Let me finish up with a few photos of the grilled eggplant moussaka I made over the weekend. I realize that I also made moussaka in July, and I've made moussaka in different ways several times since 2010 and posted about it. I guess it's one of my favorite kinds of food.
Grilling thick-cut eggplant slices seems to be the tastiest way of preparing them for baking in a moussake sauce. Frying them seems pretty oily to me, and it makes a mess on the stove. Baking them in the oven after brushing the slices with olive oil and sprinkling salt, pepper, and even herbs like thyme on them is good too, and less messy. But grilling gives them great flavor.
I call this one "three little aubergines in a blanket."
I put mozzarella slices in layers in this moussaka, but I'm not sure I would do it that way again. I think some grated Swiss-style cheese like Comté, Gruyère, or even Cheddar would be better. Mozzarella has a lot of water in it, and that water is released as it melts. Then the moussaka meat sauce is a little too liquid. It tastes good, but the moussaka can get too soupy. Here is the moussaka ready for the oven.
I made a white sauce to cook as the top layer of this moussaka. It's actually a sauce Mornay, which is what a white sauce with melted cheese in it is called in French. Instead of starting with a butter-and-flour roux, I made the roux with olive oil and flour. I got that idea from a Julie Andrieu show about making moussaka that I found on Youtube, and I like the result. It gives the recipe a more Mediterranean flavor. I sprinkled on some grated Parmesan and some smoked paprika before I browned the moussaka in the oven.
When I had a convenient kitchen, in California, I used to make an eggplant dish which consisted of layers of eggplant, tomato sauce, Swiss cheese and ham slices covered with tomato sauce and grated Swiss cheese. It was very good. I baked the eggplant slices in the oven while preparing the tomato sauce.ReplyDelete
That does sound really good. I think I might make that using zucchini instead of eggplant, since we are still harvesting a lot of zucchinis from the garden.Delete
I'm sure it would be equally delicious with zucchini, or a mix of zucchini and eggplant.Delete
Ah, I've never heard of using olive oil for the roux. Interesting. Makes sense that it would give it a more Mediterranean flavor. Good thing we have you to try everything out for us and report back ;)ReplyDelete
I often use p;ove oil for the roux because ot os what I always have in the house. The result is just as good as butter. But then I often sub oil for butter in cakes and biscuits too and have got used to the taste.ReplyDelete
You can make mini moussakas by halving the aubergine, or zucchinis, baking them till just soft, hollowing them out and filling them with mince meat sauce, and then the mornay sauce. Sprinkle cheese on top and bake till brown. I like these even more. They are called little shoes in greek.
Sorry about the mistakes. That should have been olive oilDelete
No problem. Sometimes the keyboard just won't cooperate. I like the idea of individual moussakas, and I'll have to make those soon.Delete
Looks great! I like Allen's idea of the little shoes.ReplyDelete
Those "little shoes" do sound like a good way to cook and serve moussaka.Delete