Moussaka (Aubergine/Egg Plant/Brinjal)

A Greek/Arab/Turkish dish made all over the world to differing ingredients. This recipe is my mum’s and she frequently made it for us upon request during our growing years in Kenya, and when I eat this it still conjures up a warm loving family feeling. This recipe has a desi take on it, but it is really worth following the many steps it takes to produce this wonderful dish.


  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1lb aubergines (or 2 large)
  • 8oz red or white grated onion
  • 2tsp fresh crushed garlic
  • 1lb minced lamb/beef/chicken
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp red chillie powder (omit for mild)
  • 14oz crushed tinned/fresh tomatoes
  • 2tbs tomato puree

For the sauce

  • 1 pint full fat milk
  • 2 oz butter
  • 2 ox plain flour
  • 1.5 cups grated cheddar cheese
  • 2 eggs beaten

For the paste

  • 2 small fresh tomatoes
  • 3 fresh green chillies or 1 tbs good quality chillie sauce
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Salt to taste


  1. Pre-heat the oven to medium hot 180C/GM5.
  2. Slice the aubergines into thin slices, brush each side with olive oil and place in a heated non-stick frying pan, when brown on one side, turn over gently and brown on other side. Remove into a large plate keeping the slices in single rows.
  3. Put the remaining olive oil in a large non-stick pan, add the onions, then garlic, stir-fry for 3-4 mins, add the mince, salt and red chillies if using. Break up the mince and cook on a medium heat until all liquids have evaporated and oil seeps out (bhun).
  4. Add the tomatoes and tomato puree, heat through, cook covered on low heat for 15 mins, keep stirring from time to time until some liquids have evaporated but about a cup of liquid remains in the mince mixture. Switch off.
  5. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour and cook for two mins, swtich off the heat and cool completely.
  6. Add the milk a little at a time, keep whisks so lumps don’t form, when all the milk has been added, bring to the boil, add some salt and black pepper to taste. Keep on a rolling boil for 2 mins until the sauce thickens. Switch off.
  7. Cool for 5 mins, add the beaten eggs and whisk together.
  8. For the final stage, place a layer of aubergines in the bottom of an oven proof dish, top with a layer of the mince followed by a layer of the aubergines then mince again. Repeat layers until all ingredients are used up.
  9. Pour the white sauce gently until the whole of the top layer is covered, sprinkle the cheese and bake for 30 mins until well browned.
  10. Remove from oven and serve with garlic bread and a chunky salad.


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About Me

I am Sabiha Khokhar, born in Kenya now living in London – a busy working mother, wife, published author and passionate cook. Despite having many interests in life, my greatest joy is FOOD!

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