This is a variation on a theme: Given that the garden has offered up a small bounty of eggplant and the given the fact that I am no Greek, I am still going to call tonight's dinner "moussaka".
I am a bit lazy, and always trying to find shortcuts. So here goes:
Take a couple of Italian eggplants and a few Japanese eggplants, peel them leaving just a little of the skin. I halve the Italians lengthwise, slice them all in about quarter inch slices, toss them with some olive oil in a roasting pan with salt, pepper, chopped garlic. Put them in the oven at 400 for about 30-35 minutes, tossing once during the cooking. (Most recipes call for frying the slices - which would take time - this way you can get the other ingredients ready while the eggplant is in the oven.)
|2 Italians and 3 Japanese|
Remove the mixture and into the fry pan put a pound of ground beef and a pound of Italian sausage meat.
My philosophy used to be "more is better" and I and Leon would certainly eat more. We are watching things now since Leon has lost over fifty pounds and I was down thirty. So my new philosophy is "less is almost as good." So I went a little easy on the béchamel which in some moussaka recipes is a layer of up to a half inch. Compared to that, mine is a drizzle.
2 tablespoons of butter, melted and hot in the saucepan, whisk in 2 tablespoons of flour until the flour forms a paste.
Slowly add 1and 1/2 cups of 1% milk (I don't bother warming the milk - I'm lazy). Continue to whisk until the sauce thickens.
Add a dash of nutmeg. Remove from heat. Add about 1 cup of grated parmesan cheese. (Don't add the parmesan while the sauce is over the heat or you will produce a congealed mess.)
(Of course I didn't get a photo of the finished béchamel)
Distribute the tomato meat sauce over the roasted eggplant. Top with the béchamel, a little crumbled low fat feta and some Italian flavored breadcrumbs.
|Moussaka usually has a thick layer of Béchamel (calories)|
Bake in the oven at 350 for 45 minutes or until heated through and bubbling hot.
Steam the fresh green beans just until barely cooked. Rinse in ice cold water. In a bowl mix a little olive oil, a dash of balsamic vinegar, some chopped garlic and toss in the cooked green beans. You can add some fresh tomatoes if you like. Chill in the fridge or serve at room temperature.
We are foregoing the crusty Italian bread tonight - (carbs and calories), but it would definitely be my choice.