The ultimate makeover: Moussaka

The ultimate makeover: Moussaka

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(30 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 5 mins

Skill level

Moderately easy

Servings

Serves 6

A light and healthy, but rich-tasting Greek-style dish

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

kcalories
325
protein
28g
carbs
19g
fat
15g
saturates
5g
fibre
6g
sugar
14g
salt
0.65g

Ingredients

  • 2½ tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 plump garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 large carrots (350g total weight), diced
  • 450g 5% fat minced beef
  • 100ml white wine
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus extra
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • 400g can plum tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 heaped tbsp chopped oregano leaves
  • 2 good handfuls chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to garnish
  • 3 aubergines (about 750g/1lb 10oz total weight), ends trimmed
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

For the topping

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 300g 2% Greek yogurt
  • 50g parmesan, grated

To serve

  • halved cherry tomatoes and thinly sliced red onion and rocket salad

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Method

  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large, wide sauté pan. Tip in the onion and garlic, then fry for 6-8 mins until turning golden. Add the carrots and fry for 2 mins more. Stir the meat into the pan, breaking it up as you stir. Cook and stir over a high heat until the meat is no longer pink. Pour in the wine and briefly cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir in the cinnamon and allspice. Tip in the tomatoes, tomato purée and 1 tbsp water (mixed with any juices left in the can), then stir to break up the tomatoes. Season with some pepper, add all the oregano and half the parsley, cover, then simmer on a low heat for 50 mins, stirring occasionally. Season to taste. Mix in the remaining parsley. Can be done a day ahead and refrigerated overnight.
  2. While the meat cooks (unless you are doing this a day ahead) prepare the aubergines. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/ gas 6. Brush a little of the remaining oil onto 2 large baking sheets. Mix the rest of the oil with the lemon juice. Slice the aubergines into 1cm thick lengthways slices, then lay them on the oiled baking sheets. Brush with the oil and lemon mix, then season with pepper. Bake for 20-25 mins until soft, then set aside. Lower oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4.
  3. Spread 2 big spoonfuls of the meat mixture on the bottom of an ovenproof dish (about 28 x 20 x 6cm deep). Lay the aubergine slices on top, slightly overlapping. Spoon the rest of the meat mixture on top. Beat the eggs in a bowl. Slacken the cornflour with a little of the yogurt, stir in the rest of the yogurt, then mix this into the eggs with half the cheese. Season with pepper. Pour and spread this over the meat to cover it. Sprinkle with the rest of the cheese, a little cinnamon and a grating of pepper. Bake for 50 mins-1 hr until bubbling and golden.
  4. Leave moussaka to settle for 8-10 mins, then scatter over some chopped parsley and cut into squares. Serve with a salad of tomato, red onion and rocket.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, May 2009

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Comments

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heather444's picture
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Cooked this for the first time earlier this week and absolutely loved it! Will definitely cook it again. I followed the recipe to the letter and found it would feed 6 if served with salad and perhaps boiled potatoes. It's much easier to cook than the recipe would suggest too.

jeyleebean's picture
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This turned out fabulous, made it with my favourite person and we both enjoyed it. Subbed the beef for lamb. I always think moussaka should be made with lamb anyway. Used just one large aubergine. Added cheddar to the topping and covered it with foil so it wouldn't burn. Used real tomatoes and omitted lemon juice and allspice.

Also cooked the mince for just 30 minutes. We figured it was going to get well cooked in the oven for 1 hour. I really enjoyed it. So yummy

dorothyd's picture

First time making moussaka and this was a truly excellent recipe. My guests all commented on how tasty it was and I was left with a completely empty dish, which to me, is a real sign of good food. I prepared the meat for the dish the day before and I think this helped with the deep flavour of the dish. Will be definitely be making this one again.

rokat's picture

Made this recipe to eat with friends. It was delicious ....not a morsel was left. Can't wait to Make it again.

rokat's picture

Made this recipe to eat with friends and it was a resounding success. Not a morsel was left. Will certainly make it again.

Angelica Mercieca Ciantar's picture

Been making this moussaka version for a while now. It's an excellent dish for when you're on a diet and my husband loves it too. I like having a serving for dinner and taking the other serving for lunch to work next day. I find that the cooking time on the meat sauce is rather extended and that it cooks well enough with 15-20mins. I sometimes swap white for red wine (depending on the availability in my fridge) and always use regular non-fat plain yogurt rather than greek yogurt, still turns out just fine. I sometimes use feta cheese to crumble on top rather than parmesan and I like to add some soya mince to my meat to reduce the calories. 2 aubergines are enough esp if they are rather big and to reduce the fat content further I sometimes like to cook my meat before and drain the fat before adding it to the sauce mix.

gemmaeyre's picture
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Made this for some friends,never made moussaka before but will be making it again now. I changed the recipe slightly, as my husband doesn't like aubergine. I replaced it with slices of potato. Everyone said how nice it was. I served it with the suggested salad. Yum!

satutatu's picture

Chose this recipe to use up 3 aubergines. Used 600g meat, substituted passata & red wine and added 2 bay leaves. Cooked for much shorter so had a substantial sauce for over the aubergines. Added crumbled feta to the eggy yoghurt mix and more on top as well as more oregano & grana padano. It's in the oven now & smells divine! The topping has puffed right up so covered loosely with foil to avoid burning. Can't wait to try it!

cshobbs's picture

Tasted great! Certainly wasn't disappointed. Takes a while to prepare, the timings are accurate, other than the meat mixture was simmered for 30 mins as suggested by others. No harder than other moussakas I have tried in the past. Used red wine and halved the amount of cinnamon.
I didn't serve with a side salad, and would say that the recipe gave 4 good size portions.

ziggy1945's picture

My husband took one mouthful and said he hated the cinnamon taste! I shall leave it out next time and try again!

Stephy19's picture
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Was lovely, but I followed to the letter, and found that it was a bit dry, and I hate far too much aubergine and not enough meat. I'd make it again, just tweak it a little!

jabrady91's picture

I've made this for my lunches this week and it's really nice especially when you want something comforting on a diet.
I cooked the mince for 20 mins, aubergine for 15 and put in the oven for 45. I like a darker topping for creamy mixtures as the texture is nicer but other people may not like this.
I had 600g of mince so added that and swapped parmesan for cheddar. Would definitely make again though.

welshden's picture
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Gawjus! - reduced the cooking time to half an hour for both on the hob and in the oven and cinnamon to a half teaspoon as per the other comments on here - I didn't have any cornflour so omitted it from the topping and used grated cheddar instead of parmesan.

Was absolutely delicious served with a onion and radish salad and chilli pita crisps (recipe on here).

mamacharp's picture
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I forgot to rate it: 4 out of 5- great taste, timings were misleading. I also thought that as described (due to timings) it didnt seem like an easy recipe...but in reality it is. In short, a great recipe but let down slightly by the description which makes it seem more effort than it is.

mamacharp's picture
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I used low fat creme fraiche combined with fat free yoghurt (rather than 2% fat yoghurt)... Tasted great. My aubergine slices took 15 mind to bake (used fry light spray to grease pan). I fast cookef the meat mixture uncovered in a wok for less time than stated. The whole dish then only took 20mins to bake in oven. Don't be out off by long times listed in this recipe, they are overkill. I didn't think there was enough meat mixture for two layers. So mine was one layer of meat and one layer aubergines with white topping directly on top of aubergines. Worked fine. I added diced celery when I added the carrot and I added a teaspoon of garlic salt to the meat mixture toward the end.

feebee23's picture
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Really enjoyed this one was worth the time it took. The Greek yogurt layer is nice I reduced the amount though so it wasnt too thick a layer. The meat sauce was really nice, I cooked the meat sauce for about 35mins as I felt it would be too dry if left for too long. Give this one a try if your looking for a healthy choice, I'm sure I ll be doing this one again !!

danielamacdonald's picture

I found this recipe very tasty, though actually added double the amount of spice, including nutmeg. I only had one large Aubergine, but think 2 would have been better - I don't think I would have needed 3. Though I rather liked the topping, it ended up like a really light omlette or suffle. Odd and not what I was expecting but it was tasty, nonetheless.

cowen84's picture
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Made this last night for my moussaka loving friend, and it went down a treat. Cooked the beef mix for an hour as stated, and used mixed spice as didnt have any all spice - still tasted delicious however.
Loved the yoghurty topping too.
Check out my baking blog
http://bumblebakery.blogspot.co.uk/

lin_dauer's picture

Absolutely gorgeous, I added a couple of bay leaves to the mince as it was cooking and it added another dimension. I agree that the mince only needs half an hour - 50 mins dries it out too much!

caroltansley1's picture
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My boyfriend is Greek and he absolutely loves this! I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out beautifully.

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