Vegetarian Moussaka

Cook time 1 hour
Servings 6

Ingredients

1kg potatoes suitable for frying 4 large zucchinis
8 medium eggplants
½ litre frying oil

Béchamel
1 litre fresh milk
pinch of ground nutmeg
250g butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
200g grated kefalograviera cheese
(⅔ for the béchamel and ⅓ to sprinkle on top of the béchamel)

Sauce
1kg button mushrooms
2 crushed garlic cloves
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 onions finely sliced
2 tbsp chopped parsley
2 bay leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
4 whole cloves
½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 or 3 fresh thyme sprigs

Vegetarian Moussaka

Method

Slice the potatoes, zucchini and eggplant lengthwise into ½ cm slices.
Deep fry them – first the potatoes, then add the eggplants and finally add the courgettes. Remove them and place them on absorbent kitchen paper to drain off as much oil as possible.

Sauce
Gently fry the onions in a large pan. Add the crushed garlic and stir for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms and continue stirring. Add the tomatoes, bay leaves, parsley, cinnamon, cloves and fresh thyme.
Continue heating until all the juice has been absorbed and you have a thick sauce.

Béchamel
In a heavy-bottomed pan gently heat the butter until it melts. Add the flour and stir continuously.
Add half of the milk, nutmeg and continue to stir with a whisk. When the mixture starts to thicken, add the rest of the milk whilst stirring continuously. When it starts to thicken again, lower the temperature to the minimum and add the grated cheese and then turn off.

Assembly
In a deep oven dish place a layer with half of the potatoes at the bottom. Add a layer with the zucchinis on top and then a layer with the eggplants. Spread the sauce on top.
Add a final layer with the remaining potatoes on top of the sauce.
Add the béchamel on top and sprinkle the remaining cheese over it.
Bake in a pre-heated moderate oven for approx. 40 minutes or until it has turned a golden colour on top.
Allow it to rest for 20 minutes before serving.