Sometimes we want to go meatless, so if you also want to avoid eating meat you should try this amazing vegetarian Moussakas recipe.
Moussakas is the most known Greek dish. Sometimes we want to go meatless, so if you also want to avoid eating meat you should try this amazing recipe, with Greek feta and Italian mozzarella, adding lots of onions, feta and a marinara sauce and topped with a bechamel sauce with feta in it.
You will be amazed by the wonderful flavours this dish has.
1. The Eggplants
You can use any type of eggplants (aubergines) but personally I prefer this Greek variety called Tsakonikes.
Tsakonikes eggplants are named after the region they are produced (Tsakonia) Kynouria, a region in Arcadia, Peloponnese.
These eggplants are long, thin, seedless and very sweet, so you don’t have to salt them to draw out bitterness.
You can leave the skin on but I prefer to partially peel each eggplant, as sometimes the skin is hard to digest if you have a sensitive stomach.
I then cut each eggplant in 3 or 4 slices, depending on how big the eggplants are.
Then I shallow fry them in extra virgin olive oil. If you like you can brush the slices with olive oil and bake them but this way it is quicker. After frying them, I put them on kitchen paper to absorb any extra oil.
2. The sauce
Eggplants love tomato sauce made with lots of onions and garlic. I usually make a Marinara Sauce, when tomatoes are ripe and keep them in cups in the freezer.
After frying the onions until translucent, I added the garlic and then the marinara sauce.
3. Greek Béchamel Sauce
Greek Béchamel is a bit different than the French one, as it is made with extra virgin olive oil and flour in equal weight. The flour has to be roasted in the olive oil until it starts browning, so as to release its aroma. It is flavoured with nutmeg, as the French one. Then the milk is added. What makes Greek Béchamel different, is the addition of eggs and cheese. So, after adding the milk and whisking it continuously, the eggs are whisked separately and added gradually so as not to curdle them.
Finally the cheese is added to the bechamel.
Assembling the Vegetarian Moussakas
Add half of the fried eggplants in a 32 x 22 cm (12 ½ x 9 inch) baking pan and season with salt and pepper.
Crumble half the feta on top.
Add the sauce on top and layer the remaining eggplants.
Prepare béchamel sauce and mix in remaining crumbled feta.
Cover the eggplants with the béchamel sauce and crumble some mozzarella on top.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden on top.
1/3 cup olive oil
- 6 medium eggplants
- 2 medium onions, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 100 grams crumbled feta
- 2 tbsp grated mozzarella
- 600 ml of milk (about 3 cups)
- 35 grams olive oil (or butter if you prefer)
- 35 grams all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 100 grams feta
- Preheat oven to 180o C / 350o F.
- Wash and dry the eggplants.
- Heat the olive oil, reserving 2 tbsp, in a non-stick frying pan over high heat. Peel 4 stripes off first eggplant and cut it into 4 equal slices. Fry on each side until golden brown and remove on paper towels to drain.
- Repeat with remaining eggplants, peeling each one just before frying in order not to oxidize.
- When done, add the leftover olive oil and sauté the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Finally, add the marinara sauce and bring to a boil for 5 – 6 minutes.
- Add half of the fried eggplants in a 32 x 22 cm (12 ½ x 9 inch) baking pan and season with salt and pepper.
- Crumble half the feta on top. Add the sauce on top and layer the remaining eggplants.
- Prepare béchamel sauce and mix in remaining crumbled feta. Cover the eggplants with the béchamel sauce and crumble some more graviera or mozzarella on top.
- Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden on top.
Do not add too much salt, as feta is already salty. If you make marinara sauce from scratch, leftover can be stored in plastic cups and stored in the deep freezer to use again in other recipes.
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 505Total Fat 20gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 10gCholesterol 128mgSodium 886mgCarbohydrates 70gFiber 16gSugar 25gProtein 19g
"These values are automatically calculated and offered for guidance only. Their accuracy is not guaranteed."
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,