Mousaka (Eggplant Lasagna)

Vegetarians can opt for thin slices of potatoes instead of ground beef. Top with slices of Kefalotiri, a flavorful Greek cheese made with sheep’s milk. (Kefalotiri can be purchased at most Mediterranean delis.)

moussaka

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggplants, peeled and sliced into 1-in (2.5-cm) pieces
  • 1 tbsp Eleni® Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ¼ cup Eleni® Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1½ lb (¾ kg) lean ground beef (or lamb)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes (fresh or canned)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • sea salt, to taste

  • Béchamel Sauce:
  • ¼ cup Eleni® Extra Virgin Olive Oil (or butter)
  • ¼ cup unbleached white flour
  • 3 cups milk, room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • sea salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • ½ tsp nutmeg

  • Topping:
  • ½ cup grated Kefalotiri cheese
Serves:  4-6

Directions

Set oven to broil.

Salt eggplant slices on both sides and arrange them on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Brush each slice, on both sides, with olive oil, using a pastry brush. Place the sheet under the broiler and bake for 3–5 minutes on each side, until golden brown.

Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan on medium. Stir in the ground meat and onions and sauté until meat has browned and the onions are soft. Add parsley, tomatoes, salt, and pepper and simmer until liquid is reduced, about 30 minutes. Mix in breadcrumbs and remove from heat.

Brush a 9 x 12-in (23 x 30-cm) baking pan with olive oil and line bottom of pan with eggplant slices. Cover with one layer of the meat mixture, then continue alternating eggplant and meat layers until all ingredients are used.

To make the béchamel: heat olive oil (or butter) in a small saucepan on medium-low. Slowly whisk in the flour and then the milk, and continue whisking until the mixture is smooth. Beat the eggs in a small mixing bowl, then add to the milk mixture, continuing to stir and making sure the egg doesn’t harden. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and continue to stir until the sauce is thick (about 15–20 minutes).

Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).

Pour béchamel over the eggplant and meat layers in the baking pan. Sprinkle with grated cheese and bake for 1 hour or until top has browned.

 

Excerpt taken from From the Olive Grove: Mediterranean Cooking with Olive Oil. Published by Arsenal Pulp Press (2010).

Cookbook

Olive Oil Cookbook

From the Olive Grove
Mediterranean Cooking with Olive Oil

A wonderful combination of Greek classics, treasured family recipes, and some wonderful recipes as supplied by the chefs who use our olive oil.
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Prevents Calcium Loss
Olive oil promotes bone development and mineralization; studies show the more you consume the greater the benefit.
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