Fast Food Thursday: Make-do Moussaka

Profile of an eggplant, incinerated

Yesterday buried deep in online mah jong work, I neglected the eggplant I had placed on the grill. These are the eggplants I grew from tiny seedlings. Tucked into the earth with my bare hands. Tender, perfectly formed, succulent aubergines. Burned to a crisp.

Though somewhat disturbed by my callous disregard for our purple babies, I nonetheless sauteed up some of the ubiquitous summer squash to fill in. The result: A tastey, not-too-time-consuming casserole.

1 large eggplant, peeled and sliced

1 onion chopped

2 cloves garlic

1 Tbs olive oil

1 lb ground beef

1 14-ounce can tomatoes

1/4 cup red wine

1 Tbs cinnamon

1 Tbs oregano

1/2 tsp allspice

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 cup raisins

1 cup bread crumbs

grated parmesan cheese

salt and pepper


Grill eggplant until tender (not blistered). Sautee and season onion and garlic in olive oil until translucent. Add ground beef and cook until just browned. Add tomatoes, wine and spices and simmer until sauce is thick. Add raisins. Line greased casserole dish with eggplant. Top with spicey meat mixture, bread crumbs and cheese. Bake covered at 400 degrees until heated through. Uncover to brown cheese.

Serve with pita bread and salad.

*Note: If you're light on eggplant, you can fill in with sauteed or grilled summer squash or fresh spinach.


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