The most popular recipe of Greek cuisine
Moussaka is one of the most traditional Greek recipes along with Tzatziki sauce, based on yogurt, cucumber and dill; the spanakopita, here you can see the recipe; the dolmadakia or dolmades, grape leaves stuffed with rice and minced meat accompanied by lemon sauce; gyros, pieces of meat with vegetables that are usually consumed in pita bread; or the baklava, which can be salty (with chicken) or sweet (stuffed with almonds and dipped in honey).
Eggplant is frequently used in Greek cuisine, so there are numerous dishes with this vegetable. Thus, we find melitzanosalata, a cream spread with eggplant, feta cheese, almonds, garlic and olive oil; or the moussaka, a kind of lasagna with slices of eggplant and lamb.
Light the stove, sauté some onions and prepare the filling of this Greek dish in harmony with S.Pellegrino.
Ingredients for 4 people
- 2 eggplants
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 500 g of minced lamb meat
- 300 g homemade tomato sauce
- 100 ml white wine
- 50 g grated Parmesan cheese
- 20 g butter
- Ground black pepper
For the bechamel sauce
- 30 g butter
- 50 g wheat flour
- 700 ml of milk
- Ground white pepper
Step by step elaboration
- Wash the eggplants and cut into slices. Place in a strainer, sprinkle with salt and let the water release for an hour. Then, wash the eggplant slices to remove the salt and dry them with absorbent paper.
- Prepare the filling while the eggplant is draining.
- Peel and chop the garlic and onion cloves. Heat some extra virgin olive oil in a pan and simmer over low heat until the onion is translucent.
- Add the minced meat of lamb and salt and pepper to taste. Raise the heat and stir so that the meat is not caked and is very loose.
- When the meat changes color, water with the wine and let the alcohol evaporate.
- Finally, add the homemade tomato sauce and cook over low heat for 15 minutes or until there are no remaining liquid.
- Meanwhile brush each eggplant slice with extra virgin olive oil and mark on the grill. It can also be fried, but the moussaka is more greasy because the eggplant absorbs a lot of oil.
For the bechamel sauce
- To prepare the bechamel sauce, heat the butter in a saucepan and add the flour. Stir a couple of minutes to toast it so it doesn’t taste raw.
- Add half of the milk and stir without stopping with some rods to eliminate possible lumps until it begins to thicken. Then add the rest of the milk, salt and pepper to taste and season with a little nutmeg. Continue stirring while simmering for 15 minutes.
Moussaka assembly and termination
- Cover the base of a rectangular fountain with slices of eggplant and, on them, spread the mixture of meat and tomato. Place another layer of eggplant and, finally, cover with the béchamel sauce.
- Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and cover with butter flakes.
- Bake in the oven, preheated to 180ºC, for 40 minutes or until the surface begins to brown.
- Let it temper out of the oven a few minutes before serving.
‘Harmonies in Flavors and Fragrances’. By Juan Muñoz Ramos.
Agua S.Pellegrino and Protos 27, perfect companions of intensity and flavor. This moussaka with the béchamel and the gratin cheese would be too unctuous, but it is wisely accompanied by this Bolognese that brings balance and acidity. What a curiosity the harmony already in the recipe … And so we must continue, looking for products that marry us perfectly and offer quality and balance, freshness and flavor.
That is why we are never wrong when, before a dish with so much flavor, we choose a water as tasty as S.Pellegrino, which offers us a fine bubble to keep the flavors beyond the intake. Next to it, a great wine, which doesn’t need to be expensive. We are talking about a Ribera from those of before, now and always, this is Protos 27, tasty, elegant and fruity.
Dear friends, as you can see, there are neither large nor small plates. Greatness resides in companions, such as water and wine. This is what gets a water like S.Pellegrino and this great Protos.
- We can aromatize the meat mixture with a little oregano, thyme or any other herb of our liking. Incorporate it when it is cooking in the pan.
- The béchamel must be thick so that it does not slip between the eggplants. Its function is to serve as coverage.
- Although this dish is prepared with unpeeled eggplant, the skin makes cutting a bit difficult. For a more aesthetic result when serving, peel the eggplant.
- For a more filling moussaka, cover the base of the dish with semi-fried potato slices and, on them, proceed with the assembly as explained before.
End this amazing meal with a Red Apple Crumble, click here to see the complete recipe.