For those who haven't tried moussaka, it should be one on your dinner list later this week 👍
Traditionally Greek and loaded with butter, milk & cheese it can be quite a heavy dish (and not great for those who are dairy intolerant) we have found a recipe that substitutes the traditional bechamel sauce with a lighter version made from cauliflower & a good handful of parmesan. Definitely give this a try if you are looking for a school holiday dish for the whole family.
For Moussaka filling and eggplants:
• 500g lean ground beef/Or soy protien alternative if you don’t eat meat
• 1 onion peeled and chopped
• 1 garlic clove peeled and minced
• 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
• 1/2 tsp sea salt
• 1 tsp nutmeg
• 1/2 tsp allspice
• 2 cans crushed tomatoes
• 1/4 cup tomato paste
• 2 medium eggplants
For the cauliflower sauce
• 3 large garlic cloves peeled and minced
• 1 tbsp olive oil or coconut oil
• 3 cups cauliflower florets (about one small cauliflower)
• 3 cups vegetable stock
• 1 cup parmesan shredded (divided)
• 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
For the filling:
1 Place beef in a medium saucepan over medium heat, break it into small chunks and cook until brown, about 4 minutes. Drain liquid and transfer to a bowl.
2 Add onion and garlic to the same saucepan and season with salt, pepper, cinnamon and allspice. Mix and cook for about 3 minutes.
3 Add ground beef back to the pan along with crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to a boil on high heat then reduce to low and simmer uncovered for one hour.
4 Preheat oven to 200C.
5 While beef/soy protien is cooking, prepare eggplants. Remove eggplants' ends and slice them thinly.
6 Spray a baking sheet with olive oil and place 12 eggplant slices on it. You may need to use two baking sheets or bake them in two batches depending on the size of your oven. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and let cool.
For the cauliflower sauce:
1 Melt oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-low heat and cook garlic until fragrant but not browned (or it will be bitter). Turn off the heat and set aside.
2 Bring the stock to a boil in a medium-sized pot, add cauliflower and cook until very tender, about 6 minutes. Do not drain. Using a slotted spoon, transfer cauliflower into your blender or food processor. Add 1/2 cup cooking liquid, cooked garlic with butter, 1/2 cup parmesan and pepper. Pulse until very smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed. Set aside.
1 Place half of the eggplant on the bottom of a large baking dish, cover with half of the beef mixture. Place another layer of eggplant, then the remaining beef mixture on top.
2 Using a rubber spatula, spread the cauliflower sauce evenly and top with 1/2 cup parmesan. Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown. Remove from the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes before cutting and serving