The Challenge: â€œHow well can you tackle a classic dish from another culture?â€
At first I thought I would do something Thai, because we just LOVE Thai food. But decided to reach deep down and try something that challenges me and to make it even harder, I decided to try and â€œhealthifyâ€ it! So what challenges me, EGG PLANT and GREEK FOOD!!
My friend told me I should try and make a Healthy Moussakaâ€¦ so I did!
What is Moussaka you ask? Basically, it is a noodle-less lasagna that the Greeks love!
Definition: Casserole of eggplant and ground beef with onion and tomatoes bound with white sauce and beaten eggs.
- 1 tbsp of Onion Powder (or 1 chopped onion)
- 1 tbsp of Garlic Salt
- 3/4 pound of 93% Lean Ground Beef
- 1 can of No-Salt Added Diced Tomatoes
- 1/4 cup of Tomato Paste
- 1/2 tsp of Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp of Ground Allspice
- 1/4 tsp of Basil Leaves
- 2 Eggplants (peeled and cut lengthwise into slices)
- 6 tbsp of Olive Oil
- 2 cups of 1% Milk
- 3 tbsp of Cornstarch
- 1/2 cup of Grated Romano Cheese
What to do??
Heat the broiler. Coat baking dish and a large baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray.
Heat a large skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add in the ground beef, onion, and garlic powder and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring often or until the beef is browned and cooked through.
Stir in the tomatoes (with juice), tomato paste, cinnamon, and allspice. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
Place half of the eggplant on the prepared baking sheet and brush with 3 tablespoons of the oil. Broil for 10 minutes or until browned, turning once. Repeat with the remaining eggplant and 3 tablespoons oil.
I GOT NEW PANS!! Thanks to Costco!
Whisk together the milk and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook, whisking for 8 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese.
Layer half of the eggplant in the baking dish, then half of the meat sauce. Repeat with the eggplant and meat sauce. Spread the cheese sauce on top.
Broil for 3 minutes or until the cheese starts to brown.
It actually came out beautifully!
Healthy & Delicious!
Those Greeks sure know how to eat!
Next time, I will have to experiment with adding in more VEGGIES!
The big test was my first bite. Loved it 🙂
Experimenting in the kitchen brings me great JOY 😉
I will let you all know when the voting pole opens 🙂