Saratash (aka Balkan Stir Fry)

Hi everyone!  I am Aida Ibisevic of Balkan Lunchbox and I’m so excited to be guest posting here at Happily Unprocessed! 

Firstly, thank you for giving me the opportunity to guest post on
Happily Unprocessed. What impresses me most about this blog is how dedicated you are at inspiring folks to eat unprocessed foods. As our health, and thus our lives depend on it, it’s definitely a worthy, albeit a challenging cause to take up!

And to Debi’s readers, hello and thanks for letting me jump into this space for a little bit! I blog over at Balkan Lunch Box, and mostly write about Balkan (and International) cuisine. Even though you may not have heard of it specifically addressed as so, I bet you’ve eaten Balkan food before. If you’ve had stuffed peppers, or pies with meat and veggies, or a really good stew… well then you have a pretty good idea what it’s all about.

What Balkan food definitely has in common with Happily Unprocessed, is the theme of preparing food at home. There is still a big culture of going to the farmer’s market to get the ingredients, preparing food from scratch, and then sitting down for dinner with the family.

You still with me?

Today we’ll be making satarash, which is more or less a version of stir fry. Except, satarash is more on the simmered side, and sweeter. Instead of that crunchy taste, you get equally delicious veggies brought to a soft perfection.


It is the bell pepper (or the Italian sweet pepper if you can find some) that can be thanked for the sweetness of the dish. (I recommend getting only red and yellow bell peppers, and avoid green ones due to sourness.) Meanwhile, it’s the long simmering that accounts for its softness.


Satarash is ultimately a vegetarian dish, and it can be eaten as a sauce just like that, by itself. It’s also great with crackers or bread. Alternatively, you can break some eggs over it have a satarash omelet, or a stir fry risotto if you add some rice halfway throughout simmering.

And it can easily be transformed into a non-vegetarian delight by an addition of meat on the side.


Really, there is no wrong way to make, and eat, this dish, and I hope you enjoy it!

Satarash (aka Balkan Stir Fry)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 4-6 servings

Satarash, aka Balkan Stir Fry, is a soft, pepper based sauce with sweet undertones. Perfectly tasty by itself as a vegetarian dish, satarash can also easily be adjusted to appease a meat lover’s palate with the addition of animal protein.


3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 yellow onions (diced into half moons)
3 red bell peppers (deseeded and sliced into ½ inch strips)
3 yellow bell peppers (deseeded and sliced into ½ inch strips)
3 tomatoes (skinned and diced)
3 carrots (grated)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon table salt (or seasoned salt)
1 teaspoon ground pepper


  1. In a deep pan (or wok) heat up oil over medium. Add onion and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir well.
  2. Bring temperature to low, add bell peppers and continue to simmer another 10 minutes. Stir frequently.
  3. Add carrots, tomatoes, sugar, salt and ground pepper. Stir well. Cover the wok halfway. Continue simmering (with occasional stirring) for 20-30 minutes on low.
  4. Serve warm with eggs, meat or by itself.


If necessary add a little bit of water at a time throughout simmering, however the volume shouldn’t be more than 1/3 to ½ cups of water. Vegetables will expel their own water during simmering and this should ideally be enough.

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