Moussaka

Posted on January 15, 2010

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Since writing about Greece yesterday, I decided to try another greek classic – Moussaka. It’s actually fairly straightforward and is a perfect winter dish (I have no idea how they eat this in the summer…it’s heavy). Serve with a salad to balance the meal a little.

As with any of recipe that I use, this is really general so play around with whatever you have to hand.

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 2 large aubergines (or eggplant if you happen to be American or Australian)
  • Olive oil
  • 1 onions, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 500g lamb mince (beef works fine too)
  • Spices: salt & pepper,cinnamon or allspice,  oregano and thyme
  • ½ cup red wine
  • Can chopped tomatoes (I often add a few chopped fresh tomatoes to ensure I get my fruits and veg!)

For the bechamel:

  • Knob of butter
  • Flour
  • Milk
  • Grated parmesan cheese
  • A couple of eggs (I sometimes just use egg whites if they are left over from another recipe)

Method

  1. Cut the aubergines into long strips just under 1cm thick. Brush with a little oil and then Griddle until cooked (aubergines can also be placed in the oven on a baking tray but I prefer the flavour from a griddle). Once done, leave to one side.
  2. Meanwhile, in a pan fry the chopped onions until almost browned. Add the gralic and the meat. Str whilst browing the meat. Add the red wine and stir again. Then add the spices and tomatoes. Leave to gently simmer.
  3. In a small non stick pan, melt the butter over a low heat. When melted gradually stir in flour, bit by bit, until it forms a kind of dough that sticks to itself (rather than the pan). Gradually add milk, stirring in a little at a time to ensure there are no lumps. A small knob of butter will need about half a pint of milk. Put the pan back onto the hob on a medium heat and stir continuously (well, regularly at least) until the sauce thickens. Stand to one side.
  4. In an ovenproof dish, add one-third of the meat, then layer the aubergines on top, repeat and then add the last layer of meat on top. Add the eggs to the bechamel, stir until mixed then gently pour the mixture over the top until it is covered.
  5. Bake for around 45mins to an hour on a medium heat. Leave to stand and cool for a few mins before serving as it will then cut much more easily.

Try the moussaka type dish from Australian Women’s Weekly Cooking Class: Greek it’s delicious!

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