Friday, November 4, 2011

Easy Weeknight Moussaka

I love moussaka and when eggplant is as cheap as it's been the past few weeks at the farmer's market (50 cents each for very large eggplants!), I'm going to dive in and make this comfort food dish.  It isn't that hard and it lasts quite a while.

2-3 large eggplant, peeled and sliced in thick slices
sea salt
1 lb. ground beef, very low fat content is best
2 large onions, diced
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
16 oz. can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup dark red wine
8 oz. tomato sauce
Parmesan cheese, grated

Slice the eggplant and coat both sides of each slice in sea salt.  Place in a dish and allow to rest until a good amount of water has accumulated in the bottom of your dish (about a half hour).  Rinse the salt off the eggplant well and towel dry.

In a non-stick skillet add a small amount of olive oil and fry the eggplant slices about 3-4 minutes on each side.  Set aside in a 9 x 13 baking pan.

Brown the hamburger and onion in a skillet.  Drain if necessary.  Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, wine, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Allow to simmer for at least 15 minutes.

In a 9 x 13 baking dish (I prefer glass), arrange a layer of eggplant along the bottom.  Cover with 1/2 the beef ragu.  Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese all over the top of that layer.  Add another layer of eggplant, ragu, and cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-50 minutes.  Serve and enjoy!

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