It doesn’t get more Greek than a plate of Moussaka though Turks may beg to differ. In Arabic countries the dish is served cold whereas the Balkan Moussaka is served hot. What differentiates the Greek version are the layers that are separately cooked before being combined in the final baking process. The modern Greek version was probably formulated by chef Tselementes in the Twenties…

Serves: 1 full dish Preparation time: 20m Cooks in: 2 hours Ready in: 2 hours and 20 minutes

Ingredients

6 large eggplants

Frying oil

For the minced meat sauce:

700 grams of minced beef

1 large onion, grated

1 glass of white wine

1 coffee cup of oil

2 table spoons of tomato paste

5 grains of spices

6 table spoons of finely chopped parsley

salt, pepper

For the bechamel sauce:

6 tablespoons of butter

8 tablespoons of flour

800 ml milk

3 eggs

nutmeg

salt, pepper

mousakas

Method

Step 1

Cut the eggplants into slices of 1 cm each. Salt these and place them on a sieve for half an hour. Rinse these with water and squeeze out the juices.

Step 2

Dry out the slices and fry these in ample frying oil until they are golden brown on both sides. Place these on kitchen paper to absorb the juice. Another option would be to brush them with olive oil and grill these.

Step 3

Prepare the minced meat. Heat the oil and saute the finely chopped onion. Add the minced meat and keep stirring. Add white sauce. Dissolve the tomato paste in some water and add it to the minced meat. Add spice, parsley, salt and peper and keep stirring until all the juices have dried up. Put the minced meat to the side so that it cools down.

Step 4

Prepare the bechamel sauce. Heat the butter in a pot, add the flour and sauté until the mixture darkens. Add warm milk while constantly stirring the mixture. Pull away from the heat, as soon as the bechamel sauce thickens. Add the spice, salt and pepper. Add cheese and keep stirring while folding the eggs into the mixture. Stir fast until the mixture sets.

Step 5

Heat the oven to 170 degrees. Place half the fried eggplants at the bottom of the dish. Place the minced meat on top and level with a spoon so that it is evenly spread. Add a second layer of eggplants. Pour the bechamel sauce on top and spread it out evenly. Place the dish in the oven for one hour until a golden crust forms on top of the sauce. Let it cool down for half an hour before serving.

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