Traditional Greek Moussaka recipe (Moussaka with Béchamel)

Sabrina Muntean

Sabrina Muntean

8th August 2016

Traditional Greek Moussaka recipe (Moussaka with Béchamel)

This dish is a legend! Creamy, juicy and absolutely delicious. Greek moussaka (moussaka) is one of the most popular dishes in Greece, served in almost every tavern and prepared in every household on special occasions and big family meals and for good reason!

Ingredients

  • To prepare a traditional Greek Moussaka recipe, luscious layers of juicy minced beef (or lamb) are cooked in a tomato based sauce, layered with sweet eggplants and creamy béchamel sauce and baked together until golden perfection.

Method

Greek Moussaka recipe – Prepare the meat sauce
The traditional Greek moussaka recipe calls for either minced lamb or a mix of lamb and beef. But if you can’t handle its strong flavour and prefer a lighter version try substituting with good quality minced beed or veal. To prepare the meat sauce for this moussaka recipe, the ground beef is sautéed in olive oil, flavoured with onions and garlic and then simmered in red wine and tomato sauce. The aromatic herbs and spices used in the traditional moussaka recipe penetrate the meat and give a really characteristic taste and smell which permeates the house, once put in the oven! Let the sauce simmer for a while to allow the flavours to mingle.
Are you a vegetarian? Not to worry, there is always a way to enjoy this delicious dish! Discover my latest delicious Vegetarian Greek Moussaka recipe with a delicious mushroom based sauce replacing the traditional mince.
Greek Moussaka recipe – Prepare the Béchamel sauce
The creamy béchamel sauce is the most essential part for a traditional Greek moussaka recipe and probably the trickiest part too. To achieve the perfect texture for your béchamel sauce, add the milk (preferably lukewarm) a little bit at a time whilst constantly stirring. The perfect béchamel sauce for your moussaka should be smooth and creamy. The key is to whisk the sauce constantly to allow each time the flour to absorb the milk, so that it doesn’t get lumpy. Cook the sauce over medium-low heat in order to prevent it from burning and sticking on the bottom of the pan, but be careful to cook it enough, until you can’t taste the flour and is thick enough.
Greek Moussaka recipe – Prepare the vegetables
The base for a traditional Greek moussaka is most commonly fried eggplants. Some moussaka recipes also use sliced potatoes, so if you like potatoes, try adding a layer of sliced potatoes as the first layer to this amazing dish for some extra comfort during the winter months. The traditional Greek moussaka recipe calls for fried eggplants (and potatoes), but for a lighter alternative, try drizzling the aubergines (and potatoes) with some olive oil and bake them for 20 minutes instead of frying them. Some eggplants may be bitter, so it is very important to remove the bitterness by seasoning with salt and letting them stand for half an hour in a collander.

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