A Glug of Oil

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Traditional Moussaka Recipe

Greek moussaka - delicious lamb mince, cooked in a rich, lightly spiced tomato-based sauce.

Starting with potatoes, the mince is then layered with aubergine (eggplant) and topped with creamy b├ęchamel sauce then baked until bubbling and golden.

Moussaka - Greek moussaka recipe.

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Anyone that's been on holiday anywhere in Greece, would have most certainly eaten moussaka and if you're anything like me, you'd have it at least 5 times in a two-week holiday! ­čśť

Where does Moussaka come from and what is it made of?

Moussaka is an eggplant - or potato-based dish, with ground meat, in the Levant, Middle East, and Balkans, with many local and regional variations. You can, of course, make Vegetarian moussaka

Can you freeze Moussaka?

Yes, moussaka can be frozen, no worries. Just be sure to defrost thoroughly before reheating.

To be honest, I've found that it turns out best if reheated in a microwave, whereas in the oven it may well dry out too much.

What do you serve Moussaka with?

Greek salad, oh my goodness, a simple Greek salad is just the best. Whenever I've been to Greece they do tend to give you bread (baguette style) but always ask for Greek salad.

Many tourists travelling to Greece have Greek salad AND fries. 

No bread for me thank you, but yep I'm guilty of ordering a side of fries before now! Greedy me ah?

Quick step-by-step Moussaka, please see the recipe card for precise instructions.

Cook the potatoes and layer on the bottom of a non-stick baking dish.

Ingredients in b├ęchamel sauce

  • 50g butter - melted
  • 4 tablespoons plain flour
  • 500ml of HOT (but not boiling) milk
  • 2 egg yolks - lightly beaten
  • a good handful of grated Romano Cheese or Parmesan (about 3/4 of a cup)
  • ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt - or to taste

Potatoes for moussaka in a dish

Now cook the meat sauce.

Meat mixture for moussaka

Top the potatoes with a layer of meat sauce.

Layering moussaka meat and potatoes

Now add a layer of aubergine, followed by another layer of meat sauce. Finishing with a layer of aubergine.

Layering moussaka with eggplant

Make the B├ęchamel sauce and pour it over. I added a little grated cheddar (not traditional, I'm sure) but it's good!

Moussaka ready for the oven

Bake in the oven until piping hot and golden - see the recipe for full instructions.

Moussaka out of the oven

Serve with a simple Greek salad.

How to make Greek Salad

Sliced tomatoes, cucumber (peeled, deseeded and sliced), onion, thinly sliced,  and the cubes of feta cheese.

Sprinkle over a small pinch of oregano and drizzle with olive oil.

Greek salad in a white bowl

Now, get a glass of wine and enjoy.

Greek moussaka.

Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ star rating in the recipe card below!

lamb moussaka, how to make moussaka, Greek moussaka, traditional moussaka recipe, B├ęchamel Sauce,
main, dinner
Greek
Yield: 4
Author: Jan Bennett
Greek Moussaka Recipe

Greek Moussaka Recipe

You can, if you wish, make this with minced beef, but traditionally lamb is used.Any leftovers freeze well and once defrosted it's best reheated in a microwave so that it doesn't dry out.
Prep time: 1 HourCook time: 50 MinTotal time: 1 H & 50 M

Ingredients

For the Moussaka
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 500g minced lamb - get the best you can with the lowest fat content
  • 2 to 3 large potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • 1 large aubergine (eggplant), sliced into thin rounds
  • 1 large onion - peeled and chopped into small dice
  • 2 fat cloves of garlic - minced
  • 3 tablespoons of tomato puree (paste if you're in the States)
  • 160 ml of red wine
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried mint
  • 1 x 400g can of good quality chopped tomatoes - including the juice
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 large handful of freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • To finish the dish sprinkle over a little more Parmesan and a little nutmeg.
For the B├ęchamel Sauce
  • 50g butter - melted
  • 4 tablespoons plain flour
  • 500ml of HOT (but not boiling) milk
  • 2 egg yolks - lightly beaten
  • a good handful grated Romano Cheese or Parmesan (about 3/4 of a cup)
  • ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt - or to taste

Instructions

To make the Moussaka
  1. Lightly oil a largish baking dish, mine is probably about 25cm (9x9 inches) and about 7.5cm (3 inches deep) and set aside.
  2. Brush the aubergine slices with a little olive oil. Now fry a few at a time large pan until they are golden brown then remove and set aside.
  3. Heat the oil in a large pan and cook the onion until soft but not coloured.
  4. Add the garlic and cook for a few more minutes.
  5. Move the onions to one side of the pan and add the lamb. Cook whilst stirring until it's lightly browned and then mix the onions and mince together.
  6. Stir in the tomato puree and cook it for about a minute.
  7. Now add the wine and cook until it has reduced slightly before adding the oregano, basil, mint, cinnamon and allspice and cook for a minute while stirring.
  8. Add the can of tomatoes including the juice.
  9. Cook on a low heat for about 30-40 minutes, until the mixture thickens.
  10. While that's happening you can get on with the potatoes.
  11. Put the sliced potatoes into salted cold water.
  12. Bring to the boil and then turn down; simmer partly covered for about 6 minutes or when you can easily insert a knife.
  13. Once cooked, drain well and leave on the stovetop (no heat) to dry out a bit.
  14. Have a taste of the lamb mixture and season with sea salt and black pepper.
  15. Arrange a layer of potatoes over the bottom of your oiled dish.
  16. Followed by a layer of meat sauce and a layer of aubergine.
  17. Sprinkle with a little cheese and then do another layer of meat sauce followed by another layer of aubergines; you need the top layer to be aubergine.
  18. Now make the B├ęchamel sauce.
Make the B├ęchamel Sauce
  1. In a saucepan melt the butter over medium-low heat.
  2. Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and cook the mixture for a couple of minutes otherwise, you will taste raw flour in your finished sauce.
  3. Season with the salt and take it off the heat. Add the hot milk whilst using a balloon whisk.
  4. Stir in the Parmesan and then have a taste - add a little more salt if you think it needs it.
  5. Let it cool before adding the eggs (yolks only) then keep whisking until it turns into this lovely smooth sauce. *If you don't let it cool the eggs will scramble.
  6. Mix in the ground nutmeg.
Preheat your oven 180°C / 360°F or Gas 4
  1. Pour the sauce over the top of the meat and aubergine and sprinkle over a little Parmesan and a sprinkling of nutmeg.
  2. Cover with non-stick foil and bake in a preheated oven for about 35 minutes.
  3. Remove the foil and cook for a further 15 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and it is hot piping hot in the middle.
Did you make this recipe?
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Jan