Thursday, February 11, 2010

Vegetarian Moussaka-Style Bake

Moussaka is one of my all time favourites, almost in all of its forms, it's impossible to make it bad :)
However, this time I needed one that would be lighter that the traditional dish, so I ended up with the idea to change meat in moussaka with chargrilled vegetables instead.
The result turned out so perfect, that I'd share.
This time I also used different herbs and spices in my intention to remain true to the Italian cuisine. And pesto alla Genovese goes just great with the chargrilled vegetables.

Makes one large deep tin.

1 kg potatoes - chopped
1 cup of water
750 gr previously chargrilled vegetables - aubergines, courgettes, red, yellow, orange peppers (skins on), onions - chopped
5 tbsp olive oil
4 cloves of garlic
3 tsp pesto alla Genovese
400 gr chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp basil leaves
1 tbsp parsley
salt, pepper

for the topping
400 ml yoghurt
3 large eggs
4 tbsp flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
salt (very important)

Alternatively - grated mozzarella or other melting cheese

Heat the oil in a deep pan. Add the crushed garlic cloves, stir for a couple of seconds and add the chopped potatoes and braise for 10 minutes.
When the potatoes are a bit tender, add a cup of water, the pesto, tomatoes and the chargrilled vegetables, mix well, add the remaining spices and leave on low heat to braise until the potatoes are almost ready.

Place in a deep large tin and put in the oven at 190 degrees for more 15-20 minutes.
In the meantime make the topping.
Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl, not forgetting to add the salt. Pour over the moussaka, and bake for more 10-15 minutes until golden.
If you're adding melting cheese, sprinkle it on top 3-4 minutes before the crust has started to go brown.

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