Golden, creamy bechamel on top, rich layered goodies, sweet aubergines, we can only be talking about one thing here – moussaka. You'll find this delight on menus everywhere from Greece and the Balkans, and of course, here in the UAE. Restaurants like Meat N Fish, Eat Greek and Bait Misk have been serving up this stacked wonder for absolutely ages.
You'll find this Greek classic served up all over the world. And we think this is because it's proper soul food – rich, hearty and delicious. It's generally made up of three main parts – beautifully seasoned minced lamb or beef, creamy béchamel and the all-important aubergines. Carefully layered and baked up with love, moussaka is always a real treat.
Very traditional moussaka recipes also use a layer of thinly sliced potatoes on the top as a final offering, but more modern versions seem to have ditched this layer and opted for a thicker blanket of custard-like béchamel and sometimes add a layer of grated cheese. As dairy fanatics, we're big fans of that last bit.
While the Greeks get most of the credit for coming up with this delight, the word moussaka is actually Arabic in origin, coming from musaqqa'ah, meaning chilled.
This kind of hints to the fact that it should be served up cold, but here, and across the rest of the world, you'll often find it both ways. While a cold version makes for a great mezze addition, there's nothing quite like a rich, steaming dish either.
Running hot and cold
There seems to be an unspoken rule on the foodie scene to honour tradition when it comes to moussaka, with restaurants universally serving it up the way it's been for centuries. But you'll find it as a few different parts of your meal, depending on where you order from.
Over at Bait Misk you'll find the Moussaka Eggplant stewed with chickpeas, capsicum and tomato salad, and whipped up as part of the cold mezze offering. This one is vegetarian friendly, but if you're a carnivore through and through, it's Eat Greek's version that's the one for you. This 'proper Greek delight' is made up with potatoes, eggplant, minced meat and a creamy béchamel sauce.
If you like your moussaka hot and hearty though, over at Meat N Fish they serve it up steaming, with melted cheese and that rich, comforting smell that we all know and love.
Order in and layer up with moussaka. Explore the great choices here on Deliveroo.