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Chestnut, rice and lamb plov recipe hamin recipe
Photo credit Vered Guttman

Chestnut, Rice and Lamb Plov

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This simple, cozy stew is made with lamb or beef and whole chestnuts.

  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6


  • 2 lb boneless lamb shoulder, leg of lamb or beef chuck
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • boiling water
  • 2 yellow onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 cups sushi rice or Spanish bomba rice
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 10 oz cooked, peeled chestnuts
  • 4 oz dried apricots (about 1214 apricots; optional)
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 3 marrow bones (optional)
  • 1 lb yellow potatoes, peeled and cut to 1-inch chunks


  1. Pat dry meat using paper towels. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a saucepan and sear meat on all sides for about 8 minutes total. Cover with boiling water up to 1 inch over the meat, bring to a boil, and skim foam. Reduce heat to low, cover the saucepan and cook until tender (3 hours for lamb, 1½ hours for beef). 
  3. When meat is done, measure 3 cups of the cooking liquid and set aside.
  4. Put the remaining 2 Tbsp oil in a 4 quart or larger heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add sliced onion and cook until lightly golden, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add rice and tomato paste, mix and cook for 1 minute while stirring. Add 3 cups of the meat cooking liquid, the chestnuts, apricots, cinnamon, 2 tsp kosher salt and ½ tsp black pepper, and mix. 
  5. Arrange the cooked meat, marrow bones and potatoes over the rice mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 1-1½ hours, until potatoes are tender, rice is ready and there’s a crispy layer of rice at the bottom of the pot.
  6. Remove the lid and cover the pot with a double layer of paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. Place the lid back on and let stand for 20 minutes before serving.
  • Author: Vered Guttman
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours-4 hours 30 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stew
  • Cuisine: Sephardic