This traditional Greek dish of aubergine, meat, and bechamel sauce is complimented by the addition of potatoes.
• 3 – 4 medium eggplants
• 3 – 4 potatoes
• 500 gr. ground pork or beef
• 1 medium size onion
• Chopped parsley
• Salt, pepper, cinnamon,
• 3 fresh tomatoes peeled and blended or 1 tin tomatoes 400gr.
• Olive oil for frying
For the Bechamel
60 g butter
60 g plain flour
1/2 litre milk
salt and pepper
pinch of nutmeg
1.Peel eggplants leaving some stripes on and cut into three slices, leave in a bowl with water and salt for about 1 hour. Peel and cut the potatoes in 1 cm. thick slices. If fried at a later stage leave in water.
2.In a frying pan sauté the ground meet with the finely chopped onion, add tomatoes, parsley, cinnamon, salt and pepper and about ½ glass of water. Cook until sauce is evaporated. Remove from stove.
3.Meantime, rinse the potatoes and start frying in olive oil until having a light golden colour on both sides, then continue with the eggplants. When removing from pan place in a strainer or place on absorbent kitchen paper to absorb excess oil.
4..Place in an oven pan about 27 X 35 X 5 cm, sprinkle with dried bread crumbs and put a layer of potatoes. Cover the in between gaps with the eggplants. Salt and pepper. Place the minced meat on top and cover with another layer of potatoes and eggplants.
5.Cover with béchamel sauce (see Preparation below) sprinkle dried myzithra cheese on top and cinnamon.
6.Pre-heat oven at 180o C or 355o F and bake in oven until a nice golden colour is achieved.
Melt the butter in a saucepan and stirr in the flour to make a smooth paste. Add seasonings, then gradually add the milk (which should be at room temperature), beating constantly to make a
smooth thick sauce.
Cook very gently and then add half the remaining grated cheese. Allow to cool and thicken even more, then spoon the sauce over the filled aubergines, covering the surfaces completely.
Sprinkle over the rest of the cheese, add a little water to the pan and bake at 170 C (335 F)for about 40 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.