Greek Moussaka (Recipe)
June 22, 2022
Greek Moussaka (Recipe)
2 large eggplants, sliced lengthwise into ¼ inch-thick slices, end slices discarded
4 tablespoon breadcrumbs
For the meat sauce
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
1 pound ground lamb or beef
1 tablespoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon paprika or hot paprika
½ cup red wine
14 ounce can diced tomato
½ cup hot beef broth
For the bechamel
⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
⅔ cup whole-wheat flour
½ teaspoon salt, more if you like
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
4 cups 2% milk, warmed
2 large eggs
Salt the eggplant. Spread the eggplant slices in one layer and sprinkle with salt. Let set for 30 minutes to "sweat out" its bitterness.
Turn the broiler of your oven on.
Prepare a large sheet pan or two and brush with extra virgin olive oil. Pat the eggplant slices dry, removing excess salt, and assemble in one layer on the prepared pan. Brush generously with olive oil.
Place the sheet pan about 6 inches away from the broiler. Broil the eggplant briefly, turning over so that both sides are softened and golden brown (do not worry if parts of the eggplant are slightly charred, but watch carefully so it doesn't burn). Remove from the oven and set aside.
Prepare the meat sauce. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet. Cook the onions on medium heat until they turn slightly golden brown, stirring regularly (about 5 minutes). Now add the ground lamb. Cook the lamb until fully browned, tossing regularly. Drain the lamb from any excess fat and return to the skillet. Add the dried oregano, cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg, and hot paprika. Stir to coat the meat with the spices. Add the wine and boil for 1 minute to reduce. Stir in the canned tomatoes, sugar, and broth. Simmer over medium-low heat for 20 to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oven to 350 degrees F and work on the bechamel.
Make the bechamel. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper. Cook until golden (if needed, added a little more olive oil). Gradually add the warmed milk, whisking continuously. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the nutmeg. In a small bowl, whisk a small amount of the hot bechamel mixture with the 2 eggs. Then return all to the pan and stir into the bechamel mixture. Continue to stir or whisk the mixture bringing to a gentle boil for just 2 more minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Remove from the heat and allow to cool and thicken a little more. (You should have a creamy, thick and smooth bechamel sauce.)
Assemble the moussaka. When ready, lightly oil a 9 ½" x 13" oven-safe baking dish. Layer half the eggplant slices on the bottom. Add the meat sauce and spread well. Add the remaining eggplant slices. Pour the bechamel on top and spread to cover all the eggplant, then sprinkle with the bread crumbs.
Bake. Bake the moussaka casserole on the center rack of the heated oven for 45 minutes. If you need to, transfer the baking pan to the top rack and broil briefly so that the top of the moussaka gains a nice golden brown color (watch carefully).
Remove from the heat and let the casserole sit for 10 minutes before cutting through into squares to serve
Servings : 12
Ready in : 1 hour 30 Minutes
Course : Dinner, Lunch, Main Dish
Recipe Type : Italian, Mediterranean
How to get started?
If you like the Mediterranean diet and want more recipes like this?
We do recommend getting The 21 Day Mediterranean Diet Challenge. It's a weekly Mediterranean Meal Plan, grocery lists and recipes to help you get started.
Let us take all the hard work out of the Mediterranean diet for you! Hundreds of women are experiencing the same struggle you’re going through right now.
- 21-days of meal planning, done for you
- Complete shopping lists, already organized
- No Stress, Feel happier and energetic
Want easy Mediterranean recipes and meals that's planned for you?