The Best Moussaka Recipe

Moussaka has to be my number one favourite thing to eat!

I know I've blogged about it a few times before but it's never had a proper post all of it's own which I think it deserves!

Moussaka


I would like to someday use Kefalotiri cheese, but haven't been able to get it - not even in Waitrose! I have no idea what the difference would be though, if any.



To serve 4 people you will need:
2 tablespoons of olive oil
12 Kalamata olives, finely chopped
500g minced lamb - get the best you can with a low fat content
1x400g can of good quality chopped tomatoes
100ml of red wine
2 large onions - chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 aubergine, sliced into thin rounds
3 teaspoons dried oregano
1 large handful of Romano or Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoons dried basil
1/2 a teaspoon of dried mint
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons of tomato puree salt and pepper to taste
2 to 3 large potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds

For the Béchamel Sauce:
50g butter - melted
500ml of hot milk
4 tablespoons plain flour
2 eggs - lightly beaten
a good handfull grated Romano Cheese or Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
salt to taste (about 1/4 teaspoon)

How to do it:
Brush the aubergine slices with a little olive oil. Now fry the slices in a large pan a few at a time until they are nicely cooked and beginning to turn slightly golden. Remove and set aside.
Heat the oil in a large pan and saute the onion and garlic until soft but not coloured. Now add the lamb and cook until it is lightly browned. Stir in the tomato puree and cook it for a minute or so.
Now add the oregano, basil, mint and cinnamon, olives cook for just one minute and then add the wine.
Let the mixture cook for a little while until the wine has reduced slightly.
Pour in the can of tomatoes including the juice.
Season, with salt and pepper.
Cook on a low heat for about an hour, until the mixture becomes nice and thick.

Now put the sliced potatoes into boiling water and simmer for about 5 or 6 minutes (or when you can easily insert a knife) they are ready. Be careful not to over cook and become mushy.
Run them under cold water, drain and pat dry with kitchen paper and set aside.

Lightly oil a largish baking dish, mine is probably about 9 x 9 inches and about 2.5 inches deep. Arrange a layer of potatoes over the bottom.
Now put a layer of meat sauce and a layer of aubergine, sprinkle with some cheese and then do another layer of meat sauce followed by a layer of aubergine. You need to end up with aubergine as the top layer.

To make the Bechamel Sauce:
In saucepan melt the butter over medium-low heat and stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and cook the mixture for a couple of minutes and add the salt.
Now at this point, take it off the heat and add the hot milk whilst using a balloon whisk to mix it but you need to keep that whisk going!

Now let it cool a bit and then, add the eggs and grated cheese and keep whisking until it turns into this lovely smooth sauce.
Mix in the ground nutmeg.

Taste a smidgen of it if you dare (remembering there are raw eggs in it) just to see if it needs any more salt.  Pour the sauce over the top and sprinkle with a little more cheese.
Top with a little sprinkling of nutmeg.

Bake in a Pre-heated oven at 175C/350F Gas4
for about 40 minutes until the top is golden brown and it is hot piping hot in the middle. Let it stand for a few minutes before cutting into slices to serve.

Greek Salad

Serve with a nice Greek salad.

9 comments

  1. Jan, the Moussaka looks grand, you did it 'cause you love Greek food. The olives in are peculiar but otherwise, yum-world!

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  2. Looks tasty Jan! You went all out with the salad too I see :)

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  3. You know I've go to love this meal from beginning to end Jan!!

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  4. You've been busy again Jan, cooking up a fabulous storm of goodies!
    I could do with the salad right now, looks so vibrant and fresh.

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  5. Jan that looks sooooooooo scrummy!!! I have never made Moussaka. I've never even tasted it. Clearly I need to change that!

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  6. Jan,
    This is my kind of meal...I love Greek food!

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  7. That is one great looking moussaka Jan.

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  8. Oh delicious! I haven't had moussaka in ages :( Yours looks divine!

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  9. I really need to make this. I'm sure the flavours will conjure up many happy memories of the many holidays Mick and I enjoyed in Greece. Great job, Jan.

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Thanks for taking the time to comment - much appreciated.
Cheers
Jan

PS: I hate having to do this but anyone trying to leave links in their comments please save yourself the trouble as they will NOT be published....
Thank you, you know who you are :)

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