Arabic Lamb and Vege Stew (Tabakh Rohoo)

Arabic Lamb and Vege Stew (Tabakh Rohoo)

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About this recipe: A classic spiced Arabic stew of lamb and layered vegetables to be served with bulgur or steamed rice. In the traditional Damascene style, ghee is added at the end of cooking for a fuller flavour but these days, the extra fat is omitted.


Serves: 8 

  • 1 tablespoon (20g) ghee (clarified butter)
  • 500g lamb, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground cloves
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1 pinch ground cardamom
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 1 potato, peeled and sliced
  • 450g eggplant, peeled and cubed
  • 450g zucchini, thickly sliced
  • 900g tomatoes, cubed
  • 1 chilli, chopped
  • 1 pinch salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup (65ml) water
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 pinch salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons dried mint

Prep:20min  ›  Cook:1hr15min  ›  Ready in:1hr35min 

  1. Heat the ghee in a large pot over medium heat. Place the lamb in the pot and cook until evenly brown. Season with allspice, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and cardamom.
  2. Place a layer of onion on top of the lamb in the pot, followed by layers of potato, eggplant, zucchini and tomatoes. Do not stir. Place the chilli in the centre of the vegetables. Season with salt. Mix the tomato paste and water, and pour over the vegetables. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 1 hour, until vegetables are tender.
  3. With a mortar and pestle, crush together the garlic, salt and mint. Mix with 2 tablespoons of liquid from the pot and pour over ingredients in pot. When removing the mixture to the serving dish - a fairly open or wide bowl - tip the pot and let it slide out the side so that it stays in the layers.

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