Saksuka Tarifi: a mouth-watering Turkish recipe!

Saksuka Tarifi: a mouth-watering Turkish recipe!

This yummy recipe was taught to me by a Turkish friend. Try it… will be love at first bite!

The Saksuka Tarifi is also a perfect dish for vegetarians: without meatballs it doesn’t loses its goodness ;)

Ingredients for 4 people

– 2 medium eggplants
– 8 long green peppers (or 2 classic peppers)
– 4 medium zucchini
– 3 medium potatoes
– 800 g of peeled tomatoes *
– a clove of garlic
– a sprinkling of black pepper
– a pinch of salt
– 500 g of fresh natural yogurt

For the meatballs:
– 500 g of ground veal
– 2 eggs
– 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
– 50 g of fresh cheese
– a bunch of parsley
– half a cup of bread crumbs
– a sprinkling of black pepper
– a pinch of salt

Extra virgin olive oil for the tomato sauce and sunflower oil for frying.


1) Make the tomato sauce.
Sauté in a pan a clove of garlic cutted in half, with olive oil. When it is browned, add: peeled tomatoes, a sprinkle of black pepper and a pinch of salt suit to your taste. Cook the sauce for at least 30/40 minutes by adding, from time to time, a little of warm water. When the sauce is cooked should be quite thick and sticky, rather than watery.

2) Prepare all the vegetables for frying, being careful not to mix them each other. Then:
– wash and slice thinly the eggplant. Rub each slice with some salt and set aside for at least half an hour (this is good to remove their bitterness). Then wash them again to remove the salt and squeeze them well.
– wash the potatoes, peel and cut them into small cubes (set aside the cubes in a bowl full of water while you are continuing to prepare other vegetables).
– wash and cut the zucchini into small cubes.
– [wearing gloves] wash the green peppers, cut them in half and remove its seedes – if you have classic pepper just cut them into strips. –

3) Then fry the vegetable separately in the following order: potatoes, zucchini, eggplant, peppers (all vegetables are to be thoroughly dry before putting them in the hot oil, if necessary, dry them with a cloth).
– Heat the sunflower oil in a nonstick pan with high edges and fry all separately (in the order shown above).
– Let them fry for a few minutes, turning regularly with a slotted spoon. Remove when are golden-brown and leave them to rest on a kitchen paper. Salt them when are still hot (except the eggplant, to avoid them are too salty).

4) Make the meatballs.
– Cut the fresh cheese into cubes.
– Wash and chop the parsley.
– Place all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and knead the meat with hands until it is fully combined. Add salt and black pepper suit to your taste.
– Then roll the meat mixture into small meatballs with your hands.
– Heat the sunflower oil in a nonstick pan with high edges and fry them, turning regularly with a slotted spoon (is it possible to cook meatballs in the same pan you used to cook vegetables).
– Remove the meatballs when are golden-brown and leave them to rest on a kitchen paper.

5) Dish out.
Pile all groups of fried vegetables onto a large bowl (better if it is transparent), then put meatballs – if you made them – and spoon the sauce over the top.

Serve the Saksuka Tarifi when is still warm with the fresh natural yougurt apart – the yogurt is the key ingredient which makes the dish so yummy and, especially, Middle Eastern! Don’t underestimate it ;) –

Buon appetito!

Tip: You can prepare the dish during the morning and then serve it for dinner. In this case, let the meatballs and the tomatoes sauce aside in order to warm up them at the last, before serving.

Una foto pubblicata da Raffaella Calabria (@foodiewithsuitcase) in data:

*Note: When I’m abroad I buy the MUTTI tomato sauce [Polpa]: which is made exclusively of italian tomatoes. In Dubai is possible to find it at the Carrefour Dubai, Mall of the Emirates.

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