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MELITZANES PAPOUTSAKIA: EGGPLANT STUFFED WITH GROUND MEAT SAUCE AND BECHAMEL

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Ingredients

  • 4 eggplants, washed and dried
  • 1 pound ground beef, chicken or lamb
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 cups pureed, canned tomatoes
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • a handful of fresh parsley, chopped
  • For the BĂ©chamel:
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 5 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • pinch of ground nutmeg
  • about 2 cups of grated parmesan
  • Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

Instructions

1

Melitzanes papoutsakia translates to eggplant slippers in Greek. If you like Moussaka, you will LOVE this dish. It's really elegant to serve to guests. I love how they look. Each person gets their own individual, beautifully stuffed eggplant 🙂

2

This is a great dish to prepare when preparing celebratory dinners or lunches for showers, engagements, holidays....

3

Slice the eggplants in half lengthwise and scoop out the pulp leaving a half inch border. Chop up the pulp and set aside.

4

Place the prepared eggplants on a baking sheet. brush with olive oil to coat the eggplant inside and out. Sprinkle with some salt.

5

Roast in the oven facing up for 6 minutes. Raise the oven temperature to broil and cook another 6 minutes or until golden and tender. Do not overcook because they will continue to cook after they are filled.

6

Take them out of the oven and set aside to cool.

7

Set the oven temperature to 400 degrees.

8

Make the meat sauce by cooking the onions in the olive oil until soft and golden. About 10 minutes.

9

Add garlic and cook until soft and golden. About 5 minutes.

10

Add ground beef, tomatoes, salt, pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, eggplant pulp and oregano. Cook over medium- high heat, breaking up the meat.

11

Cook until the meat is completely cooked, eggplant is melted and the sauce is very thick. About 30 minutes.

12

Add chopped parsley to the meat sauce and remove from the heat. Mix well.

13

Now, it's time to make the béchamel sauce. Heat olive oil and flour over medium heat and cook for a few minutes, while constantly whisking, until the flour gets toasted and creamy.

14

Add milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Whisk it and cook until it comes to a boil. Cook until nice and thick. Remove from heat.

15

Temper the eggs by pouring a ladle full of the hot cream mixture to the eggs and whisking them vigorously.

16

Add the egg mixture to the cream sauce. The béchamel is ready!

17

It's time to put it all together.

18

Fill the eggplants with the meat sauce. Top with béchamel sauce and sprinkle a generous amount of parmesan cheese on top.

19

Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes or until nice and golden on top.

20

Enjoy 🙂

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