Lamb Stew and figuring out "done-ness"
So I have some bone-in lamb shanks that I was going to make stew with this weekend and I thought I would ask a question of the experts here. When it comes to slow-cooking bone-in meat like this in a Dutch-oven with the oven set at say 300-325 (I'm using the salt/pepper/flour-dusting, then searing on the stove-top, deglazing with stock and wine and demi and then adding meat back in clapping on the lid and putting the whole thing in the oven -- technique) is there a way (other than practice) to determine when the meat is perfectly cooked? I've used this technique with beef shoulder chunks and (I'm embarrassed to admit) overcooked the meat. I'm trying to achieve that mouthwatering, tender, pull the meat-apart in strands consistency, and I'm struggling to get there. I've undercooked, overcooked, got it perfect by accident, and I'd like to get a little more scientific about the weight of the meat, the temperature, and the time it takes to cook. Any tips and tricks much appreciated.