This classic Greek recipe is a family favourite. Traditional Moussaka would be made with layers of sliced potatoes but I find this makes the dish a little heavy. I’ve experimented with many Moussaka recipes over the years but my latest discovery is to add two beaten eggs to the béchamel as suggested by Felicity Cloake in her ‘Perfect Moussaka’ recipe. It’s a stroke of genius, it creates a light puffy top that rises slightly in the oven and makes this dish even tastier.
Moussaka is not the quickest dish to prepare but I needed something to occupy my mind whilst my daughter had her first settling in session at nursery; and it’s a great freezer- friendly dish so I’ve got a few baby portions saved for later! It always goes down really well with my baby girl, so it’s a good one to have pre-prepared.
4 generous adult portions or 2 adult portions + 4 baby portions
Preparation time: 30 min | Cooking time: 45 min
2 large aubergines, cut lengthways approx 0.5cm thick
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp fresh oregano, finely chopped
500g minced lamb or lamb/mutton mix
olive oil or olive oil spray
2 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
60g plain flour
2 eggs, beaten
Nutmeg, freshly grated
Place the sliced aubergines on a baking tray. Lightly brush with olive oil (I use an olive oil spray so that they are nicely coated but not too oily), flip on the other side and repeat the process before placing in a preheated oven at 180ºC. Bake for approx 30minutes until soft. Check every 10 min to make sure the aubergines aren’t drying out and re-apply oil if needed.
In a frying pan cook the onion in some oil until soft then add the garlic, cinnamon and mince lamb. Brown the mince, then add the tomato puree, red wine vinegar and water. Cook for approximately 30 minutes on a low heat, then add the fresh oregano.
To make the béchamel, melt the butter in a medium sized pan , then add the flour and leave to cook for a minute before adding the milk gradually. Mix using a whisk until you have a smooth béchamel that has thickened. Take off the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes before mixing in the beaten eggs. Add some freshly grated nutmeg to taste.
Cover a large ovenproof dish with a third of the aubergines and cover with half of the meat. Repeat the layers and finish with aubergines then pour over the béchamel. Bake in the oven at 180 ºC for 45 minutes approx or until the top has browned. Allow the moussaka to cool slightly before cutting into squares and serving.
Season the adult portions with salt and pepper to taste.