Preheat your oven to full whack. Put the dried chillies, raisins and apple juice in a bowl, then set aside.
Put the lamb shanks in a roasting tray, then rub all over with oil, sea salt and black pepper. Bang them in the oven for 20 minutes.
As they’re browning, peel and finely chop the onions, peel and finely slice the garlic, then halve and deseed the chillies.
Get a casserole pan that will fit the shanks quite snugly — about 24cm in diameter and 10cm deep. Put it on a medium heat and add a lug of olive oil, the onions, garlic, fresh chilli, smoked paprika, bay leaves and rosemary. Leave to sweat for about 10 minutes.
Once the onions have softened, put the rehydrated chillies and raisins into a food processor or liquidiser, along with any leftover apple juice, then blitz (feel free to sneak in a swig of red wine or bourbon here!) until you’ve got a paste. Stir this into your onions.
Take your shanks out of the oven and turn the temperature down to 140ºC/275ºF/gas 1.
Add the shanks to the casserole pan along with your tinned tomatoes and stock (if using) or equal amounts of water.
Stir everything together, cover and put in the oven to stew for 2 hours 30 minutes to 3 hours, or until the meat is falling off the bone and the sauce is thick, topping up with water or stock as you go.
Take it out of the oven, have a taste and season with salt and pepper and a dash of vinegar. Serve with steamed greens, mash, flatbreads, or whatever you fancy.
To give it a kick up the backside, I like to finely chop up a garlic clove and a little fresh chilli, then mash them with a pinch of salt and stir it through before serving for an extra punch.