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Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Moussaka just out of the oven. Smells as good as it looks!

Recipe (differs in proportions from recipe in video)


3 # eggplant
1 # ground lamb
3 T olive oil
1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped fine
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 T tomato paste dissolved in,
1/2 cup white wine or 1/4 cup white wine and 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup chopped canned whole tomatoes
1 T dried oregano

Bechemel sauce
8T (1/2 cup, 1/4 #) butter
1/2 cup flour
4 cups whole or 2% milk
2 egg yolks (optional)
2 oz kasseri cheese or other gratable mild greek cheese (optional)


Trim ends off eggplant and slice lengthwise into 1/2 inch slices.
Sprinkle with kosher salt and set aside in a colander for 1 hour to leech out bitter juices.


Heat olive oil in large saute pan and saute onions until softened.
Break up ground lamb into pan and brown, periodically breaking apart large chunks with back of wooden or metal spoon.
Add garlic and stir into meat.
Add tomato paste/wine mixture and saute for 5 minutes.
Add chopped tomatoes, lower heat and allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
Meat mixture should be quite sticky and dry at this point.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Clean out pan.

Rinse eggplant and layout on paper towels. Cover with another layer of paper towels and press out as much water as possible.
Add 1/4 cup olive oil into pan over medium high heat.
Saute eggplant slices until golden brown on each side, adding oil as necessary. Remove from pan to paper towels to absorb excess oil.

Instructions for bechemel sauce

Heat butter in heavy bottom sauce pan large enough to hold 2 qts of sauce.
Once butter is melted, add flour to make a roux, stirring continuously until flour begins to brown or you can smell the flour cooking. If you want darker bechemel, feel free to brown the flour more to make a darker roux, but this optional.

Pour milk in slowly and stir continuously until all the milk is in pot and the roux is completely dissolved in mixture.

Bring sauce to a slow boil, stirring all the while. Once boiling, lower heat to simmer and stir bechemel until desired thickness is achieved.

Remove from heat and mix 1/4 cup of sauce into the two egg yolks and grated cheese. This will temper the yolks, preventing them from curdling when poured into the rest of the bechemel.

Add tempered yolk/cheese mixture back to sauce in pot and stir constantly with a whisk until cool. Or after mixing, transfer sauce from pot to bowl.

You want to be able to pour the sauce, but you don't want it runny. A consistency similar to runny pudding is a good rule of thumb.

Assembling the dish.

Place alternating layers of eggplant and ground meat into a 8" x 8" dish coated with non-stick spray.
The first and last layer should be the eggplant. This recipe should give you enough for three layers of eggplant and two layers of ground meat.
After finished, pour as much bechemel sauce over the dish as you can without letting it overflow.

Place dish on a foil lined cookie sheet and bake at 375 degrees for approximately 45 minutes. I always judge the doneness of these dishes by smell. Once I can smell the moussaka, I know it is very close to being done. The top will be browned and there will be bubbling along the sides and in the corners.

Allow to cool for 15 minutes and serve directly out of dish with a good crusty bread. Use the bread to mop up you plate.

1 comment:

ramona said...

Think your Moussaka is great!