Of all the good sinew-heavy cuts to make a gooey-rich braise from, neckbones gotta be the best. My recipe for cassoulet, already deeply unctuous using lamb shanks, became three notches beyond orgasmic when I made it with longitudinal slices of lamb neck. I also use pork neckbones as the basis for the big pots of gumbo I like to make.
agree with the above; simply put, you can use any recipe you'd find for short ribs (and there are plenty on this site) and just use neck bones instead. there's one floating on the site that involves a few bottles of red wine, some shallots, and mustard, and it just reduces for a few hours, and is excellent.
Any kind of large animal neck bones--slices or chunks--can be "braised". (sauteed on stovetop, then put into oven with some liquid and baked covered.)
Heat a heavy pan or dutch oven with a couple tablespoons veg oil. Meanwhile, pat dry the meat pieces, dust with flour and season with salt and pepper. When the pan is hot but before it starts to smoke (burn) place meat pieces into pan. Don't crowd--do two batches if you have to. I use my cast rion skillets to brown then transfer to a big dutch oven for the baking part.
Let the meat brown, then turn, so all sides get nicely browned.
Remove meat from pan and toss in some chopped onion, and celery, big carrot chunks, mushrooms if you've got them and a whole garlic clove or two. Cook these over medium heat for a few minutes, stirring a few times.
Put meat back into pot/pan and add a few cups of liquid. This can be canned or homemade broth, water, even a bit of wine.
Season the pot with S&P and some basic dried herbs like thyme, oregano, rosemary, parsley; about 1/2 tsp of any of them. Add a couple of Turkish/Greek bay leaves, and cover with a tight-fittting lid. If your pan lid is loose, place a sheet of foil between pot and lid to seal. Bring to a low simmer on the stovetop, then transfer to a 200 degree oven. Cook at a low simmer till meat is tender, a couple of hours (depends on size of meat cuts) Don't let the pan boil hard or meat will be tasteless and stringy. (8*edited after checking my Adele Davis 'Let's Cook It Right' on braising: "NO bubbles should be bursting on the surface of the[cooking liquid].....boiling [is] a criminal means of cooking meat...." So the cooking liquid temperature should be at about 165-180 degrees. Seeing movement on the liquid surface is OK, roiling bubbles, not.
Remove meat and veggies from pan with a slotted spoon to a large plate. Dip off fat from the liquid surface with a big spoon.
In a small bowl, mix 2 T soft or melted butter with 1 1/2 T flour. Mix up to a paste. Add about 1 cup of the liquid from the pan. Stir well, then whisk or stir vigorously back into the juices in the pan. Cook stovetop for a few minutes till juices become more gravy-like. Add meat and veggies back, and serve with a crusty bread and salad.
You can use lamb, veal, or beff shanks or necks; lamb shoulder; chicken parts (except for breasts, they dry out);turkey legs/wings; goat; pork shoulder roast, etc. The cheaper and chewier the piece of meat, the more it takes to this kind of moist low cooking. The chewy bits (tendon, gristle, connective tissue) melt under the low heat and become lucious and yummy. The meat tissue softens to an easily chewed tenderness. And the GRAVY is fantastic!
I'm doing a braising marathon today. Lamb shanks are in the oven now, and am preparing beef neck slices to go in, along with a beef stew, and a pork shoulder for chili verde (add green chili suace tothe liquid). I'll freeze most of it into dinner-sized portions for those days when I'm too tired to cook.