Hearty Moussaka With Layers Of Potatoes And Eggplant

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Moussaka, a layered masterpiece from Greece, is a dish that warms the soul. This recipe takes you through the steps of creating a flavorful moussaka with juicy ground meat, creamy béchamel sauce, and tender potatoes.

Ingredients:

Greek Moussaka With Potatoes Recipe
Greek Moussaka With Potatoes Recipe

For the Meat Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground lamb or beef
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 cup red wine (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • For the Potato Layer:

  • 3 large russet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • For the Béchamel Sauce:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk, warmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • For Finishing Touches:

  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)

  • Instructions:

    1. Prepare the Meat Sauce: Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for an additional minute.
    2. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the ground meat. Break it up with a spoon as it cooks until browned. Drain any excess fat.
    3. Add the diced tomatoes, red wine (if using), tomato paste, oregano, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the sauce thickens slightly. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

    4. Prepare the Potato Layer: Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). In a large bowl, toss the sliced potatoes with olive oil, oregano, salt, and pepper. Spread the potatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until tender and slightly golden brown.

    5. Make the Béchamel Sauce: In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Gradually whisk in the warmed milk, a little at a time, until the sauce thickens and becomes smooth. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the nutmeg, salt, and pepper.

    6. Assemble the Moussaka: Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish. Spread half of the meat sauce on the bottom of the dish. Top with a layer of the baked potatoes. Pour the béchamel sauce over the potatoes, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with half of the Parmesan cheese.

    7. Top with the remaining meat sauce and spread evenly. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese.

    8. Bake: Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and bubbly. Let cool slightly before serving. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving):

    This recipe yields approximately 8 servings. Please note that nutrition information can vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

    Calories: 500-600 (approximate)

  • Fat: 30-40 grams (approximate)
  • Protein: 30-40 grams (approximate)
  • Carbohydrates: 40-50 grams (approximate)

  • Conclusion

    Moussaka is a delightful and satisfying dish that’s perfect for sharing with family and friends. The combination of savory meat sauce, creamy béchamel, and tender potatoes creates a truly delectable experience. With this recipe, you can easily create this Greek classic in your own kitchen and enjoy its rich flavors and satisfying textures.

    After the Moussaka FAQs:

    1. Can I use ground chicken or turkey instead of beef or lamb?

    Absolutely! Ground chicken or turkey can be substituted for the ground beef or lamb in this recipe. You may need to adjust the cooking time slightly depending on the chosen protein.

    2. What can I do with leftover moussaka?