Individual Moussaka
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • Individual Moussaka
  • April 7, 2015
  • During our stay in Greece last April, my daughter and I spent a day in the kitchen at the Melenos Lindos Hotel in Lindos, Rhodes. This stunning property has some of the very best food we had anywhere in Greece. Melenos Chef Georgia Georgakopoulou and her talented staff have a refined and elegant interpretation of the classics with some unique twists. Here's a brilliant and elegant presentation for Moussaka. No aggravating salting and rinsing of the eggplant -and the moussaka slips right out of the mold.
  • Individual Moussaka
  • 1 large eggplant, sliced into thick slices about 1½ inches thick
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon onion, finely chopped
  • 1 pound strip loin minced into tiny pieces, or 90% lean ground beef
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • Nutmeg to taste
  • 4 tablespoons Parmesan or Gruyere cheese, finely grated
  • 2 egg yolks
Instructions
  1. Eggplant prep
  2. Wash eggplant and with the skin on, cut into thick slices about 1½ inches thick. Dip slices in cold water and then toss them in 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Add 1 tablespoon oil to a medium frying pan Over medium heat, fry the eggplant slices until golden brown, flipping halfway through. Remove from heat and let drain on a paper towel lined plate. When cool enough to handle, peel the skin of the eggplant slices.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. Meat filling
  5. In the same medium pan over medium heat, sauté the ground beef and onions until lightly browned. Add 1 cup white wine, raise temperature to medium high and simmer until wine is evaporated. Add the tomato and bay leaf and simmer for another 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in parsley, a dash of nutmeg and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Bechamel sauce
  7. Heat the milk in a small saucepan. In a medium size saucepan over medium heat, stir remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and 3 tablespoons flour, stirring continuously until it becomes creamy and thick. Slowly add the hot milk in a stream, stirring continuously. The sauce with get very thick but will loosen up as you continue to stir. Cook while stirring for a few minutes. Add the rosemary, remaining nutmeg, 2 tablespoons of the cheese, 2 egg yolks and salt and pepper to taste. Stir well, remove bay leaf and set aside to allow the bechamel to rest.
  8. Final prep
  9. Using a round mold or deep ramekin, place the containers on a parchment lined baking sheet. Into the molds, begin layering a slice of eggplant and the a sprinking of cheese and then some bechamel sauce, so that all three of the layers are about the same thickness.
  10. Cook the moussakas in the oven for about 20-25 minutes. Remove them when the tops are browned, bubbling and puffed up. Allow to cool for a few minutes. If using a mold (like in the pictures) you can unmold the moussaka and serve. If using a ramekin, serve directly in the container. Garnish with rosemary and grated cheese if desired.
  11. Makes about 6 individual moussakas.
Recipe by Seasons in Vermont at https://seasonsinvermont.com/individual-moussaka/