Traditional Iraqi 'casserole'- Tepsi Baytinijan

Total Time
1hr 30mins
Prep 20 mins
Cook 1 hr 10 mins

In Iraq Tepsi Baytinijan is a very famous dish. This recipe is from an Iraqi blog on the 'net & is absolutely delicious. The recipe is easy to make...........


  1. Peel the eggplant in wide stripes and remove stems. Cut the eggplant into rounds about 1" thick.
  2. Peel and slice the potatoes into 1" thick round slices, set aside. Slice the onions the same way. Peel the garlic and crush it using one of those little garlic contraptions. Slice the tomatoes.
  3. Heat about 1/2 cup of oil in a non-stick pan and fry the eggplant slices until each piece is light golden. In the same oil, lightly fry the potatoes- they don't have
  4. to cook all the way through. Set aside. In the same pan, fry the onion, and set aside. Drain the fried pieces on some paper towels.
  5. Mix the ground beef, half of the crushed garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Make small meatballs and fry them. Set aside.
  6. Mix about 2 1/2 cups of water with 3 tablespoons of tomato paste, the remainder of the crushed garlic, salt (about 3 teaspoons), and pepper (preferably white pepper) and -- you guessed it -- set aside.
  7. In a baking dish, arrange the eggplant pieces so they slightly overlap (do 2nd layer if necessary.) On top of the eggplant, arrange the potato slices, then the onion, then the slices of tomato on the very top. Arrange the meatballs in between the tomato slices, spreading them evenly. Pour the tomato paste mixture on top of all of this. Arrange the meatballs in between the tomato slices, spreading them evenly.
  8. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 170-180 c, for 45-60 mins, be careful not to burn --
  9. This dish is served with Basmati rice or any other kind of rice -- we prefer Basmati or 'Ammbar'.
Most Helpful

this casserole is by far the most popular casserole in iraq, and here are my notes: 1-we either use ground beef or bulgur kibbeh in this casserole which are both tasty 2-you have the option of just frying the eggplant and leave other ingredient raw. 3-we make this casserole in a round casserole dish (made of aluminum or metal), arrange the onion rings, then we fry the eggplant rounds and put them in the casserole dish as they set, then we put the potato slices(fried or raw) then the tomato rounds. 4-sometimes we put 1 green bell pepper strips between the layers for flavor which goes really well with the casserole. 5-you also have the option of putting the dish on the stove to cook it and not in the oven, which most of us here in iraq do. 6-you also have the option of eating it with iraqi bread or pita bread instead of rice. i hope everyone would make this casserole cause it's really delicious and hearty

hoda December 15, 2008

Since I now have an Iraqi roommate, I made this dish last night. I fried all the main ingredients to provide equal consistency. In case you're wondering, you use a pound of ground beef and bake at 350 degrees in the oven. 45 minutes was fine for cooking time. The 20 minutes prep time was a myth if you cut and fry all those ingredients. Of course you could use two frying pans but that uses a lot of oil. Instead of using tomato paste and then adding water, I just used a prepared tomato sauce with garlic and basil in it. Though my roommate prefers everything his mother cooks, it made my day when he smiled after his first bite and said, "delicious!" I served it over basmati rice but he also scooped with Iraqi bread.

Lewis R. November 13, 2013

Four stars how I changed it. I'm writing this review a bit late so I think I added some allspice to the meat. I know it's not traditional but I used zucchini instead of eggplants because of an allergy, and a canola-olive oil combo in replacement of the corn oil to be corn free. I left out the potatoes because when I opened my new bag they were yucky! I found I had to keep turning the meatballs near the end a lot or they would have burnt as they were not immersed in the sauce. This would be good served over basmati rice cooked in chicken stock. I would make it again as stated but with potatoes.

UmmBinat May 28, 2009