EGGPLANT & MINCE
2 eggplants, sliced
600g extra lean beef mince
1 kg potatoes, peeled and sliced
2 medium onions, grated
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
Ѕ cup white wine
400g tinned diced tomatoes, reduced salt
2 tbs tomato paste, reduced salt
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp all spice
1 tsp beef stock powder, salt reduced
Pinch of pepper
tbs extra virgin olive oil
2Ѕ tbs plain flour
Pinch of salt and pepper
ј tsp nutmeg
1 cup low fat milk
⅓ cup extra light grated cheese
⅓ cup grated kefalotyri cheese
Thinly slice potatoes and dry bake on baking paper in an oven at 180°C until potato is tender. Set aside.
In a large saucepan, sauté onion and garlic in 1 tablespoon of oil, until softened. Add mince and brown all over. Once mince is brown, add wine, tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, allspice, stock powder and pepper and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Remove bay leaves and cinnamon stick.
While this is simmering, thinly slice eggplants and place on a baking tray. Sprinkle the eggplant with a pinch of salt and brush the tops with the rest of the olive oil. Place the eggplant in a 180°C oven for approximately 10 minutes, or until brown.
In a baking dish, cover bottom of the dish with sliced potatoes, layer with eggplant and then mince. Continue layering in this order until all ingredients are used.
Prepare béchamel sauce: Heat oil in a saucepan and stir in flour. Cook on moderate heat for 3 minutes, constantly whisking.Whisk until the mixture is free of lumps. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly until the mixture is completely blended and smooth. Simmer until sauce has thickened. Continue to stir. Bring to the boil. Remove from heat. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Remove béchamel sauce from heat. Stir eggs and cheese into the bйchamel sauce until an even, smooth consistency. Pour over the top layer of eggplant in the baking dish.
Bake in a moderate oven of 180°C for 40 – 45 minutes or until golden.
This is an edited extract from Mediterranean Eating Eating Cook – Eat – Live! $39.99 available now online.
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