Mediterranean Vegetable Moussaka - National Vegetarian Week

As we all know the popular Greek dish moussaka traditionally uses lamb, but as it's the start of National Vegetarian week (19th May to 25th) I thought I'd give moussaka a go using just vegetables.  Let me tell you it was truly delicious and every bit as tasty.
To make slicing, peeling, chopping and measuring easier OXO Good Grips kindly sent me a lovely range of tools for the job.

  
First up this rather useful hand-held mandolin slicer enabled slicing potatoes into even slices a doddle. 


An aubergine was sliced and ready to cook in next to no time:


The hand-head mandolin is easily adjusted by a simple slider on the side so you have a choice of three different thicknesses from approx 1mm to 5mm.  One thing I will say is personally I would have liked the slicer to have one more thicker setting than the max it has of about 5mm.  After use the blade is set to the lock position making it safe to store with the guard in place.

Next up, the Herb Mincer - a fantastic little gadget.  The top opens up to allow easy cleaning and it can go into the dishwasher if you wish.  Safe to use since your fingers aren't near the blade when using.  It chops herbs in seconds just by rolling back and forth and comes with a blade guard for safety when storing. 


 Scrubbing vegetables is once again made easy with this comfortable to hold Vegetable Brush - I didn't need to scrub my potatoes as I was about to peel them for this recipe.


 The OXO Good Grips Y-Peeler is the very fellow for this - nice thin slices means there's no wasted veg:


  How many times have you gone to measure out a teaspoons of spice from a jar to find your measuring spoon will not fit the jar?   These slim measuring spoons are brilliant and the teaspoon easily fits into these slim spice jars that many of us I'm sure have in our cupboards.


All in all each of these products are of good quality as always from OXO Good Grips and you can find out more over at the OXO Good Grips website.  All products shown above are dishwasher safe.

  Now with my recipe!

Print Recipe
https://sites.google.com/a/aglugofoil.com/a-glug-of-oil/home/mediterranean-vegetable-moussaka

To serve 4 you will need:
1 tablespoon olive oil - plus extra for brushing
2 medium potatoes - peeled and sliced
1 large aubergine - sliced
1 large onion - chopped
1 fat garlic clove - finely chopped
1 courgettes - chopped
1 red pepper - deseeded and chopped
1/2 a green pepper - deseeded and chopped
1 tablespoon tomato purée
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes including their juice
150ml vegetarian red wine
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 a teaspoon of all spice
1/2 a teaspoon of nutmeg
a small bunch of flat leaf parsley - leaves only and chopped
salt and pepper to season

For the topping:
25g unsalted butter
25g flour
300ml whole milk
1 egg - lightly beaten
150g of grated Cheddar

a pinch of salt
grated nutmeg

How to do it:
Rinse the potato slices and pop in a single layer into a shallow dish with 2 tablespoons of water.  Cover with cling film and into the microwave for about 5 minutes on high. 
Since all microwaves are different, test to see if they are cooked and you might find you need to cook them for a little longer until you can insert a sharp knife and they're soft but still firm. 
Oil an oven-proof baking dish and cover the whole bottom with the cooked potatoes.
Slice the aubergine diagonally into 4mm slices and brush with oil.  Fry in a large frying pan in a couple of batches turning after a few minutes until pale golden. Pop onto kitchen paper to drain while frying the rest then set aside.

Wipe the pan clean and heat a tablespoon of oil over a medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes, until soft.  Increase the heat, add the courgettes and peppers.
Add the purée and cinnamon and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.  Now add the tomatoes and red wine along with the oregano and all spice and bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes until reduced to a thickish sauce.  Throw in the chopped parsley, stir and have a taste.  Season with salt and pepper. 

Now back to the baking dish covered with a layer of potato - add a layer of the vegetable mixture followed by a layer of aubergine.  Repeat making sure you end with a layer of aubergine.
Pour over the cheese mixture and sprinkle a little more grated cheese over the top.


Preheat the oven to 200C/Fan180C/Gas 6

To make the topping:
Heat the butter in a medium saucepan until melted.  Add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon and cook over a medium heat (stirring all the while) for a just couple of minutes to cook the flour. 
If you don't do this your cheese sauce with taste floury and will be lumpy - so pay attention!

Using a balloon whisk, add the milk a little at a time whisking as you go.  Now remove from the heat and leave to cool for a couple of minutes. 
Gently stir in the beaten egg and pop back onto a low heat.  Add a pinch of salt and stir in the Cheddar.  Cook for a couple of minutes till you have a nice smooth sauce.  Remove from the heat.
 Grate over some nutmeg and bake uncovered for 33 to 35 minutes or until golden and bubbling.
Serve immediately with a nice Greek salad and a glass of wine - Cheers!


Many thanks to OXO Good Grips for sending me these products to review.
Disclaimer:  All thoughts and opinions are my own and I was not required to write anything positive.

5 comments

  1. The hand-held mandolin looks like a wining gadget - have always been a bit scared of them but I like the finger guard. Lovely recipe, too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. The hand-held mandolin looks like a wining gadget - have always been a bit scared of them but I like the finger guard. Lovely recipe, too.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Veggie moussaka is often equally as good as the meat version as the veggies make so much flavour and the topping is always the best bit for me!

    ReplyDelete
  4. This recipe looks divine Jan, I really must try this out on my family as it's something we can all eat! OXO good grips are such brilliantly made gadgets... i've got my beady eye on that herb mincer...

    ReplyDelete

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....
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