Ingredients

  • olive oil, for cooking
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 675g lean minced lamb
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tsp fresh soft thyme leaves
  • 175ml (¾ cup) chicken stock (from a stock cube is fine)
  • 800g (3½ cups) canned chopped tomatoes
  • 4 aubergines
  • For the cheese sauce:

  • 50g (4 tbsp) Kerrygold Pure Irish Unsalted Butter
  • 50g (1/3 cup) plain flour
  • 600ml (2½ cups) milk
  • 175g (1½ cups) grated Kerrygold Cheddar
  • 1 egg, plus 2 egg yolks
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • chunky Greek salad, to serve

Directions

This is one of those dishes that we have all come to know and love from summer holidays in Greece. It can be made well in advance until the point it goes in the oven, just allow an extra 15 minutes if cooking from cold.
  1. Heat a little olive oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 3-4 minutes or until softened. Add the lamb and cook until lightly browned, breaking up any lumps with a wooden spoon. Stir in the cinnamon with the allspice, oregano and thyme and cook for 1 minute, stirring. Deglaze the pan with a little of the stock, scraping the bottom to remove any sediment.
  2. Pour in the remaining stock and the tomatoes. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 1 hour until the lamb is completely tender and the sauce is well reduced.
  3. Meanwhile, place cut the aubergines into 1cm slices, then layer in a colander, sprinkling with salt as you go. Set aside on the draining board of the sink for 30 minutes to allow the salt to draw out any bitter juices.
  4. To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a heavy- based pan and stir in the flour. Take off the heat and gradually stir in the milk, then cook for 5 minutes until smooth and thickened, stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in 100g (1 cup) of the cheese. Season, then cool a little before whisking in the egg and egg yolks.
  5. Heat a large frying pan. Rinse the aubergines under cold running water and pat dry with plenty of kitchen paper. Add a couple of tablespoons of the oil to the frying pan and fry the aubergine slices in batches until cooked through and lightly golden, turning once. Drain on kitchen paper to remove excess oil.
  6. Preheat the oven to 180°C, Gas mark 4. Spoon a third of the lamb mixture into an ovenproof dish that is 27.5cm square. Cover with half of the aubergine slices. Repeat the layers, finishing with a layer of the lamb, then pour over the cheese sauce. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top and bake for 1 hour until bubbling and golden brown. Allow the moussaka to settle for 5 minutes before cutting into squares and arranging on warmed plates with a chunky Greek salad.

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