For those of you not in the know, epic meal time is a series of videos set up by a bunch of Canadians on YouTube involving making very large dishes of fast food constructed in such a way to look like a traditional meal, for example they once made a hamburger lasagna by basically ordering a lot of hamburgers from different fast-food joints and layering them with cheese. Then they proceed to eat these cholesterol-laden dishes with incredible gusto. If you need a visual definition of the word gluttony, just look these guys up.

Well, today I too had an epic cooking adventure. I do not think I ever worked so hard to prepare a meal in my whole entire life. I had my family over today for lunch and I really wanted to wow them with my skills as a chef. I made lamb shanks with spices, roast potatoes, a greek salad, hummus and tzatsiki. Oh, and a curried marrow soup as a starter. It wasn’t all plain sailing.

First of all, I could not find lamb shanks at my usual favourite butcher. This already disheartened me somewhat. But I was told that at a particular supermarket, I would surely find. So my hubby and I trouped down there one day directly after work. This supermarket was HUGE. And NOISY. I had also never been there before and had to look for everything. While searching for the butcher, I take a look at my husband and he is all of a sudden pale and sweaty, really dizzy and about to keel over. I told him we should leave right away, but he insisted on waiting in the car until I complete my mission. At least, I managed to find the shanks and I hot-tailed it out of there. Thank God, my husband was feeling better and we were able to drive home.

The next day, I was reviewing the recipe I was going to make and realised that it contained a tablespoon of honey. Oh no. My parents are diabetics, but my mum is particularly vigilant and I decided to call her up to see if it would be ok. She then dropped a bomb on me: she was on a new health kick.

Now, my mum often goes on health kicks and they do not last very long: sometimes she says she won’t eat wheat, sometimes corn, sometimes she says she does not want any condiments with her salad and so on and so forth. It is not usually such a problem, but her latest one was a little extreme: she does not want to eat meat. She said the strands stick in her teeth. I knew telling her that only happens if you do not know how to cook meat would be useless, once she gets a health kick in her head, there is no way of being able to give it the boot (ho ho ho!). All this after I searched high and low for lamb shanks. Well, I was not going to give up on the lamb shanks so I made loads of side dishes:

Greek salad:




























Roast baby potatoes:










Well, I have to say that I never made lamb shanks before and I do not usually like to experiment on guests, even if they are my family, but they were a major hit! I marinated them in spices over night, pan seared them until they were just brown on the outside and then I cooked them for almost 4hrs this morning in the oven. The texture was perfect, the meat fell away from the bone deliciously!

 I also warmed up some pitta bread, both white and wholemeal variations and served along with. I am rarely off on a Sunday and I was really determined to make a great Sunday lunch. I think it is safe to say, that everyone was happy and my family walked away with a good feeling in their tummies and dare I say, their hearts too?