the shanks on a preheated 350 degree grill. Grill for 10-15 minutes, turning often, to brown on all sides.
Place the browned shanks in a large aluminum grill pan. Add the stock and wine. Add remaining ingredients. Season with an additional teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
Reduce the grill heat to 250 degrees. Place the pan, uncovered, directly on grill rack. Cook for 2 hours. Cover the pan tightly with foil and continue cooking another 2-3 hours or until the meat is tender.
Check seasoning for braising liquid and add additional salt, if needed. Serve shanks topped with braised vegetables over rice, grits, or potatoes.
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