Sofia’s Traditional Moussaka | KALI OREXI

Sofia’s Traditional Moussaka | KALI OREXI

Sofia’s Moussaka is a beautiful, traditional moussaka with substantial layers of potato and eggplant separated by a spiced, sweet meat-sauce and topped with crumbled feta, creamy béchamel sauce and grated kasseri cheese!! It sounds so good, because it is! Watch now and learn how to make!

Ingredients

For the meat sauce
1 cup extra virgin olive oil EVOO
4 medium onions finely chopped
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
1.2 kg beef mince full fat
1.2 kg canned diced tomato – puréed
1 large bunch parsley – finely chopped
2 large sticks cinnamon
4 bay leaves
2 whole nutmegs
8 whole cloves
4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper

For Layering
4 extra-large potatoes
3-4 large eggplants
400 g feta cheese crumbled

For the béchamel sauce
2 litres full-cream milk
2 whole eggs
225 g sifted plain flour
100 g salted butter

 

Preparation



Preparing the meat sauce

  1. Sauté the onions in the olive oil until they begin to brown
  2. Add the mince-meat and push down on it with a wooden spoon to help break it down
  3. Continue mixing and pushing down on the mince until it cooks through and browns a little
  4. Add the puréed tomatoes and mix through
  5. Add a little water to any tomato residue remaining in the cans or food processor (if either used), swirl to release the residue and add that water to the pot
  6. Add the parsley and mix in well
  7. Place the cloves and nutmeg in a closed tea-strainer or bouquet-garni container. Place it in the pot and add the cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, parsley, salt and pepper
  8. Simmer until all the water has reduced, leaving a layer of orange-hued oil on top - about an hour or so
  9. Remove the cinnamon, bay leaves and tea-strainer from the pot

Preparing the eggplants and potatoes

  1. Peel the potatoes and trim them to form a rectangular block
  2. Cut them into thick, rectangular slices (2cm thick)
  3. Bake the potato slices at 200°C, ensuring they brown nicely on both sides
  4. Top and tail the eggplants
  5. Cut them lengthways into thick, rectangular slices (2-3cm thick)
  6. Bake the eggplant slices at 200°C, again ensuring they brown nicely on both sides

Assembling the moussaka

  1. Line the base of a large baking dish with the cooked potatoes ensuring no gaps remain
  2. Spoon one half of the meat sauce onto the cooked potatoes
  3. Layer the cooked eggplants on top, ensuring no gaps remain (Sofia suggests orienting the eggplants perpendicular to the potatoes)
  4. Spoon the remaining meat sauce on top
  5. Sprinkle top evenly with the feta

Preparing the béchamel sauce

  1. Place all ingredients in a pot on medium heat and stir continuously with a whisk, until all the flour is combined and the butter has melted
  2. Continue to heat and stir the sauce until it thickens and shows the first signs of bubbling
  3. Remove from the heat and pour on top of the final meat sauce layer
  4. Using the back of a spoon or a spatula, spread the béchamel evenly across the top of the moussaka

Finishing the moussaka

  1. Drizzle the top of the moussaka sparingly with EVOO and generously top with finely grated kasseri

Baking the moussaka

  1. Bake the moussaka at 200°C for approximately 30-40 minutes, until the top has browned
  2. Keep an eye on the moussaka as it bakes and place pieces of either baking paper or aluminium foil over the areas that have browned
  3. Continue to do this until the entire moussaka has browned on top

Serving the moussaka

  1. Allow the moussaka to cool and set for 1 hour before serving
  2. Serve and enjoy!