Thursday, May 3, 2012

# recipes

You say Moussaka, I say delish!

I know you must be thinking why are you showing me a half rated casserole but I wanted to  show the layers of the moussaka as well as that my family ate half of it (the six year old had two helpings of it).

I was in my garden and noticed I had a ton of eggplants and my plant seemed to be not doing so well, so I picked them off. I than thought what the heck could I use all of these eggplants for and I did a search on the internet for s recipe. Lots of things came up but these were small eggplants so many didn't work out. I than stumbled upon a easy Moussaka recipe on I thought hey I have all of those things (I usually try to have a well stocked pantry so I can experiment with recipes that I find.

The basic recipe is as follows and I added some of my own touches as well added in to make a meal that my family loved.

I took about 5-6 small Japanese eggplants and diced them up.
I than added two small red peppers and diced them up.

I sautéed them in a pan with some olive oil untie they were turning brown.

I than drained them onto a plate and reheated the pan and added the following:

1 large onion chopped up
I lb of ground beef
1/2 cup of butter

I browned the onions and ground beef. Once they were browned I than added one 8 once can of tomato sauce (I think one can of season diced tomatoes would work as well). I than added a tablespoon of cinnamon, minced garlic, garlic salt, cumin, paprika, and cinnamon.  I stirred it all together and let it simmer for about 15 minutes.

I than boiled 2 dry cups of noodles (you could use egg, or elbow) as directed. As that was boiling and the meat mixture was simmering, I than started on the béchamel sauce which tops it all.

I took 4 cups of 2 percent milk and heated it till it was just about boiling. I than took another pan, and added in 1/2 cup of butter, and 6 tablespoons of flour. I melted the butter and whisked in the flour until smooth. I than slowly added in the hot milk, stirring as I went. The sauce thickens up pretty face. I seasoned it with salt and pepper as well.

Once all of that is done , I start the layering. Moussaka is basically Greek lasagna. I started off with a 9x13 pan and first added the layer of eggplant and peppers. I than topped it off with the meat mixture and 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese. I than added the boiled noodles on top of that. Finally I took the béchamel sauce and spread that over the top. I added another 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese and some paprika to add some color. I baked it at 350 for one hour. I served it with a Caesar salad and some bread.

Of course because I made it for Sunday dinner we finished it with our favorite Blueberry Cobbler.

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