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Ravioli di Agnello al Burro e Salvia

Photo: Courtesy of chef Giorgio Nava

Lamb Ravioli with Butter and Sage

Giorgio Nava is an Italian chef living in Cape Town for over 10 years, and this recipe is for his signature dish based on lamb from the Karoo, combining Italian tradition with the flavours of South Africa.

17 August, 2021
Average: 3.4 (35 votes)


Season & Occasion

serves for


total time

10 HR 0 MIN


Shoulder of bone-in Karoo lamb
1,5 kg
Black pepper
White wine
1 glass
Grana Padano, 12 months old grated
100 g
All purpose flour
1 kg
Egg yolks
Lamb sauce
Lamb bones
1 kg
3 L
Salted butter
250 g
20 g

According to chef Giorgio Nava, these ravioli contain an exceptional ingredient: Karoo lamb raised in the wild in a truly spectacular semi-arid region. The lambs, which reach up to 40 kg, feed on the very scarce grasses and bushes that grow among the stones, mountains and boundless plains typical of the Karoo region. This diet gives the meat a unique flavour explains the chef.

For his ravioli, Nava uses the front shoulders of the lamb, a more affordable cut, full of flavour that is perfect for the filling.

"It is a dish I am particularly fond of, as it is very Italian with an amazing local ingredient."


Step 01

For the meat: 

Place the carrots, half an onion, garlic, celery and meat in a baking dish. Season with salt and pepper and add a glass of good aromatic white wine.

Bake at 180 ° for about an hour, then cover the pan with aluminium foil and bake again at 165 ° for 3 hours.

Remove from the oven, allow to cool and debone the meat. Remove the hard fatty parts and the garlic. Collect the vegetables which, together with the meat, will be used for the filling.

Set aside the lamb bones, which will be used for the sauce.


Step 02

For the stuffing

Pass the meat and vegetables in the food processor, add the Grana Padano and an egg. Work until you get a fine and malleable dough.

Step 03

To make the pasta

Work all the ingredients until you get a smooth dough. Leave to rest for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

Then cut into different parts and roll the dough into rectangular strips as thin as possible. Arrange the filling in the centre and cover with pastry. Close and seal with a ravioli pasta cutter.

Step 04

For the lamb sauce

Place the lamb bones on a baking sheet and brown at 200 degrees. When they are golden brown, place the bones in a saucepan with about 3 litres of water along with the chopped vegetables.

Cook for 5 - 6 hours over low heat. Degrease and skim from time to time.

After the time has elapsed, filter and keep the reduction.


Step 05

For the final dressing

Heat the butter in a pan with the sage until the sage leaves are golden.

Step 06

Cooking the ravioli

Bring salted water to the boil, cook the ravioli for 2 minutes, then remove the ravioli from the water with a skimmer.

Step 07

To serve

In a deep dish, arrange a spoonful of Grana Padano, a spoonful of lamb sauce and a spoonful of butter and sage.

Place the freshly drained ravioli on top and again finish with the cheese, the lamb sauce and the butter with the sage.

Garnish with a fresh sage leaf.




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