Moussaka is one of Greece’s most famous dishes, recognised and adored all over the world.
Here is a family recipe that includes layers of grilled eggplant, potato and zucchini, layered in a rich mince sauce and topped with delicious béchamel.
Yes, it is very time-consuming, but the end result and taste are definitely worth it!
The Meat Sauce
- 1/2 kilo x beef mince
- 1 x large white onion, chopped
- 2 cloves x garlic, chopped
- 2 tablespoons x parsley
- 5 x fresh tomatoes, grated
- 1 x tablespoon tomato paste
- 1/3 cup x olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 x large eggplants
- 6 x large potatoes
- 2 x large zucchinis
- 1 x litre full cream milk
- 1 x cup all-purpose flour
- 250 grams x Parmesan cheese, grated
- 3 x tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 x eggs, whisked
- salt & pepper to taste
- Slice eggplants thinly, sprinkle with salt and set aside for one hour.
- Heat olive oil in a large pan and saute the diced onion over medium heat. Add the beef mince to the pan and break it up thoroughly. Keep stirring constantly over medium/high heat for a few minutes or so, to brown the meat.
- Once the meat is completely browned, add the garlic, parsley, fresh tomato juice, and tomato paste to the pan along with salt and pepper to taste, and mix well. Bring to a boil and make sure to immerse them in the sauce, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for about 30 minutes or so. Stir the sauce occasionally.
- Peel and thinly slice potatoes.
- Thinly slice zucchinis lengthways.
- Lightly oil vegetables (with olive oil) and grill or lightly fry and set aside.
- Start making bechamel sauce by melting the butter in a deep saucepan over medium heat, then using a whisk, slowly incorporate the flour by adding it to the melted butter in stages, while stirring continuously to avoid the formation of lumps. Once the flour has been fully incorporated, slowly add the milk while continuing to constantly stir the butter and flour paste to ensure a smooth consistency. Remove saucepan from heat and add whisked eggs, while continuing to rapidly stir the mixture. Set aside when smooth and well mixed.
- Brush the sides and base of a large baking dish with olive oil and place a layer of potatoes and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
- Place a layer of zucchinis and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
- Add a layer of eggplants and sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top.
- Spread half of the mince sauce on top of the layers.
- Repeat the method by placing another layer of potatoes, zucchini, and eggplants all lightly sprinkled with Parmesan.
- Add remaining mince sauce on top.
- Pour over béchamel sauce, covering the entire surface of the dish.
- Add the remaining Parmesan cheese on top.
- Place the dish in a pre-heated 200 degrees Celsius oven and bake for 50 minutes, or until the béchamel is golden brown.
- Allow cooling before cutting and serving.
*Recipe and image by flavours and flair
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