Traditional Greek moussaka with bechamel sauce, the best traditional recipe rootsandcook’s style.
I was in Crete 2 weeks ago and after I tried different moussaka recipes I had to create a version of the traditional moussaka at home. So no deep-fried potatoes nor deep-fried aubergine, but juicy, creamy, spiced and delicious homemade moussaka.
We will use all the secret spices that give moussaka that special flavour and will bake it with a creamy bechamel sauce topped with cheese.
If you are looking for more Greek recipes here are some of my favourites.
Juicy and full of flavour traditional Greek moussaka, are you ready?
Traditional Greek moussaka with bechamel sauceCourse: MainCuisine: GreekDifficulty: Medium
500 g ground meat (beef or half beef and half pork)
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
400 g canned tomato
1 tablespoon tomato pureé
1 carrot, chopped
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick (Ceylon cinnamon)
1/2 cup red wine
- Bechamel sauce
400 ml milk
45 g unsalted butter
25 g olive oil
70 g all-purpose flour
- Remove the stalks from the eggplants and cut them lengthwise into slices, 0,5 cm thick.
- Season each slice and place them in a colander for 30 minutes. This will soften the eggplant and make it less bitter.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C.
- Slice the potatoes into 0,5 cm slices. Place them in a bowl, add a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix them.
- Place the potato slices in a baking tray and bake for 20 minutes at 200°C.
- In the meantime, prepare the meat sauce: Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Stir in the chopped onion, garlic and carrot and sauté, until softened. About 5 minutes.
- Season the meat with salt and pepper. Stir in the ground meat and sauté for 3 minutes or until slightly golden.
- Pour the red wine or port wine and cook for 2 minutes or until it evaporates.
- Add the tomato pureé, canned tomato, cinnamon stick, bay leaf, cloves, oregano and thyme.
- Add ½ cup of water. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil.
- Turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes with the lid on. Discard the cinnamon, clove and bay leaf.
- Meanwhile, rinse the eggplant with water and pat dry. Heat a large pan with a bit of oil. Cook eggplant slices from both sides until tender, about 1-2 minutes on each side. Set aside.
- Bechamel sauce:
- Heat the butter and the oil on a medium size pot over medium heat.
- When it melts, add the flour and whisk quickly. Cook for 1 minute and add ¼ of the milk, whisking constantly. Add another ¼ of the milk and keep stirring. Add the rest of the milk, a pinch of salt, pepper and nutmeg, and boil over low heat until the sauce thickens. About 4-5 minutes. Set aside.
- Grease a medium size deep baking dish with some olive oil.
- Add a layer of aubergine on the bottom and a layer of baked potatoes over it.
- Add ½ of the meat filling and spread it out evenly.
- Add a second layer of aubergine.
- Pour in the rest of the meat filling and spread it out evenly.
- Cover it with a layer of potato and aubergine.
- Top with a layer of bechamel sauce and sprinkle with some grated cheese (parmesan)
- Bake for 35-40 minutes at 180°C. Allow the moussaka to rest and cool down for 15 minutes before serving.
This is the deep baking pan I use to assembly the moussaka:
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