Lamb Kabsa is a quintessential Ramadan dish in our home. It’s my husband’s favorite rice dish and one I love to make and serve for the guests we welcome into our home to break fast with. Kabsa is a dish that originated in Yemen but is enjoyed across the Arabian Gulf, the Middle East and its diaspora. It is heavily spiced and super delicious, the true star of a festive tablescape!
- 4 lamb shanks, 4-5 lbs
- ¼ cup ghee
- 3 cups Royal brand Sella basmati rice
- 5 ½ cup water
- 3 large yellow onions, chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp minced ginger
- 4 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 2 dried limes
- 5 cardamom pods
- 3 clove
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- 3 tsp whole black pepper
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2-1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tbsp salt
- 1 cup chopped cilantro, mint and scallions
- 3 thai chili peppers, sliced
- 1 small onion, finely sliced.
- 1/2 cup toasted almonds, pistachio, pine nuts
- In a large pot, bring water to a boil and add cleaned, trimmed lamb shanks. Boil lamb shanks for 10 minutes to remove impurities. Drain and remove lamb from the pot and set aside.
- In a medium sized pot, heat ghee on medium-high heat. Add onions and saute until translucent. Add garlic, ginger, diced tomatoes, tomato paste and cook for five minutes to release liquid.
- Add both whole and ground spices and stir fry for 2 additional minutes.
- Add lamb shanks back into the pot and coat with sauce. Cover with water and allow to come to a boil before reducing to medium-low heat and covering the pot. Allow to cook for 2 hours or until tender.
- Remove lamb and aromatics from the pot and strain the stock using a sieve.
- Sear lamb shanks until evenly browned.
- Add washed Royal brand Sella basmati rice and strained stock. Stir to combine and bring to a boil.
- Reduce temperature to low, tightly cover the pot and allow Royal Brand Sella rice to simmer for 20 minutes.
- Turn off heat and allow rice to rest covered for an additional 10 minutes and then fluff with a fork before serving.
- Add in chopped herbs, onion and chili peppers.
- Add to a serving platter and top with seared lamb shanks.
- Garnish remaining toasted nuts, raisins, fried onions and cilantro.
TIP: Kabsa is an amazing stand alone dish, but do try to serve it with salad, yogurt and a hot sauce like a Yemeni sahawag.