For the Lamb
- 600g Diced Lamba 1kg Shoulder or Leg joint diced up work best
- 20g Butter
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 70g Rice
- 2 Tsp Oregano
- 450ml Boiling Water
- 2 Cloves Diced Garlic
For the Roux
- 50g Butter
- 2 Tbsp Flour
For the Yogurt
- 750g Greek YogurtWeigh the yogurt on kitchen scales rather then using a liquid jug
- 6 Eggs
About this Recipe
Being able to cook an Albanian national dish that reminds everyone of home puts a great smile on my face and warmth in my heart. Albanian Tavë kosi is a simple recipe of baked lamb and yogurt with rice, seasoned with oregano and garlic. The recipe originates from the Albanian city Elbasan so is also known as Tavë Elbasani.
Some see Tavë Kosi as a comfort food dish. The soft, tender lamb baked with rice, oregano and garlic underneath a yogurt mixture has the most amazing aroma. It’s looks impressive when cooking too – the top rises up above the pot then as it cools sinks to create an impressive golden delight.
Most recipes call for lamb shoulder meat to be used however I find cutting up the meat of a leg of lamb works well too, I keep the bones for the next day, boiling them to make stock or soup.
Note: The calories on this recipe can be quite high with the meat and yogurt. We use 0% fat Greek yogurt to bring down the calorie in take. Cutting the fatty areas off the meat will also help.
Baking the Lamb
The juices should have nearly all boiled away so another 150ml of water should be added along with the rice. Mix altogether, bring to the boil, place the lid on and leave for just 10 minutes. It’s advised to check at around 8 minutes – you want the liquid to be evaporated with just moist coating of oily water left over the lamb and rice.
Making a Roux
In a small saucepan melt the butter over a medium heat and then add two tablespoons of flour while continuously stirring for two minutes (add a little extra flour if needed). The roux should not be thick but not too runny, the colour will darken slightly. Pour the roux into a bowl and keep to one side.
Making the Yogurt Mixture