Delicious Mediterranean Lamb And Eggplant Moussaka Recipe

Lamb moussaka is probably the best loved of all Mediterranean dishes, not just in Greece, but all over the world. This is a classic, rich and flavorsome Greek dish, filled with the goodness of vegetables, lamb and creamy cheese. Although, it takes some time to make this dish, you could always prepare it in advance and freeze it, unbaked.

Here Is The Recipe For The Authentic Lamb And Eggplant Moussaka:

Mediterranean Lamb And Eggplant Moussaka Recipe

Preparation Time: 1 Hour
Cooking Time: 1 Hour
Serves: 4

Ingredients:

For Preparing Eggplant:

Eggplant – two medium (three pounds)
Olive oil – three tablespoons
Pepper – one teaspoon
Salt – as required

For Preparing Potatoes:

Potatoes – three medium (two pounds)
Olive oil –  quarter cup
Salt – as required

For Preparing Meat Sauce:

Extra virgin olive oil – two tablespoons
Onion, finely chopped – two cups
Garlic, minced – two cloves
Lean, ground lamb – one pound
Dry red wine – half cup
Crushed canned tomatoes – one cup
Parsley, finely chopped – quarter cup
Tomato paste – one tablespoon
Nutmeg, finely grated – quarter teaspoon
Dried raisins – half cup
Dried Oregano – half teaspoon
Ground cinnamon half teaspoon
Pepper powder half teaspoon

For Preparing Béchamel Sauce (White Sauce):

Whole milk – three cups
Unsalted butter – quarter cup
Parmesan cheese – half cup
All purpose flour – half cup
Eggs whites, lightly beaten – three
Nutmeg, finely grated – quarter teaspoon

Methods:

Step 1

Slice the egg plants, length wise in quarter inch thick pieces. In a large colander, layer the eggplant slices after sprinkling them with salt. Leave it aside, for at least half an hour.

Step 2

Cut the potatoes into quarter inch slices. Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan and fry the potatoes in batches, frying a single layer, at a time. Fry for about two minutes, on each side, until the potatoes are tender. Transfer the fried potatoes to a plate lined with paper towels and remove the excess oil. Sprinkle salt for seasoning.

Step 3

Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Rinse the eggplant slices in water to remove excess salt and dry the excess water, using paper towels. Use salt and pepper for seasoning. Line a baking tray with aluminum sheets, spray oil and arrange the eggplants in a single layer. Spray some more oil on the top and bake for half an hour, flipping once.

Step 4

Heat a heavy bottom pan on medium heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is heated, add chopped onion and minced garlic. Saute for a few minutes, till onion becomes translucent. Now add the ground lamb, crushed tomato and tomato paste and stir thoroughly with a heavy wooden spoon to break up the lamb meat. After sauteing for five minutes, add red wine and allow it to simmer for some time and reduce. Once the liquid has reduced, stir in the grated nutmeg, parsley, oregano, raisins and pepper powder. Continue stirring for a few minutes on low heat and switch off the flame. Leave it aside, to cool.

Step 5

For preparing béchamel, melt the unsalted butter on low heat. Gradually, stir in the all purpose flour and saute for a few minutes, until it is golden brown in color and the raw flavor has gone. Now, slowly add the milk, stirring continuously. Simmer for about five minutes until the sauce thickens. Now, add the beaten eggs, whisking vigorously. Remove from heat and add the parmesan cheese, after setting aside three teaspoons for assembling. Now add grated nutmeg and required salt and whisk vigorously, until the sauce becomes smooth and velvety.

Step 6

Heat the oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit. Apply baking spray on a baking dish. Arrange the fried potato slices in a single layer, overlapping each other, at the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle one teaspoon of the reserved parmesan cheese over the layer. Now place a layer of egg plants, on top of the potato layer, overlapping each other and sprinkle the second spoon of parmesan cheese over this layer. Spread the meat sauce gently over the eggplants, to form an even layer. Pour the béchamel sauce on top of the meat sauce, in a thick, uniform layer. Sprinkle the third spoon of parmesan cheese on top.

Step 7

In a preheated oven, bake the moussaka for about one hour, till it turns golden brown in color. Garnish with fresh oregano sprigs and serve.

For Preparing In Advance:

You can also prepare the moussaka in advance and freeze it for up to three months. For doing this, after layering the moussaka in the baking dish, wrap the unbaked moussaka tightly with plastic film. Now cover the moussaka and the baking dish with a tightly wrapped aluminum foil and freeze it. On the day prior to baking, transfer it from the freezer to the refrigerator, remove the aluminum foil and leave it there for at least 24 hours, before baking.



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