(Makes 1 Chafing Dish Pan(20 “L 12”W 2.5 “ D)
6 large Eggplants (Peeled sliced in 1/4 inch slices and Brined**)
5 large potatoes cut into 1/4 inch slices (Lightly Salt potatoes after frying)
Canola Oil for frying the potatoes
4 lbs ground beef* or lamb
4 tbs olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
6 cloves garlic minced
2.5 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp Ground Nutmeg
4 tbs fresh parsley Chopped
1.5 tsp Salt
1/2tsp Black pepper
8 oz tomato paste
1 tbs Dried or Fresh oregano
1 tbs Lemon zest
2 cups Parmesan (grated)
* I use some Lemon Zest with the Ground Beef but not with the Lamb
** Brine Sliced Eggplant
Brining the Eggplant
2 tablespoons fine sea salt
1 cup water (warm)
Dissolve salt in warm water and then add 6-8 more cups water to that.
Place Eggplant slices into the brining liquid and let sit for 1/2 hour. Water will turn brown.
Remove slices from water and pat dry applying some pressure to squeeze out as much water as possible.
Cooking The Eggplant
Drizzle olive oil on a baking sheet place eggplant slices on tray in one layer. Drizzle a little;e more olive oil on top.
Bake at 400 for 40 minutes total. Flip slices over at about 20 minutes.
Place on paper towels and set aside.
Fry The Potatoes
Peel and slice the potatoes in 1/4 inch slices.
Place 1/2-1 inch of Canola oil in a pan and fry the potatoes batches.
When the potatoes take on color they are done. ***Put on paper towels and lightly salt and set aside.
***Do not stack the potato slices on top of each other. They will stick together and become difficult to work with.
Fry the Ground Meat
Place 4 tbs on olive oil in a pan.
Place Onions and Garlic in the pan and fry til translucent and a bit of brown begins to appear.
Now add the meat stir to incorporate the onions and Garlic.
Now add remaining ingredients except the cheese. Set Aside.
Assembling the Moussaka
Now in a big Roasting Pan ( I like to use a Pan for a full sized Chafing dish)
Place a single layer of Eggplant slices in pan. Now a single layer of Potato slices then Spread the meat out over that layer in an even layer.
Add Cheese in an even layer over the meat.
Now place another layer of Egg plant.
Make the Béchamel
1/2 gal milk (8 cups)
2 sticks butter
2 cups flour
6 egg yolks
1 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp salt
Separate yolks from whites and set aside.
Put Milk in a pan and heat until it steams a bit.
While milk is heating place butter in a pan, melt ,then whisk in the flour making a Roux.
Place a label of warmed milk into the egg yolks and whisk to temper then and keep them from scrambling.
Now pour some milk into the Roux whisk to mix now add a bit more milk whisk again now add remaining Milk, Salt,Nutmeg, and the eggs.
Whisk until thick. You are done.
Pour the Béchamel over the last layer of Eggplant. Spread it evenly over the entire pan.
Bake The Moussaka
Bake at 400
Bake until top gets brown about 40 minutes
If you cut into it right away it will be runny. The Béchamel will be wet and you may not get nice clean pieces.
Let set for a while and cool.