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Garlicky brinjal, baby marrow and lentil moussaka

Garlicky brinjal, baby marrow and lentil moussaka

A vegetarian twist on a Greek classic.

  • Serves 6
  • More than 1 hour


  • Filling:
  • 3-4 brinjals, sliced lengthways
  • Salt, to drain excess moisture
  • 1 Tbsp (15ml) canola oil
  • 2 red onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp (10ml) ground cumin
  • 2 Tbsp (30ml) tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp (15ml) sugar
  • 1 can (400g) chopped tomatoes
  • ½ cup (125ml) vegetable stock
  • 2 cans (400g) lentils, drained and rinsed
  • Juice (60ml) and grated peel of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tbsp (30ml) chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbsp (30ml) chopped fresh basil
  • Salt and milled pepper
  • White sauce:
  • 2 Tbsp (30ml) butter
  • 2 Tbsp (30ml) flour
  • 2 cups (500ml) almond or cow’s milk
  • 6-8 baby marrows, thinly sliced lengthways
  • ½ packet (150g) mozzarella, grated
  • Handful chopped fresh parsley or microherbs, for serving


  1. Salt brinjals and set aside to drain in a colander for about 30 minutes.
  2. Rinse and pat dry with kitchen paper.
  3. Heat oil in a large pot and fry onions for 3 minutes, or until translucent.
  4. Add garlic and cumin and fry for 2 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, sugar, chopped tomatoes and stock.
  5. Simmer for about 10 minutes, or until sauce is slightly reduced. Stir through lentils and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Add lemon juice and grated peel, and herbs. Season.
  7. Remove from heat.
  8. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, whisk in flour and cook for a minute.
  9. Gradually whisk in milk and cook for about 3 minutes, or until thickened, whisking continuously.
  10. Season and set aside.
  11. Arrange half the brinjals on the base of a greased cast-iron skillet or a 27cm x 17cm rectangular ovenproof dish.
  12. Top with half the lentil filling and then another layer of brinjals.
  13. Top with remaining filling and arrange baby marrows on top.
  14. Pour over white sauce and sprinkle with cheese.
  15. Bake at 180°C for 25-30 minutes, or until golden and cooked through.
  16. Garnish with parsley or microherbs just before serving.
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