Recipe

Vegetarian moussaka

Layers of roasted eggplant and potatoes with a chunky tomato and lentil sauce and topped with creamy ricotta bechamel sauce!

  • 2 hrs 10 mins cooking
  • Serves 6
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Ingredients

Vegetarian moussaka
  • 600 grams (1¼lb) dutch cream potatoes, peeled
  • ⅓ cup (80ml) olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 4 medium eggplants (1.2kg)
  • 1 cup (200g) dried French-style green lentils
  • 1 medium onion (150g), chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 fresh long red chilli, chopped finely
  • 1 medium carrot (120g), chopped finely
  • 1 medium red capsicum (bell pepper) (200g), chopped finely
  • 2 cups (500ml) bottled tomato passata
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 200 g (6½oz) firm fetta, crumbled (see tip)
  • ½ cup (50g) grated mozzarella (see tip)
Ricotta bechamel
  • 1½ cups (360g) fresh ricotta
  • 1 cup (280g) greek yoghurt
  • 3 eggs, beaten lightly
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Method

Vegetarian moussaka
  • 1
    Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Lightly oil a large oven tray.
  • 2
    Cut potatoes into 1cm (½in) thick slices; place in a single layer on tray. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the oil, top with 2 teaspoons of the oregano, then season. Turn potato slices to coat evenly. Bake for 30 minutes or until browned. Transfer cooked potatoes to a baking-paper-lined tray.
  • 3
    Meanwhile, cut 3 eggplants lengthways, into 1cm (½in) thick slices. Place eggplant in a single layer on two trays; brush with 1 tablespoon of the oil, season and scatter with 1 teaspoon of the oregano. Working in batches, cook eggplant slices on a heated chargrill plate (or chargrill pan or barbecue) for 5 minutes each side or until browned and tender. Transfer cooked eggplant to baking-paper-lined trays.
  • 4
    Place lentils and 1 litre (4 cups) water in a medium saucepan; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 15 minutes or until tender. Drain; rinse under cold water, drain well.
  • 5
    Chop remaining eggplant into 2cm (¾in) pieces. Heat remaining oil in a large heavy-based saucepan; cook onion, garlic and chilli for 4 minutes or until soft. Add chopped eggplant; cook 5 minutes or until golden and softened. Stir in carrot and capsicum; cook for 4 minutes. Stir in passata and ½ cup (125ml) water, the thyme and remaining oregano. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, for 5 minutes or until eggplant is soft. Stir in drained lentils; season.
  • 6
    Make ricotta bechamel.
  • 7
    Arrange potato slices in a single layer in an oiled 3-litre (12-cup) capacity, 22.5cm x 36cm (9in x 14½in) ovenproof dish; top with half the tomato mixture, then arrange half the eggplant slices on top in a single layer. Repeat with remaining tomato mixture and remaining eggplant. Spoon ricotta bechamel on top, sprinkle with fetta and mozzarella; drizzle with oil.
  • 8
    Bake for 55 minutes or until heated through and top is golden. Stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Ricotta bechamel
  • 9
    Whisk ingredients in a medium bowl until combined and smooth.

Notes

Tip Check the label of the cheeses to ensure they are suitable for vegetarians.Serve it Serve with a mixed green salad; if you like.Store it Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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