Murtani Recipe

Unlock the authentic taste of Albania with our Murtani recipe! Explore a delicious blend of meat, yogurt, and spices in this traditional dish.



  • Cuisine: Albanian
  • Category: Main Course
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Calories: 300 calories

Murtani, also known as Tavë Kosi, is a beloved traditional Albanian dish that showcases the country's rich culinary heritage. It's a hearty and flavorful casserole-style dish that typically consists of tender pieces of lamb or beef, baked in a creamy and tangy yogurt and egg sauce. This dish holds a special place in Albanian cuisine and is often served on special occasions and family gatherings.

The preparation of Murtani begins with browning the meat and sautéing onions and garlic to build a savory base. The addition of red bell peppers and tomatoes imparts a hint of sweetness and a burst of color. The key ingredient that sets Murtani apart is the yogurt and egg mixture. This combination is poured over the meat and vegetables, creating a creamy and slightly tart sauce.

The casserole is then baked until it achieves a golden-brown crust on top, while the inside remains creamy and rich. The contrast in textures and flavors, from the tender meat to the tangy yogurt sauce, makes Murtani a delightful and comforting dish.

Murtani is often served with a side of rice or crusty bread, allowing diners to soak up the delectable sauce. It's a dish that reflects the warmth of Albanian hospitality and the country's emphasis on simple yet delicious ingredients. Whether enjoyed with family or friends, Murtani is a taste of Albanian tradition that continues to be cherished and shared.


Discover the delectable world of Albanian cuisine with our mouthwatering Murtani recipe – a tantalizing blend of flavors!


  • 500g lamb or beef, cubed
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 red bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes (adjust to your spice preference)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Water

Method Instructions

  1. Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the chopped onions and garlic and sauté until they become translucent.
  3. Add the cubed meat and brown it on all sides.
  4. Stir in the paprika, chili flakes, and dried oregano. This will give the dish its rich flavor and a bit of spiciness.
  5. Add the chopped red bell peppers and tomatoes. Cook for a few more minutes until they start to soften.
  6. Stir in the tomato paste and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Pour in enough water to cover the ingredients in the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot, and simmer for about 1.5 to 2 hours. This slow cooking will make the meat tender and infuse all the flavors.
  8. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.
  9. Once the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened, your Murtani is ready to serve.

Serve Murtani hot, traditionally with crusty bread or over rice. Enjoy!

Recipe Video


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Recipe Tags: Murtani, Murtani Recipe, Recipe


Serving Murtani is a delightful experience, and it's traditionally done in a way that enhances the enjoyment of this Albanian dish. Here's how to serve Murtani:

  1. Portion it: Use a large spoon to scoop out portions of the Murtani from the baking dish. It's typically served individually in portions.
  2. Accompaniments: Murtani is often served with a side of white rice or crusty bread. The rice complements the creamy sauce, while the bread is perfect for soaking up the flavorful juices.
  3. Garnish: You can garnish Murtani with fresh herbs like chopped parsley or dill. This adds a pop of color and a fresh herbal aroma to the dish.
  4. Yogurt Sauce: Some people like to serve extra plain yogurt on the side. This can be used to balance the richness of the dish and provide a cooling contrast.
  5. Presentation: To make it visually appealing, you can sprinkle a pinch of paprika or chili flakes on top of each portion for a touch of color and a hint of spice.
  6. Serve Hot: Murtani is best served hot, right out of the oven. The contrast between the warm, creamy interior and the golden-brown crust on top is part of what makes this dish so enjoyable.


  1. Choose Quality Meat: Use high-quality lamb or beef for the best flavor and tenderness. Lean cuts work well, but a bit of fat can add richness to the dish.
  2. Low and Slow Cooking: The key to tender meat in Murtani is to cook it on low heat for an extended period. Allow it to simmer slowly to let the flavors meld together.
  3. Yogurt and Egg Mixture: When preparing the yogurt and egg mixture, ensure that it's well-blended and smooth. This mixture should be poured evenly over the meat and vegetables for a creamy consistency.
  4. Adjust Spices: Feel free to adjust the level of spiciness to your taste. You can increase or decrease the amount of paprika and chili flakes according to your preference for heat.
  5. Fresh Ingredients: Whenever possible, use fresh bell peppers, tomatoes, and herbs for the best flavor. Fresh ingredients can elevate the dish.
  6. Check for Seasoning: Taste the Murtani before serving and adjust the seasoning if needed. Adding a pinch of salt or pepper at the end can enhance the flavors.
  7. Rest Before Serving: After taking the Murtani out of the oven, allow it to rest for a few minutes. This helps the flavors settle and makes it easier to serve.
  8. Variations: While this recipe is traditional, you can experiment with different variations. Some people add a layer of rice on the bottom of the baking dish before adding the meat and yogurt mixture.
  9. Leftovers: Murtani reheats well and can be just as delicious the next day. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Ingredient Substitutes

If you're looking to make substitutions for some of the ingredients in a Murtani recipe, here are a few options:

  1. Meat: While traditional Murtani uses lamb or beef, you can substitute it with other proteins like chicken or even tofu for a vegetarian version. Adjust the cooking time accordingly as chicken or tofu will cook faster than beef or lamb.
  2. Yogurt: If you don't have yogurt on hand or prefer a dairy-free option, you can use a non-dairy yogurt alternative such as almond yogurt or coconut yogurt. Just ensure it has a similar creamy texture and tanginess.
  3. Red Bell Peppers: If you're not a fan of bell peppers or don't have them, you can use other vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, or mushrooms to add texture and flavor to your Murtani.
  4. Tomatoes: Fresh tomatoes can be replaced with canned diced tomatoes or tomato sauce in a pinch. This can help maintain the tomato flavor and acidity in the dish.
  5. Garlic: If you run out of fresh garlic, you can use garlic powder or garlic paste. Keep in mind that the intensity of flavor may vary, so adjust the quantity accordingly.
  6. Spices: You can adjust the spices to your preference. If you don't have paprika or chili flakes, you can use cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or even a dash of hot sauce for heat. Be cautious with the amount as these can be quite spicy.
  7. Fresh Herbs: While fresh herbs like parsley or dill are commonly used for garnish, you can substitute with dried herbs if that's what you have. Just use them sparingly as dried herbs are more concentrated in flavor.
  8. Rice or Bread: If you don't have rice or bread, you can serve Murtani with couscous, quinoa, or other grains. The goal is to have something to soak up the delicious sauce.


Bringing a taste of Albania to your table, our Murtani recipe is a flavorful journey worth savoring. Embrace tradition, share the joy!

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