1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
4 medium lamb shanks
1/2 cup grapeseed or safflower oil, divided
4 medium yellow onions, sliced, divided
10 black peppercorns
3 sprigs fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 bay leaves
2 cups lamb, veal or beef stock
2 cups dark beer, preferably porter or doppelbock
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 pounds carrots, peeled, sliced 1/2-inch thick
1 1/2 pounds fingerling potatoes, sliced 1/2-inch thick
3 cups button mushrooms, halved
1 pound Wisconsin Gran Canaria cheese or another aged, mixed-milk cheese, crumbled into pea-sized pieces
Preheat oven to 325°F. Combine flour, salt and cracked black pepper in shallow pan. Roll lamb shanks in mixture to fully coat; tap to remove excess flour. Set aside. Heat 1/4 cup oil in large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Place lamb in pan and sear, turning over until shanks have a golden crust. Remove from pan; set aside.
Place 2 cups onions, all of the peppercorns, thyme, rosemary and bay leaves in bottom of 4 to 6-inch deep baking dish. Place lamb over the aromatics. Pour stock and beer over shanks. Firmly seal the dish with aluminum foil or very tight-fitting lid. Be sure that foil does not touch lamb. Place dish in oven and bake 3 hours or until meat falls off the bone.
Remove shanks from liquid; place in refrigerator to cool slightly. Strain the liquid in the pan into a wide, heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to strong simmer; reduce liquid to half its original volume, occasionally skimming off fat with slotted spoon. Strain liquid again; season with vinegar, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. If desired, add 1 to 2 teaspoons honey or sugar to balance bitter flavor of beer. Set aside.
Remove lamb from bones, leaving in large pieces. Remove any fat. Heat 1/4 cup oil in large stock pot over medium heat. Add carrots and potatoes; sauté 7 minutes. Add mushrooms and 2 cups onions; sauté for another 4 minutes. Add reduced sauce; bring to a simmer. Add lamb; cover and simmer until potatoes and carrots are just cooked through, 30 to 45 minutes. Remove from heat.
Ladle stew into shallow bowls and top with sprinkling of Gran Canaria. Allow cheese to melt slightly before serving. Serve with crusty bread.