Traditional Greek Moussaka is a baked casserole prepared from ground lamb or beef meat and layers of sliced eggplant, covered with a sauce and baked. The dish is popular through the entire Greece, Turkey, Levant, Balkans and the Middle East. It is believed to that moussaka has Middle-Eastern origins, and it was introduced from the Ottoman Empire brought the eggplant to Greece.
Traditional Greek Moussaka
- 6 eggplants
- vegetable oil
For the meat sauce
- 750 g beef or lamb mince
- 2 red onions (chopped)
- 2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
- 400 g tin chopped tomatoes
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 cup red wine
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- a pinch of cinnamon or one cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 cup cup olive oil
For the béchamel sauce
- 900 ml milk
- 120 g butter
- 120 g flour
- a pinch of nutmeg
- 2 egg yolks
- 100 g Parmigiano-Reggiano or Kefalotyri
- Wash and cut the eggplants into ½' slices thick. Then season with salt and place them into a bowl with water for ½ hour.
- Then drain them and squeeze out the excessive water.
- Over a medium heat place a frying pan with olive oil and fry the eggplants. Then place them on paper tower to get rid off any extra oil.
- Prepare the meat sauce for the moussaka. Over medium high heat place a large pan with olive oil and sauté the chopped onions, then add the tomato puree, garlic, and the meat.
- Add red wine, 1 bay leaf, tomatoes, sugar, cinnamon, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and cook for about 30 minutes, covered with the lid.
- You can use another pan over low-medium heat to melt butter and add the flour. Stir well then add the milk while keep whisking. Bring it to boil and remove from the heat then stir egg yolks, grated cheese, nutmeg and season with salt and pepper. Stir well and leave it aside.
- Grace the bottom of a large baking dish and add layer the eggplants. Then place on top the meat sauce and spread it out, and add a second layer of eggplants. Pour on top the béchamel sauce and smooth out with a spoon and sprinkle with some grated cheese.
- Preheat the oven to 200° C
- Place the baking dish in the oven and bake for about 1 hour, until the top turns light golden brown.
- Let it cool and cut into pieces and serve.
Inspiration and adaptation: wikipedia.org, greekerthanthegreeks.com, tasteatlas.com
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