This recipe wasn’t a win for our bold palates, but it was really fun to put together and photograph so I am going to go ahead and post it anyway, for those of you who might enjoy these more subtle, mediterranean flavors. I might try it next time with a different spice combination. Maybe some cumin, paprika and cayenne. But for now…
Moussaka is a Greek dish usually made with lamb, eggplant, tomatoes and cheese. This recipe will be a little different from the traditional recipe because it is grain-free. I also used beef because to me ground lamb has kind of a funny taste.
Start by peeling and slicing up the eggplant. Preparing the slices with salt will draw out moisture and bitterness, then frying them golden gets them ready for the dish.
Next, blend up the tomatoes together with the greens (gotta get those greens!)
Boiling the greens first softens them. I tried to skip this step and ended up with stringy stems tied around the blades of the blender. So this is an important step.
Next, saute onions and garlic, brown the meat, add the spices and mix in the tomatoes.
Simmer down now.
While that cooks, whisk together the ingredients for the topping – yogurt, eggs and parmesan cheese.
from Mark’s Daily Apple
1 large eggplant
1 bunch of leafy greens (sullock, kale, or spinach)
1 pound diced tomatoes ( or a 28oz can)
3 Tb olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound ground beef or lamb
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
1 cup full-fat Greek yogurt (or regular yogurt strained)
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper, to taste
1. Peel and cut eggplant into 1/4 inch slices. Sprinkle with salt and let sit in colander for 30 minutes. Rinse off and pat dry.
2. Heat 2 Tb oil in pan and fry eggplant on both sides until soft and brown. Set aside.
3. Add remaining 1 Tb oil to pan and saute onions and garlic until tender.
4. Meanwhile, remove stems from greens and boil for a few minutes until soft (not necessary if using spinach). Blend together with tomatoes in blender or food processor.
5. Add meat, cinnamon and allspice to the onions and stir until meat is evenly browned. Add tomato sauce and let simmer for about 30 minutes, until it is nice and thick. Add dill towards the end, along with salt and pepper to taste.
6. Meanwhile, stir together eggs, yogurt and cheese and preheat the oven to 350’F
7. In a 8×8′ baking dish, place a layer of eggplant on the bottom, then pour in meat mixture, top with remaining slices of eggplant and then with yogurt mixture. (Top with more grated cheese if you like).
8. Bake 45 minutes until golden brown. Let set 20 minutes before cutting.