My mom has stories from when she was my age that I absolutely love. She was a military brat that lived in Germany for a good few years of her teenage life and got into all sorts of things. From what I can remember her telling, for a graduation trip from high school, she and a group of friends backpacked across some of the countries of Europe (bucketlist achiever, ikr?). Among those countries was Greece, and man did she rave about the food and drink there. One of the many dishes she would talk about was moussaka, which is an eggplant-based dish, kind of reminiscent of lasagna but replacing the pasta with cooked eggplant slices. Well this past summer, we were able to have an eggplant plant (that's weird to say) and harvest a few veggies from it. So we decided it was time to put it to the spotlight!
2 eggplants, thinly sliced (we did ours from about 1/4th to 1/8th inch thick)
1lb ground lean lamb (ground beef can be substituted, lamb can be pricey)
2 red onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
14 oz canned tomatoes
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
10 fl oz (or 1 1/4 cup) plain greek yogurt
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, shredded/shaved (your preference!)
1. Dry-fry the eggplant slices (no oil or fats, just the eggplant) in batches in a skillet until both sides are browned. Remove the slices and set them to the side. Preheat the oven to 350F
2. Using the same skillet, add in the lamb (or beef) and cook for about 5 minutes, until browned. Stir in the onions and garlic, cooking for another 5 minutes until they begin to cook down. Add in the tomatoes, parsley, salt and pepper, and bring to a boil, letting it simmer for 20 minutes or until meat is tender.
3. Arrange half of the slices along the bottom of an 11x7in casserole dish in a layer, cover with the meat mixture as a layer, and then top that with the rest of the eggplant slices.
4. Beat the eggs in a bowl and mix in the greek yogurt thoroughly, adding in some salt and pepper to personal preference. Pour the mixture over the eggplants and scatter the parmesan cheese over the top.
5. Bake the moussaka for about 45 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
Serve straight from the dish and garnish with extra parmesan and fresh parsley sprigs. Enjoy!