Turkey Moussaka [Recipe]
Aubergine or eggplant, call it what you like, happens to be a favorite vegetable of mine. In it’s raw form is it pretty bland, but once grilled or pan-fried its flavor is magically transformed! Eggplant is incredibly popular in European and Middle Eastern cooking, most typically used in casseroles like this delicious moussaka!
I played around with a recipe substituting the ground beef for turkey and making the béchamel sauce a little more macro friendly. Given that Jason managed to eat the entire casserole in 2 days I’d say the verdict on this one is two thumbs up!
Meat & Eggplant layers
- 1 pound ground turkey 90/10 lean
- 1 large onion, I used red onion
- 1 cloves garlic, peeled & minced
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp all spice
- 1 tsp cumin
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes, I like Muir Glen fire roasted
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 650 g eggplant, roughly 2 medium-sized eggplants
Creamy "bechamel" layer
- 2 large eggs
- 100 g grated mature cheddar cheese, feta or strong tasting goats cheese is good too
- 250 g 0% fat greek yogurt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- 1 clove garlic, peeled & minced
- Place turkey in a medium saucepan over medium heat, break it into small chunks and cook until brown, about 4 minutes. Drain liquid and transfer to a bowl.
- Add onion and garlic in the same saucepan and season with salt, pepper, cinnamon, all spice & cumin. Mix and cook for about 3 minutes. Add ground turkey back to the pan. Add crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to a boil on high heat then reduce to low and simmer uncovered for one hour.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- While turkey is cooking, prepare eggplants. Remove the ends and slice them thinly lengthways. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and place 12 eggplant slices on it. You may need to use two baking sheets or bake them in two batches depending on the size of your oven. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from the oven and let cool.
- Prepare béchamel sauce. Crack eggs into a bowl and whisk until well-mixed. Add the greek yogurt, corn starch, garlic and pepper and stir well ensuring there are no lumps. Add half of your grated cheese or cheese crumbles and gently mix in.
- Assemble moussaka. Place half of the eggplant on the bottom of a large baking dish, cover with half of the meat mixture. Place another layer of eggplant then the remaining turkey meat mixture. Using a rubber spatula, spread the béchamel sauce evenly and then top with the remainder of your cheese. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown. Remove from the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.