Moussaka with Courgette

Moussaka with courgette

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Moussaka with courgette?? It’s my take on a traditional Moussaka: a Moussaka in disguise if you will.  My recipe doesn’t use the traditional aubergine – I simply wasn’t feeling the aubergine love the day I made this – but you can of course add it if you’re a traditionalist!  Instead I use courgette. It passed the Lentil taste test and I actually used a mix of aubergine and courgette when I last made it for us parent people.  Of course I’m going to say I think it’s nicer with the courgette addition….but I really do!

Makes about 2 adult and 3-4 child portions

The what:

400g minced lamb

400g tinned chopped tomatoes

300ml stock (chicken or vegetable)

a bunch spring onions, chopped

1 courgette, topped, tailed and sliced (or you can use the more traditional aubergine)

4 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced

1 small garlic clove, finely chopped

2 tsp flour

1 tbsp oregano

2 tsp dried mint

2 tsp tomato puree

1 Cinnamon stick

for the white sauce:

40g unsalted butter

40g flour

400ml milk

20g parmesan plus a little extra for sprinkling on top

1 tsp nutmeg, grated

1 egg yolk

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The how:

Pre-heat the oven to 220C (200 fan).  Cook the lamb in a pan until brown and remove.  Add the onions and garlic to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Re-add the lamb, mint, oregano, cinnamon stick, flour, chopped tomatoes, tomato puree and stock and cook for a further 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the sliced potatoes to boiling water, bring back to the boil and simmer for 8 minutes.

To make the white sauce, melt the unsalted butter in a medium-sized pan and stir in the flour to make a paste.  Gradually add the milk, continuously stirring until any pasty lumps have dissolved.  Grate in the nutmeg, add the Parmesan and mix well.  Once you have a thick, smooth sauce, remove from the heat and mix in the egg yolk.

Remove the cinnamon stick from the lamb and assemble your moussaka in an oven-proof dish.  Start with a layer of lamb, followed by a layer of potatoes and then the courgettes. Repeat twice or three times depending on the size of your dish.  Finally smooth the white sauce over the top layer of courgette.  Sprinkle some extra Parmesan over the sauce and place in the oven for about 25-30 minutes, until the dish is bubbling, the top is golden brown and you can easily cut through the potatoes and courgettes.

Enjoy!

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