Greek Moussaka

(Food & Wine’s Photo… We were so hungry, I forgot to take pictures!)

A few nights ago I made Greek Moussaka for dinner; a dish that is similar to eggplant parmesan and/or lasagna, except it has a white béchamel sauce on top.  Greek Moussaka typically has three layers – eggplant slices, ground lamb, and béchamel sauce.  I used a recipe from Food & Wine magazine that I adapted to fit my own personal preferences and tastes.  First, lamb is expensive – I used ground beef, since I already had it in my freezer.  Ground turkey would be just as suitable and even healthier for you too.  Second, cream sauces, in general, are usually heavy and loaded with salt and calories.  In order to curb our calorie and sodium intake, I used fat-free cream cheese and skim milk to make the sauce.  I added fresh ground pepper to the sauce to compensate for any blandness that may have resulted from using fat-free and skim products.  With some warm bread and a nice glass of dry red wine, this dish was flavorful and satisfying after a long day at work.

  • olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • 1/2 c dry red wine
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 c canned crushed tomatoes (15-ounce can)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 1 eggplant peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/4 c milk
  • 1/4 c Parmesan
  1. Heat the broiler. In a large stainless-steel frying pan, heat 1-2 tablespoons of the oil over moderate heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add the beef and cook until the meat loses its pink flavor, about 4 minutes.
  3. Stir in the wine, tomato paste, tomatoes, bay leaf, cinnamon, allspice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and ground pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, brush both sides of the eggplant slices with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Put the eggplant slices on a large baking sheet and broil until browned, about 5 minutes.
  5. Turn eggplant slices over and broil until browned on the other side, about 5 minutes longer.
  6. Meanwhile in a small saucepan, combine the cream cheese, milk, and ground pepper. Warm over low heat until just melted.
  7. Spray an 11-by-7-inch baking dish. Layer half the eggplant in the dish, then half the meat sauce. Sprinkle with half the Parmesan. Repeat with the remaining eggplant, meat sauce, and Parmesan.
  8. Spoon the cream-cheese sauce on top and broil until just starting to brown, 1 to 2 minutes.

1 Comment

Filed under Main Course

One response to “Greek Moussaka

  1. caitlin

    i was planning on making moussaka this week. thanks for the recipe! xoxo.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s