Greek Recipes

Greek and Cypriot recipes

Tavva (Baked Lamb & Potatoes (or rice) with Tomatoes and Onions)


  • You can either use potatoes or rice in this recipe but traditionally Tavva is made with potatoes.
  • 1 or 2 kilos of Lamb, any piece is OK but traditionally it was made with the fattier parts of meat. You can use shoulder, lamb chops or any piece you have at hand. Personally I prefer to use leg of lamb as we are all watching our weight.
  • 1 or 2 kilos of Potatoes, according to taste.
  • To be honest the lamb and potatoes are all to do with personal taste; use as much as you want of each but bear in mind that Lamb shrinks when cooked.
  • 2 onions sliced, size depends on whether you like onions or not
  • ½ kilo of fresh tomatoes, quatered. 1 tablespoon tomato puree, if you wish you can omit this and add more fresh tomatoes or some tinned.
  • 2-4 bay leaves.
  • I tsp of Cumin seeds
  • Level teaspoon of cinnamon, some people prefer to use 1 heaped tsp, again it’s all to do with what you prefer.
  • 2 level teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 coffee cup of olive oil, or ground nut oil (100ml or 3½ fl oz)
  • Salt


  • Medium oven temperature
  • You will need a large roasting tin or casserole dish with a lid or you can cover it with foil but if you use foil you must make sure to seal tightly.
  • Wash the meat and put into the roasting dish. Add potatoes, onions, tomatoes and bayleaves. Sprinkle over the cinnamon, pepper and some salt. Then pour over the oil and mix everything together. Finally mix the tomato puree with the water and pour over the top. Bake in oven for about 2 hours, occasionally turning the meat and potatoes during cooking,
  • Remove foil and leave in oven till browned and liquid reduced to you own taste, make sure it does not go dry. Some people like to leave a lot of sauce so they can dip their bread in it.

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