Moussaka

Ingredients

  • 2 medium eggplants
  • olive oil (as needed)
  • 1.5 lb lean ground beef 
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh minced garlic (or to taste)
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce (3/4 cup tomato paste + 1 cup water = 2 cup tomato sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper (or to taste)

Cheese sauce

  • tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • tablespoons flour
  • cup half-and-half cream
  • egg
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese/ mozzarella cheese  (can use more)

Directions

  1. Grease a 13 x 9 pan.
  2. Peel the eggplants then slice 1/4-inch thick (or a little thicker won’t hurt).
  3. Brush cookie sheet with olive oil.
  4. Coat each side of sliced eggplant with olive oil then season slices with salt and freshly ground pepper (I use seasoned salt for this and use as much pepper as desired).
  5. Place the eggplant slices on cookie sheet; broil under the broiler until brown; turn and broil the other side, brushing with oil if needed; repeat with all eggplant slices.
  6. In the bottom of the prepared baking dish arrange half of the eggplant slices.
  7. In a large skillet, combine beef and onions; cook stirring until the beef is no longer pink and the onions are soft; drain fat.
  8. Add in the garlic, tomato sauce, oregano, 1/2 tsp salt and black pepper to taste; pour mixture over eggplant slices.
  9. Arrange the remaining eggplant slices over the beef mixture.
  10. PREPARE THE CHEESE SAUCE: Melt the butter in a saucepan, whisk in flour, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to taste; gradually stir in half and half or milk, cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly.
  11. In a small bowl, beat egg; stir in some of the hot sauce, then add egg to sauce mixture, mix well; add in Parmesan cheese, and stir again.
  12. Pour the cheese sauce over mixture in baking dish.
  13. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 45 minutes.
  14. Cut into squares.

Adapted from http://greek.food.com/recipe/kittencals-greek-moussaka-88804

I doubled the cheese sauce and used 1.5 times the beef

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Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

Ingredients

Crust
    • 14 to 15 digestive biscuits
    • 1/3 cup melted butter or slightly more if necessary
Filling
    • 4 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
    • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
    • 4 eggs
    • 1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
    • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 300°F.
  2. Line a 13X9″ baking pan with parchment paper leaving about 1 inch of paper hanging on the sides.
  3. In a medium size bowl, combine the digestive biscuit crumbs with the melted butter.
  4. Press the crust on the bottom of the prepared pan. Set aside while making the filling.
  5. In a mixing bowl, add the cream cheese and sugar. With the paddle attachment on, beat on low speed until light and fluffy.
  6. Beat in eggs, one at a time, just until blended.
  7. Spoon half of the mixture over the crust and spread evenly.
  8. To remaining cream cheese mixture add pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice.
  9. With a wire whisk stir until smooth. Carefully, spoon over mixture in pan.
  10. Bake the cheesecake in the preheated oven for 50 minutes or until just set. Turn off the oven and leave the door ajar allowing the cheesecake to slowly cool down for about 1 hour or so.
  11. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before cutting into bars

Notes

– A thicker pumpkin layer and more pumpkin next time

Adapted from: http://roxanashomebaking.com/pumpkin-cheesecake-bars-recipe/